Sensing | Experiential | Empirical

Personality Traits

Personality TraitDescription
IntroversionFocused on inner experiences, preferring solitary or small group interactions.
ExtroversionEnergized by social interactions and external environments.
IntuitionDrawn to theoretical ideas and possibilities, comfortable with uncertainty.
SensingRelies on observable data and experiences to make decisions.
FeelingConsiders emotional impact and values when making choices.
ThinkingUtilizes logical reasoning and facts to reach conclusions.
JudgingValues structure and plans, prefers predictability.
PerceivingFlexible and open, more comfortable with improvisation.

Sensing is often mentioned briefly in discussions about personality, but its facets are rarely unpacked. Sensing is primarily concerned with practical applications and action. It incorporates two core aspects—applied cognition and experiential decision-making.

Applied Cognition: The Engine for Action

Those with a Sensing personality employ applied cognition, focusing on how information can be used in practical terms. This is similar to a mechanic who looks at a car’s engine and immediately understands what needs to be fixed. People with this trait use observable data to solve real-world problems.

The Utility of Applied Cognition

Applied cognition serves a functional role by helping individuals make decisions based on data and personal experiences. For example, if you notice that a specific route to work is often congested, your applied cognition helps you choose an alternative path to save time.

Experiential Decision-Making: The Past Informing the Present

Experiential decision-making involves using past experiences to inform current choices. If applied cognition is the mechanic, experiential decision-making is the seasoned driver who knows how the car handles in different conditions. This trait provides an archive of past situations to draw upon when facing new challenges.

Practical Applications of Experiential Decision-Making

People who lean toward Sensing can use their repository of experiences to navigate challenges efficiently. For instance, a nurse who has handled various emergencies will be adept at choosing the most effective intervention based on the symptoms observed.

Interplay Between Applied and Experiential Strategies

The combination of applied cognition and experiential decision-making offers a well-rounded approach for dealing with both routine and unforeseen challenges. These two aspects reinforce each other, making Sensing types skilled at both implementing solutions and adapting to new circumstances.

Real-World Example

Imagine you’re a Sensing type who is planning a camping trip. Your applied cognition helps you generate a packing list based on essentials and contingencies, while your experiential decision-making recalls past trips to inform what items were truly useful. Together, they ensure a well-prepared and enjoyable adventure.


The Sensing personality trait is multidimensional, combining applied cognition and experiential decision-making to offer a practical and adaptable approach to life’s challenges. Understanding these elements allows us to better recognize the strengths of Sensing types and may also give us insights into our own decision-making processes.

Sensing Personality Types

Personality TypeDescription
ESTJ – The SupervisorValues efficiency and order, inclined toward leadership roles.
ESFJ – The ProviderCommitted to supporting others, often finds joy in social roles.
ISTJ – The InspectorFocused on details and practical applications, values consistency.
ISFJ – The ProtectorConsiders the well-being of others, generally acts in a reliable and caring manner.
ESTP – The DoerSkilled at quickly understanding situations and acting on them.
ESFP – The PerformerEnjoys the limelight and is adept at reading and influencing social atmospheres.
ISTP – The CraftsmanPractical and focused, often enjoys hands-on activities.
ISFP – The ArtistValues aesthetic experiences, often seeks to make the world more beautiful or harmonious.

Sensing Cognitive Functions

Cognitive FunctionDescription
Introverted Sensing (Si)Visual-spatial intelligence
Extroverted Sensing (Se)Nature Intelligence
Sensing PerceivingBodily-Kinaesthetic Intelligence
Sensing JudgingLogistical Intelligence
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