The MBTI® Perceiving Preference, which explains how we process information and our subjective views of the world, includes two distinctly opposite preferences: Sensing and Intuition. Those that prefer Sensing take in information from the outside world through their five senses, including sight, smell, sound, taste, and touch, and use this objective information to formulate their ideas based on what is presently concrete and substantial. Intuitive Types, although they do use their five senses, prefer to then develop more insight-driven ideas or opinions, rather than taking the information they perceive purely at face value. While the spectrum associated with this pair gives an overall idea of how individuals take in information, it is also intrinsically linked to other aspects of peoples’ personalities, such as communication styles, career decisions, and more.

The differences that occur across the Myers-Briggs® Sensing-Intuition spectrum may not be the most detrimental to relationships, but they are definitely important to recognize and work towards coming to an understanding over—especially if an individual’s preference one way or another affects how communication occurs in a relationship. Couples in which one is assessed as a Myers-Briggs Sensing Type and the other Intuitive, often have to work harder in order to fully understand what the other has to say then those couples that share the same MBTI Sensing-Intuition Personality Preference.

image courtesy of photostock /

image courtesy of photostock /

Myers-Briggs Relationships with The Two Opposite Sensing and Intuition Personality Types

Couples made up of one who is assessed as an MBTI Sensing Type and one that is assessed as an MBTI Intuitive Type are more common than one may think, as the two ends of the spectrum are often allured by the differences of their opposite. For example, a Myers-Briggs Sensing Type admires the creativity and inventive nature of the Intuitive Type, while at times, the Intuitive Type finds the Sensing Type to be a refreshing, down-to-earth alternative to their more abstract mindset. MBTI Intuitive Types enjoy the logical thought processes and present mindfulness of their Sensing Type opposites, which helps them live more in that moment in reality and less in their heads.

Similarly to the dichotomy of Introverted and Extraverted individuals, the two sides of the Perceiving Preference—Sensing MBTI Types and Intuitive MBTI Types—can both use their differences to balance one another and can feel as though their differences keep them apart. The main problem that a couple with such differing Perceiving Preferences will encounter is a failure to communicate effectively—that is, occasionally, one or both of the partners will have a hard time understanding, realizing, or grasping the others’ communication style and nature of delivering information. Their differing perceptions can lead one sentence to be interpreted vastly differently by both individuals, and the real meaning is construed into something else entirely. Where once their differences may have drawn them to each other, amidst conflict, they can find one another almost insufferable and the process can be draining. For this reason, it is truly important that the beginning of a relationship involves a mutual understanding of the differences presented in the couple, with a proactive decision to work toward better understanding of how to communicate in these situations so as to avoid further conflict.

Relationships with Two Sensing Personality Types

Whereas individuals of two differing preferences may be drawn to one another in the initial stages of Myers-briggs relationships, those couples that are made up of the same preference are often increasingly more successful. These couples often have very similar communication styles and techniques, leading to better understanding and less misconceptions or overly analyzing relationship situations. In the case of two Sensing Types, the couple is (together and separately) incredibly logical, taking information as it is, and living in the present as opposed to spending the present moment worrying about other things—namely underlying meanings that others may think of. However, in the face of conflict, Sensing Types occasionally revert to their complete opposite traits, dwelling on all of the possibilities that could become a problem.

Relationships with Two Intuitive Personality Types

When two MBTI Intuitive Types are in a relationship, communication styles have the potential to match up well, as long as the other preferences are also relatively similar (this tends to help throughout the Perceiving Preferences). Intuitive Types enjoy spirited conversation and exchanging opinions and ideas, and they tend to understand what is truly implied by cryptic or less-than-honest discussion. Couples with two Intuitive Types tend to get along because they both respect and understand the other’s tendency to live in their own heads and their desire for excitement and novelty. Unfortunately, this can cause both individuals to become bored or unexcited by routine or repetition. It can even become a real problem in the relationship, as one individual in the couple may expect the other to complete certain commonplace or unexciting tasks—this could include anything from cooking and cleaning to running errands and managing finances. This is an especially sensitive subject when these duties fall on the woman’s shoulders a majority of the time.

Getting Along with your Opposite Sensing or Intuitive Type Personality

There are also techniques that each individual can employ in order to better understand and get along with their opposite personality type (or even their preference match). For example, Sensing Types are often receptive to acknowledgement and appreciation of his or her common sense and mindfulness, so praising their aptitude for living in the moment will please them. An MBTI Test Sensing Type’s tendencies to be active in completing even the simplest of everyday tasks such as cooking and household chores is also something that should be complimented and verbally appreciated as well as reciprocated. To bring yourself to a Sensor’s level of enjoyment with all things tangible, it behooves you to engage in an activity that stimulates the senses, such as cooking, gardening, building, outdoor activities, attending sporting or music events, or anything else that provides excitement and presents happiness. In addition, it’s helpful to physically stimulate the Sensing Types with activities such as massages and other physical forms of intimacy.

As can be expected, although couples with the same preference may occasionally experience conflict, a couple formed by individuals of each preference will have a harder time with communication and understanding. However, this does not stop plenty of couples from being happy and compatible, it just means that they need to work harder on their relationship. Depending on couple’s similarities of the other three preferences, a couple can have success and happiness as long as each person is actively working to remain open minded about their partner’s worldviews and communication techniques. In fact, with a mutual understanding and reverence for the other’s differences in perception, both individuals can provide a balance for one another and the relationship as a whole. Understanding and listening to one another’s views can open the partner’s minds and teach them to be more sympathetic and considerate of other people’s opinions.

Tips for Healthy Myers-Briggs Relationships with Sensing Personality Types

When it comes to a Myers-Brigg’s Sensing Type’s thoughts, feelings, and opinions, it’s best to be patient and allow them to fully state what is on his or her mind. As they ask you questions or wish to know your opinions, give them an honest and applicable answer. If they are asking for something specific, they will expect a specific answer in return. In giving them your opinions and ideas, it’s best to emphasize their applicability, so that the Sensor can have faith in that what you are proposing makes sense and will come out all right in the end. Lying or making implications not based off of knowledge or logic will make Sensing Types feel as though they cannot trust or believe you. Help the Sensor understand where you’re coming from by conveying your own thoughts openly and coherently, leaving no room for reading between the lines or underlying meanings. The more clearly one speaks to a Sensing Type, the more easily the communication will flow and the more each partner will be on the same page.

Tips for a Healthy Relationship with an Intuitive Personality

With The MBTI Test Intuitive Personality Type, there are also several techniques to consider if you’d like to have a healthy interaction or relationship with them. For example, editing the details of your day into a few specific high points will keep them interested and will help with the balance of information that occurs. It’s also best to not bring up any unfulfilled ideas or to expect that every idea that an Intuitive vocalizes is one that they plan on carrying out. Oftentimes, when Intuitive Type’s share ideas they can just be brainstorming, and they aren’t necessarily going to follow through on every idea that surfaces. Another way to encourage an Intuitive’s thoughts and sharing of opinions is to allow them to convey their big-picture concepts without commenting on whether or not they are logical or sound. This is also true when it comes to working with an Intuitive on something. They enjoy being more involved in the creative process and less worried about the more miniscule details. When you can, try to fulfill this role for them without bothering them with too many details or practical functionalities.

Another way to get along with an Intuitive (and to stimulate your own imagination) is to brainstorm and daydream about the future with them, planning out different goals that you would both like to accomplish, even if there are reasons that would hold you back from fulfilling these things. Just the act of being creative and imaginative with the Intuitive will bring you closer. During these times, it’s also good to compliment the Intuitive on his or her imagination and originality. Employing these techniques will truly help your relationship become stronger, and will promote understanding and communication between you and your partner.

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