Feb 16, 2016

Socionics Residue

It's been three years since I officially renounced socionics. I still subscribe to everything I wrote at the time. I no longer place any importance on socionics types — particularly my own. I disagree with the theory and believe it is fundamentally, hopelessly flawed.

At yet I find myself passively typing people on some subconscious level, even though I don't even care. I've had a number of relationships over the past couple years, and I've pursued women based on romantic attraction alone. It truly makes zero difference to me what type someone is or whether I can even identify their type. I never stop and think, "I wonder what her or his type is."

If I'm in a relationship with someone and it occurs to me that she is an IEI, it makes no practical difference to me. There are attractive and unattractive IEIs, nice ones and not-so-nice, compatible and incompatible. I never attribute "success" or "failure" in a relationship to type. There are always better, more immediate explanations: I am or am not what she is looking for at this stage in life, the attraction between us is deep or merely situational, etc.

On a conscious level I think more about a person's hormones and neurotransmitters, their aims and values, the type of energy that exists between us, and what I am bringing to the table. That is the intellectual framework that has replaced socionics.

Nonetheless, if I dig up the subconscious typing that is going on, I see some interesting patterns:


  • most of my guy friends are intuiters 
  • I go almost exclusively for irrational women
  • it seems I have a slight romantic preference for ethical types or have no preference either way (roughly 70% of women are ethical)
  • it makes no difference to me whether a girl is sensing or intuitive
  • I never go for IEEs (presumably my own type, though I obviously don't care), at least IEEs who have a similar brain chemistry to my own
  • I prefer for a romantic partner to be more introverted and less dominant than I
I'm currently taking singing lessons from a female SLE who is clearly attracted to me. It's a lot easier than working with a male SLE guitar teacher was. Things got better still when the female SLE teacher had me start attending lessons at a music school where she holds lessons together with an IEI accompanist. With the good energy between the two of them it is very comfortable working with the SLE. I see no reason to believe that our interaction will turn sour. It feels very stable. 

My male SLE guitar teacher was (is) married to an IEI who was often in the house when I came over for lessons. Nonetheless, I had the feeling that there was some tension between them and that the IEI was not exactly happy. The SLE had a difficult personality, smoked incessantly, and was 25 years older than his wife. Eventually she left. But then she came back. I had a major personality clash with the SLE. But was it about his socionic type, which is, after all, just an abstraction? Or was it about his intolerable smoking, his domineering personality, inability to listen, or his tendency to talk off topic? 


I have two male friends — IEI and LIE — with whom I meet regularly to discuss self-improvement and practical philosophy. A couple months ago I introduced them to each other. Afterwards the LIE complained extensively to me of how the IEI talked on and on without getting to the point and showed no interest in maintaining contact. I hadn't clearly seen this problem area in my IEI friend until this moment. Since then it has been annoying me as well.

5 comments:

K Lamb said...

Hello Rick, do you have an email address I could contact you on? Thanks so much!

Rick said...

Yes, you can find my email at frictionlessmastery.com

Marjorie Jean said...

This is incredibly funny. Sad how you and LIE ganged up on the poor IEI at the end. Now you feel bad, huh (Creative Fi)? Now you don't again because I mentioned it (Creative Fi/PoLR Ti). Admit it, the theory is ingrained, part of you. There's no turning back, only turning away.. Great writing, by the way.

Rick said...

That's not what happened! People leave destructive cults all the time. Theoretical constructs can be overwritten, just like the contents of a hard drive. To overwrite beliefs, however, you need new beliefs that provide more satisfying explanations for the same set of phenomena. You need to do quite a lot of thinking and study to remove socionics residue, since there aren't that many good theories of relationship development out there. But I feel like I've done about 80% of the work. My ongoing interest in hormones, neurotransmitters, and evolutionary psychology helps a lot with that.

Marjorie Jean said...

If one leaves a destructive cult, I would think, one ought not automatically replace one set of beliefs with another. Rather, stop and think, get to the heart of the matter, "Well, why did I fall into that trap in the first place?" "How was it that I was so blind?" "What void was I trying to fill?" "What dirty tactics am I susceptible to?" Replacing one theory with another equates to leaving one cult for another. The real path to reformation and growth is found within. Once we find the answers to those hard questions, the next step would be to connect with others and nature. That's how one accomplishes cleansing, going beyond overwriting to (re)formatting one's hard drive.