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What are shadow traits in mbti?

What are shadow traits in mbti?

As mentioned earlier, shadow functions are the opposite of primary functions. Let us look at the cognitive and shadow functions of the INFJ in detail now:

Cognitive Functions

Like all MBTI functions, INFJ also has four cognitive functions.

1. Introverted intuition – Ni

The first of these MBTI functions is the internal or introverted intuition. This is a dominant function and it describes how the INFJ perceives the inner world. It also commands the function to conclude received information. Ni functions by consuming large amounts of information for dealing with problems in a holistic manner. INFJs intellectually perceive events or people as a whole trying to connect dots, finding patterns in otherwise unconnected data. Since this is based purely on intuition, Ni is expressed in a relatively intangible abstract way.

This method of information gathering makes the INFJs feel as though their inner world is always changing, despite the fact that they are also under the impression that they know the external world at large.

2. Extraverted feeling – Fe

This is the first extroverted function of the INFJ. This function comes to life when the INFJ interacts with the outside world on day to day basis. It also depends on how the INFJs process their sentiments. As an extrovert, INFJ often perceives their emotional reactions based on the emotions and responses of the people around them. This gives them a much-needed insight into the feeling of others and they occasionally allow themselves to absorb others' emotions in an empathic manner.

Such deeply intense and turbulent emotions pave way for INFJs to lead a highly developed inner emotional life. Simultaneously it also makes the lives of INFJs highly sensitive to the words and actions of people around them. This makes them see the world from the perspective of their emotions only.

For example, an INFJ hears that their department has lost its jobs at work. So instead of having more practical concerns, an INFJ will most likely consider the feelings of others. 

3. Introverted thinking - Ti

Introverted thinking is the third cognitive function of the INFJ. This is a logical process and it operates on individual logic internally. Rather, INFJs come up with their own logical reasoning based on their internal intuition which helps them to understand the world and reach certain value judgments. Additionally, this function helps the INFJ interpret the data that their Ni brings to them. Most of the time, INFJs process events that they witness in the world outside using their inner intuition which is based on their personal experiences. 

It can also be put this way that INFJs use their introverted thinking to understand the

complexities that introverted thinking brings to the table. The Ni function helps the INFJ to

recognize the connection between people or things but it is the Ti that helps the human brain to interpret this information and reach a conclusion.

4. Extraverted Sensing – Se

This is the final and fourth function in the cognitive category. It is one of the least developed

functions and enables the INFJ to be aware of what is around them and appreciate their physical movements. Since this function isn’t well developed, it is usually in the heads of the INFJs. They experience difficulty remaining in the present moment and connecting with the outside world.

This also highlights the fact that INFJs find the outside world pretty stressful or stimulating for their likes. However, the Se function comes to the rescue and helps INFJ appreciate the moments every now and then. In moments of emotional turbulence, INFJ resort to focusing on cravings or bad habits. They also turn to the temporary rescue like a favorite food or perfume.

Continue: What are shadow functions?

Here are some resources I recommend:

Shadow Work for Beginners is based on my in-depth research and personal experiences with shadow work, projection, sadomasochism, inner child healing, triggers, and all things shadow. This course is updated every year and gets new content at no additional cost.


Shadow Work for Relationships teaches you everything you need to know about attachment theory, practical inner work, and your dysfunctional behavior. By the end of this, you will have developed your earned secure attachment style so you can put an end to your cycle of bad relationships.


A Light Among Shadows is a guide on self-love and being. This short course goes over consciousness, spirituality, philosophy, and makes sense of why people are the way they are. Recommended for people dealing with resentment and self-hate. Learn more here.

Shadow Work Journal: 240 Daily Shadow Work Prompts contains inner work exercises related to relationships, anger, anxiety, self-love, healing trauma, abandonment issues, depression, forgiveness, etc.

Manifestation Manual: The Path of Least Resistance bundle teaches you some holistic and systems thinking along with how to mend your inner child wounds so you can align with your higher self and move forward in life. This includes 20 video clips as a free bonus.

Shadow Play (or “DsR”) is a small sister website that goes over “sensual” shadow work through my BDSM experiences. If you are 18+ and are interested, go here.

Inner Shadow Work on TikTok and Instagram.

Subscribe to get your free ebook 30 Shadow Work Prompts



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