Monday, February 22, 2021

Interview: Rachel

link to video

 

Rachel requested to be interviewed rather than doing a typing video. In my experience typing videos are somewhat better than interviews in that they don't get bogged down in a single subject as much. But interviews do allow for some more flexibility in follow-up questions and targeting specific areas (to distinguish between a specific pair of types for example). In any case, as I note at the end, this interview turned out to be a surprisingly easy one. I came to a conclusion maybe 20 minutes into it. (Spoiler alert: the conclusion is mentioned at 56:45.)

Normally I would do a video interview, but Rachel is blind and her room became quite dark during the interview. I've done other audio interviews, the visual component isn't a great loss.

Rachel is a political science student, and maybe even more tellingly has a job as an assistive technologist. This is telling because, the way Rachel describes it, she fell into this job without intending to: she has a natural way with technology. So we already see some strength of Te. It is also notable that Rachel describes this as a result of her personal success as a student. Throughout the interview Rachel emphasizes the importance of personal responsibility, a Gamma theme. Despite having a disability herself, she is averse to the idea that people should be "babied" and given help unnecessarily - instead they should be helped only enough so that they can become self-reliant and "lift themselves up by their bootstraps", so to speak. This is of course a component of certain political ideologies, but it does suggest a Gamma worldview and particularly the Te triad. Rachel likes tinkering with technology and trying to figure it out by trial and error.

As I mention in the interview, Rachel can be characterized as someone who consumes large quantities of information with a view towards applying it. She has taught herself a wide range of skills/areas of study, including typology, and probably computers and other things. Of course she doesn't always know how she might apply the information in advance, but she has more difficulty with purely abstract areas like philosophy, she prefers to have concrete examples, more like Te than Ti. She mentions caring about the accuracy of the information she acquires, a Te motivation. The breadth of her study also suggests a lot of Ne. Along with her obvious proactivity -- she has a typing service herself, is hands-on with the technology, and even started building a studio herself -- this is already enough to point to LIE.

Rachel does not seem to place much value on emotions. Due to the nature of triads, we should expect an LIE to largely be oblivious to not only Fe but Fi, and not consciously prioritize it. Some examples are her disinterest in overly emotional news and heated arguments, which introduce an element of Fe (with Se). Other LIEs might be more contentious. As for Fi, she tends to often rub people the wrong way. I also mention at the end how SEEs are quite caustic as 4P Se types, yet they have a way of still managing to keep the relationship they want with any particular person, possibly using Fe to smooth things over. Rachel by contrast has had difficulty maintaining her relationships and is often somewhat surprised when they end up falling apart. She is "too direct" and ends up offending people (high Se, 1D Fi). She has no trouble directly engaging in conflict with people - "I was like 'screw you' when I left", "I don't believe in your kind of PC way of doing it". Even some of her closer relationships still seem distant and "not really real friends". Interestingly though she chose to participate in a Best Buddies program where she befriends people with special needs. It's relatively common for people to try to engage their suggestive function in some low-key way in their life, and maybe this is a setting where Rachel can work on developing her Fi. The suggestive function is an unconscious but strong need - Rachel says that she herself isn't sure why she does the program, and she only does it minimally/sporadically, it's easier in small doses (typical of a cautious function).

Rachel shows almost no priority on Fe, which is consistent with the nature of the role function, which is weak and subdued - she is uninterested in socializing for the sake of socializing, seeing it as a waste of time. She also hasn't done much collaboration in her various projects; although it is worth noting that her active nature tends to put her in contact with a lot of people, e.g. discussing things online and helping people at her job. She is also quite talkative and enthusiastic. She gives the example of an ice cream social - she feels "I just need to get ice cream and head out of here", in keeping with LIE's impatient Se-6 in contrast with Si: the idea of relaxing simply for the sake of it is largely antithetical to how she works. She also finds overly detailed physical activities to be taxing, such as jewelry making, crafting, crocheting, etc. Si generally is more present with these kind of things.

Rachel is a natural leader; she describes becoming the boss of a writing group, and ended up liking running the group more than doing the actual writing. Her physical activity is sometimes quite heavy: she once walked 36 miles for a campaign, and took a bold approach to surfing when she was younger. She is very willing to take risks and enjoys a good challenge, so she clearly has some Se. However, her physical activity is also inconsistent; EIEs also tend to swing from extremes of intense activity to doing hardly anything, although LIEs tend to be more consistent in their work habits. This is natural for the mobilizing function, which is sometimes over-used and sometimes somewhat lacking. In any case Se is clearly far more present than Fi - it is very hard to see her as an ILI, for example.

So to summarize, we see a pervasive emphasis on Te, a lot of Se, good Ne, no value on Si, and difficulties with both Fi and Fe, yet some unconscious aspiration towards Fi. All of which points clearly to LIE.

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