It bothers me when people forget that everyone has every mental function – Sensing, Intuition, Thinking and Feeling.  Or that everyone has some basic human drives – for security, for belonging, etc.  Let me be specific here – sometimes I hear how uncaring Thinking types are, or how illogical Feeling types are.

But every type cares – and cares about people close to them; they just sometimes show it in different ways.

Let me tell you what triggered today’s topic for me. I was sitting with some colleagues and friends this afternoon; there’d been an unexpected death in our midst in this past week.   I remember some of the most soothing, calming and to-the-point things being said by some of our INTP members. “To-the-point” not in an impersonal way, but “to-the-point” in a “yeah, that’s what it’s like and that’s how I feel” kind of way.  Very personal in that sense. Yes their voices were more “even” than - say - someone with a feeling preference, but their voices were not uncaring. In fact, they very clearly cared themselves about this person and they cared about helping others deal with the loss too.

Maybe they didn’t speak the way the feeling types spoke, but the way these thinking types spoke was clearly coming from a place of caring – and understanding.  I also heard some of the feeling types wax a bit philosophical – and in anyone else at any other time, one might have said impersonal.  But it did give perspective.  And it clearly wasn’t the feeling type being in the grip of their thinking (nor was it the thinking types being in the grip of their feeling).  In neither case did it have that kind of exaggerated one-sided quality that comes with the grip experience.

In short, the Thinking types pretty evidently had feeling and the Feeling types pretty evidently had thinking. And both cared about this friend and colleague who had passed.  And they showed that caring in different ways – in ways that drew on both head and heart.

This reminds me a bit of the “languages of love” we read about these days. Some people show love through acts of service, some through touch, some through words.  Same thing with type. Love is shown in different ways. Loss is experienced in different ways. Caring is shown in different ways.

We will all miss our friend and colleague.


• Learn more about being in the grip (that often hidden part of our personality), and differences in the process of grieving.


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