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One more word about “guessing” type – Part 2

One more word about “guessing” type – Part 2

Written by Catherine Rains

From my post last week, I’m certainly not suggesting that we flex to every person we meet, but rather when appropriate to the situation.  Flexing to someone else’s type is simply a tool that helps me to communicate more effectively with others who do not share my dominant and auxiliary functions.  I would be communicating the same message whether I use my dominant and auxiliary or theirs, but my message might be better understood if communicated in the type language of the person in front of me.  

It’s important to remember that we all have access to all four functions; however some of the functions will be easier for us to use than others.  I easily and most often use my dominant (1st) and auxiliary(2nd), but I also effectively use my tertiary(3rd) and inferior(4th) if it’s more appropriate depending on the situation and the person with whom I’m talking.  Sometimes I choose to flex to my 3rd and 4th because I think the person in front of me could hear my message clearer if I communicated in their native type language (their 1st and 2nd) rather than my own 1st and 2nd.  Good type development is the ability to use all four functions appropriately, but not with equal skill, depending on the situation and the type of the person in front of you.
The process of using flexing type was best described by Isabel Myers herself –
“Once a man has full control of his first and second functions . . . he knows not only their strengths but also their deficits, not only how to use them but also when not to use them because the opposite function or attitude is more appropriate. Then he can, in some measure, control the use of these . . ., crossing over at need from that which is natural to that which is appropriate.”

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