Download Episode Hereright click link and select “Save Link As…”

In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about the 3 styles of cognitive function loops. In this first of a two-part series, we cover the four perceiving functions of “Memory” (Introverted Sensing), “Perspectives” (Introverted Intuition), Exploration (Extraverted Intuition), and “Sensation” (Extraverted Sensing). We show how each of these cognitive functions show up at the 10-Year-Old (or Tertiary) position in the cognitive function stack for the INFP, INTP, ISFP, ISTP, ENFJ, ESFJ, ENTJ, and ESTJ types.
In part 2, we will talk about the four judging cognitive functions.

In this podcast you’ll find:

  • Car Model
  • A cognitive function loop is when the Driver and 10 yr old take over the car.
  • It usually results in unhealthy behaviors.
  • This loop creates an echo chamber where your chosen attitude is your entire scope.
  • Our Copilot keeps us balanced by being of the opposite attitude as our Driver.
  • The 10 yr old is the same attitude as the Driver, which is more comfortable for us.
  • If you are an introvert, your 10 yr old is introverted.
  • If you’re an extravert, your 10 yr old is also extraverted.
  • The loop keeps us from the wisdom of our Copilot.
  • The Copilot can feel threatening because it is so different from our Driver.
  • Today we are dealing with the 4 Perceiving functions.
  • There are 3 variants of intensity for this cognitive function loop:
  • An immediate momentary flare-up of response. It is usually short,
  • intense, and circumstantial.
  • A Long-term strategy or tool you employ when you need it. It will continue until you figure out a different approach. It can extend your whole life until you figure it out.
  • A Chronic mindset. This has become part of your identity. Usually unconscious. How you experience life.
  • The third one is the most problematic because it is more subterranean and hardest to break free from.
    • 10 yr old is Extraverted Intuition – Exploration”
    • ESFJ Loop – Extraverted Feeling (“Harmony”) and Extraverted Intuition
    • ESTJ Loop – Extraverted Thinking (“Effectiveness”) and Extraverted Intuition
    • In a loop, the Copilot is avoided.
    • The Copilot for ESJs – Introverted Sensing
    • Introverted Sensing (“Memory”) is a very responsible process that taps into the unique human experience and accepts what needs to be accepted. Can be quirky.
    • It helps ESJs to look at their progress or lack thereof.
    • It encourages sympathy for others.
    • When an ESJ is avoiding responsibility, and they don’t want to develop patience, their first line of defense is impulsiveness.
    • Can look like overindulgence or uncharacteristic irresponsibility.
    • Usually momentary. ESJs can’t sustain constant impulsiveness.
    • Can look like a ridiculous decision to the outside world, like eloping, quitting their job suddenly, or buying a new car.
    • The second tool of looping can look like blame-casting.
    • Usually happens due to a feeling of being unfairly assessed by others.
    • ESJs use Extraverted Intuition to find a pattern in the outside world that matches how they are feeling internally.
    • It is effectively a style of projection.
    • “It’s not me; it’s you.”
    • Anytime they don’t want to accept responsibility for whatever is going on they turn it around onto the other person who is blaming them.
    • Tu Quoque Podcast
    • The third style of looping for ESJs is taking shortcuts.
    • Not wanting to do the due diligence to get the result for which they are looking.
    • They use pattern recognition to find opportunities or novel approaches to get the return they want as quickly as possible.
    • Introverted Sensing knows it takes time to build anything.
    • But if the ESJ avoids their Copilot, they create a lifestyle of shortcuts.
    • It may look like the tendency to avoid paying attention to the family to give preference to fictional relationships.
    • This prevents the ESJ from ever getting what they want.
    • Luck becomes a retirement plan.
    • They don’t see themselves taking all these shortcuts.
    • They see it as hacking the system.
    • 10 yr old is Extraverted Sensing – “Sensation”
    • ENFJ Loop – Extraverted Feeling (“Harmony”) and Extraverted Sensing
    • ENTJ Loop – Extraverted Thinking (“Effectiveness”) and Extraverted Sensing
    • Sensation is all about physical, in the moment, visceral connection.
    • It is so action oriented it doesn’t over complicate things.
    • It sees the direct route to whatever needs to be done.
    • It gets good at pushing the limitations of the physical world.
    • It is a strength for SPs.
    • For ENJs, they are trying to avoid Introverted Intuition.
    • They need to slow down because the Perspectives process is very fragile and requires a lot of quiet to allow insights to emerge.
    • If an ENJ doesn’t want to slow down, they will avoid Perspectives and go to their tertiary.
    • The first defensive stance usually occurs when they are feeling hurt by the outside world or are looking for fast results.
    • It can look like aggression.
    • Power vs Force book
    • Or it can become monkey mind = massive distraction.
    • An attempt to take action in order to make the problem go away.
    • One is proactive. The other is defensive.
    • The second style is a strategy that they use to manage their image.
    • Sensation is good at picking up on body language.
    • When the ENJ doesn’t want to go to their copilot, they will allow other people’s feedback to determine their value or worth.
    • It becomes all about image management.
    • To other people, it looks like extreme confidence when in reality it is covering over weaknesses.
    • Image mgmt can be allowing people to believe what they want to believe without correcting them.
    • That can be stressful because the truth may come out and expose the ENJ.
    • Joe vs. Volcano “I know he can get the job but can he do the job?”
    • The ENJ can always get the job, but can they do the job?
    • The third style is a life of sensory self-indulgence.
    • “I only do what feels good to me.”
    • If you are shutting off the feedback from the future implications of your action and you want to be super indulgent, some ENJs live a life of massive self-indulgence.
    • Can be video games (ENTJ), or emotional eating (ENFJ).
    • There is a pattern of impatience with all of these EJs.
    • “I don’t have the time to spend to get into my introverted Copilot.”
    • All EJ types look to the outside world to measure their results and see how they are doing. This creates an urgency that they can’t slow down or it will hijack their ability to get things done.
    • Sometimes it wants to get the return without the work.
    • Both Memory and Perspectives understand timelines.
    • 10 yr old is Introverted Intuition – “Perspectives”
    • ISTP Loop – Introverted Thinking (“Accuracy”) and Introverted Intuition
    • ISFP Loop – Introverted Feeling (“Authenticity”) and Introverted Intuition
    • Perspectives creates meaning from patterns within itself.
    • As a 10 yr old, it can misinterpret things.
    • Being proven wrong is very painful to IPs.
    • Their judging process is hugely subjective.
    • So when they get the message that they are wrong, it feels like it fractures their ego.
    • This is why they skip the Copilot because outer world feedback can contradict their judgment.
    • With Perspectives you can find any pattern within yourself if you try hard enough.
    • Sensation interprets reality as it is presented.
    • So the ISPs shut out the objective info and shoehorn a pattern from within to support their position.
    • They can literally make something up by projecting what they want onto the outside world.
    • That’s the first line of defense.
    • It’s like telling a story to yourself about something and convincing yourself it happened even though it didn’t.
    • Others easily see this defensive position because it is obvious to what did and did not happen.
    • The second style of looping is strategy looping.
    • A position of not wanting to do anything that the driver doesn’t want to do.
    • It is often in support of an indulgent position.
    • Can show up as anxiety or paranoia.
    • Anxiety renders one incapable of taking action.
    • Sensation gets people into action immediately to keep things from spiraling out of control.
    • Sensation says: “Don’t overcomplicate it. Just do it.”
    • If the ISP is avoiding Sensation, they may not be particularly motivated.
    • So they will find an excuse to avoid getting into action.
    • “It’s just going to turn out bad anyway.”
    • “People are against me.”
    • A retreative stance.
    • The third style of looping comes on the heels of the second.
    • Second says, “I don’t want to do that. So, I can grab my tool of anxiety/paranoia and don’t do anything I don’t want to do.”
    • The third style is a lifestyle.
    • The ISP has decided they don’t need to do anything they don’t want to do.
    • “I’m different. I don’t have to integrate with society. I am an exception to all the rules.”
    • “Nobody sees things as I see them. I am special and unique.”
    • Their 10 yr old creates fantasies that it is acceptable for them to live outside the normal requirements of society.
    • In extreme cases the person may isolate themselves from society all together and project how wrong the world is compared to them.
    • These are examples of how people can become the worst versions of their type.
    • On the other side, they may become anarchists and fight society for self-centered reasons.
    • They prize the goal of avoiding integration at all costs.
    • 10 yr old is Introverted Sensing – “Memory.”
    • INTP Loop – Introverted Thinking (“Accuracy”) and Introverted Sensing
    • INFP Loop – Introverted Feeling (“Authenticity”) and Introverted Sensing
    • Ego fears feedback because the idea that they may be wrong is jarring.
    • The first line of defense is to retreat to a safety zone.
    • Memory is about the familiar. Establishing traditions, comfort, and safety.
    • As a 10 yr old, it mostly looks like different variations of comfort seeking.
    • It is usually seen when an INP abruptly leaves an argument, storms out or hangs up the phone angrily.
    • When they see patterns in the outside world that disturb them, they go to comfort and stick with what they already believe.
    • They can also take over the conversation, thereby shutting out input/output.
    • It becomes evident to those around them that they have shut down the conversation because they don’t want to hear something.
    • Sometimes they will call to authority: “I read something that supported my idea, so you are wrong.”
    • We all have a defensive stance, but getting into the Copilot will help alleviate it.
    • These strategies become long term because the person decides to use them as normal coping strategies.
    • The second strategy stays with the theme of comfort thinking, but instead of staying with a comfortable idea they run to physical comfort – not leaving the house, watching Netflix all day, etc.
    • “I’m too stressed, and I can’t do anything at all.”
    • Analysis paralysis.
    • “I can’t adult today.”
    • ISPs anxiety gets in their way.
    • INPs feel too overwhelmed to do anything. So they retreat and check out.
    • “I need more time.”
    • We typically structure our third style of looping in a way that prevents the world from calling us on it.
    • The third style of looping looks like deference. Playing it safe. No risk.
    • If they are super nice to everybody and hand themselves over to everyone else, they never have to change what they think or feel because no one is ever challenging them.
    • Can look like being stuck in a rut. Doing the same thing over and over again.
    • It may look stable to others, but it isn’t the ideal place for the INP.
    • This third style of looping is all the more insidious because it gets a lot of reward from the outside world.
    • But INPs are supposed to challenge the accepted norm.
    • Exploration asks, “What trouble can you get into today?”
    • The theme of all the third styles of looping is ‘death by a thousand cuts.’
    • Every day you are not in your strength is time clocked closer to your death. There is no meaning in life anymore.
    • You have robbed yourself of meaning to establish comfort.
    • EJ – impatience is at the core of all the levels of looping.
    • IP – fear is at the core of all the levels of looping.
    • You never get what you want while you are looping.
    • EJs want return without investment.
    • IPs want to avoid being challenged at any cost.
    • If you never grow you will never receiver the respect you crave.
    • Keep developing your Copilot to become a complete person.
    • The 10 yr old brings delightful flavors when it we use it in support of the Copilot.
    • When an ESJ is using Exploration the right way they stop blame-casting and shortcutting, and they become creative and diversify.
    • When ENJs stop being aggressive and focusing on image management, they start experiencing true meaning in their life and see longer timelines.
    • They become fun and playful.
    • When ISPs stop overcomplicating problems and get realistic they start having a deeper insight and stop taking things at face value.
    • When INPs stop seeing themselves as the only one of their kind, then they can stick with their mission and help the world embody essential concepts.
    • All of our 10 yr olds are significant parts of who we are as long as we recognize that they don’t deserve precedence and should never be called into an argument to support the Driver.
    • Judging functions are coming up next. EPs and IJs.

In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about the 3 styles of cognitive function loops. #MBTI #cognitivefunctions #INFP #INTP #ISFP #ISTP #ENFJ #ENTJ #ESTJ #ESFJ #personalgrowth #myersbriggs

To subscribe to the podcast, please use the links below:

Subscribe with iTunes
Non-iTunes Link
Download The Android App
Subscribe on Soundcloud
Subscribe with Stitcher
Subscribe on Google Play
Subscribe with Facebook Messenger

If you like the podcast and want to help us out in return, please leave an honest rating and review on iTunes by clicking here. It will help the show and its ranking in iTunes immensely! We would be eternally grateful!

Want to learn more?

Discover Your Personal Genius


We want to hear from you. Leave your comments below…


  • Merwin
    • Merwin
    • May 18, 2023 at 12:18 am

    This was such an insightful episode (although I know it’s old). But it confirmed that I do in fact use my Ne auxiliary function and was kind of forced to growing up (I’m an INTP). I traveled a lot as a child and throughout college, learning about the world and other cultures. I did art throughout college. However I went through a lot of childhood trauma that forced me to get out of comfort zone for my own safety. I got therapy along the way that helped me not sink into level 3 of the Ti-Si loop. But I’ve definitely stormed out of a room or hung up on others when I felt my logic being challenged. This was when I was younger. Now I sit patiently and take in the new information, even if it doesn’t make logical sense. But I try to notice the patterns of others people and where those beliefs and illogical fallacies come from.

    Basically this episode helped solidify how I use Extraverted Intuition and how I unknowingly used it to get out ruts at times but also broaden my own understanding of that world.

  • Jonah (from inside the whale)
    • Jonah (from inside the whale)
    • February 17, 2022 at 7:30 pm

    I came here because of a reference to looping in your podcast about defensive patterns in relationships (How Different Personality Types Become Defensive). I listened to this whole thing kind of hoping after hearing these looping patterns that I might find out I am a different type. I heard Klaus Schepers talking about the freedom of realizing he’s a Sensor and being in the moment (ISTP Personality Type Interview) and I thought, “Damn, that sounds nice. Maybe I am mistyped and am actually an S as well.” I am sad to report that I was unable to run away from the patterns of my type. Can’t I please just be anyone else but myself?!?

  • Taylor
    • Taylor
    • January 31, 2021 at 3:35 pm

    I am the same way! It’s like you’re speaking the thoughts in my own mind! I think of the verb “a blossoming” in exactly the same way!

  • Taylor
    • Taylor
    • January 31, 2021 at 3:34 pm

    Hello! I’m an INFP-T, and this really hit the nail on the head for me.

    On the first level, I definitely can look back at my arguments and recognize how I just fundamentally stop listening, even if I am usually a very active and attentive listener.

    On the second level, I see that the past few months have really thrust me into a vulnerable space, and I definitely had a period where I just absolutely isolated myself and sought comfort in television and food.

    On the third level, I spent most of my early life playing it safe and not really taking risks, and only when I went to college and started really challenging myself to step out of the rules and routines of safety I followed as an incredibly anxious child did I start to really grow. Thank you so much for this knowledge! I love hearing my experiences mirrored in so many fundamental ways.

  • William Hydrogen
    • William Hydrogen
    • November 25, 2020 at 3:07 pm

    Thanks super great for this jewelery podcast I think without it wouldn’t recognize the I’m in now days so thank you thank you thank you
    {male INFP-T}

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.