Watching Feeling in Action

February 2015. Originally copyrighted and posted in "Type for Life" by the Center for the Applications of Psychological Type, Gainesville, FL. Used with permission.

To the uninitiated (in type), I suppose this title is a bit risqué. I am not talking about being a voyeur, but about the wonderful display of the Feeling Function.

Let me begin with a slight digression. I recently started downhill skiing again — I was never very good at it, but my beau is and loves it, so using my Feeling function to create harmony I go skiing in the Colorado Rockies once a year. We typically stay in an apartment with another couple, Kathy and Dave.

Each morning, I watched Kathy go off to the slopes with her backpack. I asked why she did so and what was in it.

She gave a one word answer…"Raymond!" And then told me the story. One day several years ago, Kathy was going up the chair lift with a friend. Out of the corner of her eye, she spotted a young man lying on the snow at the side of a steep mogul run. (Moguls are mounds of hard compacted snow that take much skill to maneuver around.) Kathy is a nurse and she is a Feeling type. She and her friend skied down to the young man as quickly as they could.

He was wearing only cotton sweat pants and a sweatshirt with no gloves or hat. He was unresponsive, clearly suffering from hypothermia. Kathy sent her friend to get the ski patrol there are quickly as possible.

Kathy said to him, "Hi, my name is Kathy and I'm a nurse. What's your name?"

He mumbled, "Raymond."

Kathy said, "Raymond, you need to do exactly as I say. I'm going to lie down in the snow with my jacket open. You are to lie on top of me and put your hands between my legs. You are suffering from hypothermia and I need to get you warmed up quickly."

Raymond did as he was told. Kathy kept up a conversation with him including, "You may tell your friends whatever you wish about this."

Think about it…how many young men are invited into such a position with an older woman and encouraged to talk about it!!

Just then, Kathy's husband, Dave, was riding up the ski lift with a friend. The friend looked over and said, "Isn't that Kathy lying on her back with a young man on top of her?" They skied over.

The ski patrol was slow in coming but eventually they arrived. They took the young man down the hill, reading him the "riot act" telling him they always had extra clothing to loan out and that he could have died.

As a thank you, ski patrol gave Kathy certificates for complimentary hot chocolate drinks for her entire party at the local ski chalet.

At the end of the day, Kathy and her party walked in to have their drinks. When they did so, they received a standing ovation from other skiers who had seen the drama.

Then some of the women from the honoring party came over, and said, "Our husbands want to know where you're skiing tomorrow. They think their hands will be really cold!" Kathy just laughed. But now she carries a small warming blanket in her backpack to help the future Raymonds.

Kathy used her Feeling function (and her nursing skills) to make Raymond comfortable and she is continually invited to tell that story, forming a bond with others who join the skiing group each year. Her story draws us together. What a wonderful use of Feeling!!