ENFP cognitive functions relate to those specific psychological workings that make them who they are. These exclusive functions define their social interaction, choices, and decision making habits as well.
The energetic and enthusiastic ENFP prefers to live life to the fullest. They are lively, outspoken, and talkative, and have varied interests that make them distinct Myers Briggs types.
ENFPs are the life of the party. Their positive mindset illuminates the life of those who feel low and hopeless. They have the power to bring smiles to just anyone and everyone. Their cognitive functions depict their underlying processes that make them an exclusive being.
Let us get into the details of these cognitive functions in this post.
ENFP Cognitive Functions
All the 16 personality types elaborated in Myers Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI) have four cognitive functions. Out of these four functions, the first two are dominant and auxiliary functions. These two have the maximum influence on the person’s behavior.
The later ones are the tertiary and inferior functions that have lesser influence on a person’s personality dynamics.
From an ENFP, Extroverted intuition (Ne) is the dominant function. This function allows them to explore freely, think about multiple ideas and share them with others around them.
ENFPs have introverted feeling (Fi) as an auxiliary function. This function makes them make decisions based on emotions.
They are kind, considerate, and compassionate as well. Introverted feeling also makes an ENFP morally strong and ethical. They will never give up their values for anything in life.
ENFPs have extraverted thinking (Te) as tertiary function. This cognitive function helps them play with diverse ideas and find connections between abstract ideologies. They think out of the box that none other have thought out so far.
For ENFPs, inferior function is the fourth in the functional stack. They use introverted sensing (Si) as the least developed function in the hierarchy. Because of inferior quality, ENFPs may struggle to implement their enriched ideas into actions.
They may lose focus and leave things half way. Moreover, these people hate mundane, routine tasks. They cannot do things in a focused manner for a long time.
ENFPs can become inconsistent, unreliable if asked to do a 9 to 5 job. They cannot stick to rules and regulations strictly and may get caught in boredom and lose their ability to perform completely.
Before we move on with the detailed description of the cognitive functions, let us understand the four-letter word ENFP down the line:
1. Extroversion (E)
ENFPs derive their energy from social networking. They love to interact with diverse groups of people and learn things in innovative ways.
Being an extrovert, ENFPs are friendly, caring, and understand the needs of others. They are approachable and people get attracted to their charismatic nature.
People with ENFP personality are social butterflies. They love to roam around, have parties, visit places, and learn about diverse cultures.
Given the best communication style, ENFPs love social engagement that is rich and helpful. They may not get involved in casual discussions too often but looks forward to deeper learning.
Being an intuitive personality, ENFPs think about the bigger picture in life. They use present and past knowledge and draw conclusions about possibilities that may happen in future. These people use gut feeling, the innate hunch to derive logical conclusions of circumstances and events in life.
ENFPs have an inner voice that helps them to decide whether things are right or wrong. They are creative, imaginative, idealists who believe in the power of gut feeling.
People with ENFP personality types prefer to create ideas and imaginations. You may find them spending a lot of quality time in their heads, analyzing things intuitively. ENFPs can read people’s minds.
They are watchful, yet prefer to remain quiet and submissive unless required to speak their mind openly. ENFPs are the dreamers. They get busy seeing future possibilities and may ignore current endeavors. This leads to unfinished tasks as well.
3. Feeling (F)
ENFPs have introverted feeling as an auxiliary cognitive function. Thus they are warm, sensitive, and humble. They put a lot of emphasis on understanding the feelings of others. With their own feelings, they are not that expressive.
ENFPs are emotional and pay attention to values. Since, they are rules by their hearts, they tend to take decisions emotionally that may not be rational always
The ENFP personality type is tactful and overcomes challenges easily. They do not believe in putting up a fight, rather prefer to do things in such a way, so that harmony and peace prevails around them.
Being a sensitive type, they prefer not to be judged openly and in such times, they may act weird and feel overwhelmed and irritated.
4. Perceiving (P)
ENFPs are spontaneous and volatile. Their personality type tends to change as per the requirements of the situation. Thus, they are flexible and remain open to new ideas and imaginations.
ENFPs are also spontaneous and easygoing. They hate routine lifestyles and prefer to stay less organized in their daily lives.
People with an ENFP personality type are carefree and look for so many things in life. They love variety and novelty above anything less, rather never compromises on these two things.
The description of cognitive functions
As already mentioned, there are four cognitive functions that make ENFPs who they are. We will make an attempt to discuss these functions in a detailed manner in this section of the article.
1. Dominant function: Extraverted intuition (Ne)
This function is the most powerful one in the ENFP functional stack. Because of this function, ENFPs can navigate in different ideas and imaginations and can use these ideas in drawing inferences about future possibilities.
They can explore ideas multiple ways and speak these aloud. Since they have great networking ability, they even share it with others with a hope of collaborating towards a bigger goal.
- Ne helps them to see the bigger picture and not hang on to the present situation.
- ENFPs are not scared to know the unknown even if they do not know the answer. Rather, they get excited that they developed an urge to know the unknown.
- Extroverted intuition helps them to connect the dots and derive logical conclusions that others will easily miss out. They are good at evaluating situations and draw patterns that actually led to the event.
- ENFPs are okay with abstract concepts and ambiguous ideas. Thus, they love creating out of the box solutions to problems.
- Since ENFPs rely mostly on extroverted intuition, they never see the details. They overlook the details that are necessary and tend to focus on the bigger picture.
- Sometimes, they will miss out important details just by assuming that things are not as serious as they appear.
- Extraverted intuition also leads to the fickle-minded nature of an ENFP. They may feel that they are unable to focus on one particular thing, rather getting distracted too often.
2. Auxiliary function: Introverted feeling (Fi)
ENFPs use this as a secondary function. The decision making is based on an internal set of values and emotions rather than on logic and rationality. ENFPs can make gut decisions as they rely on what they believe to be right and authentic.
- Introverted feelers decide with their hearts. It means they ignore facts that could be real and overlook evidence that could be right. These individuals have a high moral compass and never do anything unethical.
- They try to become better every day by following strict values that guide moral behavior.
- ENFPs are genuine and sensitive. Thus, they are drawn towards relationships that are safe, secure, and authentic. People with this personality type are always in search of committed and truthful relationships.
- They can take a stand on something even if it is not the usual one. ENFPs prefer to stand away from the crowd or not follow others blindly.
- Though they are flexible and open-minded in learning new things, ENFPs strong set of values can be seen by others as too rigid and stubborn.
- At times, ENFPs may also feel like a failure if they cannot live life as per their moral code of conduct. This could make them feel like a setback situation that will be hard to overcome.
- Being an introverted feeler, they resist doing the same mistake all over again because it lowers their self-esteem and harms their image to a large extent.
3. Tertiary function: Extroverted thinking (Te)
Te is the opposite of Fi. Thus, ENFPs have less of Te and more of Fi. It makes the person rely on feelings and gut hunches to make decisions.
ENFPs never use logic and objective analysis to understand issues around them. They think with their heart and thus make many hasty decisions that they repent later on.
- When they develop their Te function, they no longer get hung up with Fi functions. This means instead of a faulty, snap decision based on feelings, they would prefer to think and develop logical perspective to decision making.
- Extroverted thinking helps them to develop their logical power, relying more on factual information and objective data while making an important life decision.
- The more of extroverted thinking means they will stay grounded to the situation and not overlook the details that were important.
- It is important that ENFPs learn to combine their Fi and The function together so that they can balance out their weaknesses in a better way.
- If they use too much of logical thinking, it may happen that they lose touch with their creative potential. Thus, maintaining a proper balance is a must.
4. Inferior function: Introverted sensing (Si)
ENFPs have introverted sensing as the least developed cognitive function in their functional hierarchy. Since this is not well-developed, ENFPs struggle to sense information from their immediate surroundings.
- ENFPs cannot rely on sensory impressions. He struggles to adjust with new situations quickly but slowly gets accustomed to it.
- If they develop their introverted sensing function, they will be able to build a comprehensive and coherent opinion about how everything operates in reality.
- These people find it hard to implement plans into decisive actions. They may lose focus and track of things due to their laid back attitude.
To Sum Up
As the ENFPs operate on extroverted intuition, it influences their personality and overall behavior patterns in a big way. It helps them to find connections between unrelated things.
ENFPs use their functions to make meaningful social connections. They are honest and loyal and expect the same level of devotion from others. If they do not get it, they may avoid such people altogether.
ENFP cognitive functions show how these individuals perceive information, process it, and derive conclusions on the way. These functions also say a lot of things about their inner workings and overall world views.
Chandrani is a former school psychologist and teacher by profession. She is a post graduate in Applied psychology with focus in clinical and health domains. Her passion for writing, kindled during school days have now become a full time freelancing endeavor. For her, writing is cathartic and keeps her mentally agile. Her lovable niches includes psychology, parenting, spirituality, lifestyle, and love and relationships. Her work depicts her perspectives about various experiences that she came across; unleashed a richer and deeper meaning of life. "Let me leave an aftertaste in the minds of few, if not many who need to find a path of absolute bliss, happiness, and inner peace."