Misc.

Introverts vs Extroverts

Introvert. Extrovert.

If you’re even the slightest familiar with the internet (and since you are reading this, those chances are very high) for certain you’ve heard of these words before.

But what exactly do they mean?

Introvert
1. a shy, reticent person.
  • PSYCHOLOGY
    a person predominantly concerned with their own thoughts and feelings rather than with external things.
Extrovert
1. an outgoing, overtly expressive person.

 

According to Google, introverts are expressed as shy and withdrawn. Meanwhile, the extroverts are described as the theatrical type. Introverts + extroverts are commonly conveyed like their stereotypes, and unfortunately, both are branded by these tropes.

In reality, introversion and extroversion are measured by which environment a person is stimulated. Typically, an introvert prefers a night in with Netflix, while an extrovert is recharged through constant social interaction. However, it is important to note that expect no person to be true to this nature, so extroversion + introversion traits often collide.

In this post I’m going to compare & contrast these character traits honestly, as well as how to handle both introverts + extroverts. Hopefully I can clear up any misunderstanding you might have about yourself and others 🙂

Without further ado, let’s just get right into it. 

Introverts

In my honor, I’m going to begin with introverts.

Personally, I consider myself an introvert. Although I’m not entirely inept at socializing that’s for another time I ultimately prefer the comfort of crisp white sheets, steaming hot tea, and a good book. But it’s not like I’m against being surrounded by people. Introverts love people, just in doses. Granted, they usually prefer a closely knit group of people, such as friends or family.

An introvert stereotype is that shy people and introverts are one in the same. This is not true. Shy people are people who appear closed at first, but soon grow comfortable with people and let down their walls. Introverts, on the other hand, can be comfortable with someone in an instant, but place alone time above all else. Despite the fact they might be found similar, they are for certain not the same.

A second stereotype is that introverts despise people. I’ve never heard such a false accusation. Who ever said we don’t like people? Needing a break from socializing in a world that’s never silent is no crime. Introverts tend to gravitate toward their inner circle, however, the people who they deem most loyal and kind and inviting. If you find yourself inside their group, consider yourself a lucky one, for you can’t be a better friend.

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Worst of all, a stereotype is that an introvert can simply be “fixed.” As if our lifestyle and virtues are less than an extrovert. The night of the Me Before You premiere I don’t even want to think about that movie right now my father told me, “I was alone all night.” When I ask what’s wrong with that, he asked, “What isn’t?” When I spilled that I was an introvert, he was silent for a moment. Eventually he murmured, “We might have to fix that.” Outraged, I gave him the glare.

What do you mean fix? I’m perfectly fine as I am, thank you, and I solemnly believe thousands—no, millions—of people would stand with me.

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And who ever said an introvert can’t have fun? 🙂

Extroverts

Okay, it is time to venture into the other territory.

I know a lot of extroverts. Hell, I’m surrounded by extroverts everyday. I’m going to be honest, I’ve discriminated extroverts before. In my defense, it was mainly in response against introverted slurs. However, after writing this post, I’m going to change that.

First off, let’s present some stereotypes. Such as: extroverts aren’t introspective, only like to hear themselves talk, and cannot do things on their own.

The list goes on.

As for the first myth, extroverts are classically known for the “act first, think later” philosophy. Perhaps a handful of extroverts tend to jump into situations without a second thought, but under all circumstances, haven’t we all done that? Introvert, extrovert, or ambivert. We’re all virtually the same in the end.

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“Extroverts only like to hear themselves talk.” This is completely untrue. According to  Brigitte extroverts are unsettled by silence. While introverts are pondering the depth of their mind, extroverts are busy filling the silence with their own words. They simply can’t help themselves. I’m actually blessed that extroverts are willing to fill the space when words don’t come as easily to me.

I’ve often criticized my sister, an extrovert, who begs me to join her for movie night or just to hang out. As touched as I am that she somehow enjoys my company, I time to time deny the offer. Sometimes, I need to be alone. However, she usually doesn’t emphasize with me. By my guess, extroverts can stand to do things alone—but if they can help it, they choose to be accompanied by somebody else.

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How to Handle Introverts + Extroverts

After I posted a poll involving this post, I received some valuable information on Twitter. Some of it contradicting what I’d always thought about extroverts and introverts. As I explained before, the key difference between introverts + extroverts is which environment we find stimulating.

Not to mention, a majority of people contradict the typical introversion + extroversion traits. For example, one immensely passionate follower on Twitter described her husband was a social butterfly around friends, family, as well as strangers—and most people considered him an extrovert—but he valued his introspective alone time just as much as social interaction, if not more.

That being said, here are a handful of tips to handling introverts + extroverts.

1. Prioritize family and friends. Especially their needs. If you’re an introvert, understand that joining them at a social event after a day of proper solitude, of course won’t kill you. As for an extrovert, understand that if your friends prefer to stay in tonight and binge Netflix, don’t call them out for being antisocial, or lame. I’m usually on the receiving end, and that’s never any fun. Considering other’s needs before your own is crucial, as well as underrated.

2. Nothing is black and white. If an introvert happens to turn down an invitation tonight, don’t assume they won’t be willing to meet up ever again. If an extrovert spends the entire night partying, don’t be shocked if they want to sleep in the following morning. Extroverts and introverts are not opposites—they’re just territories adjacent to one another. And more often than not, their tendencies collide.

3. Compromise events. Typically, introverts are comfortable by intricately planning ahead of time. Meanwhile extroverts tend to play the day by ear—they flow with whatever comes their way. In some cases, introverts have plans ready, but the extrovert juts in, wanting to hang out—separately. Extroverts: never assume introverts are as casual as you. That being said, introverts: a little spontaneity—when you have no other priorities, of course—is nice every once in a while. Keeps life interesting.

4. Don’t expect someone to change at the drop of a hat. As an introvert, I’ve been told by several people indirectly that the way I am the way I like being is wrong. On the other hand, I’ve asked my sister why she needs me there with her to watch a movie I’m not even interested in. Dragging an introvert outside + forcing them into uncomfortable situations won’t instantly make them a social butterfly. Yet refusing the invitation of an extrovert—forcing them to abandon plans—isn’t going to make them instantly sympathize your  perspective on the importance of solitude and self-preservation. Even though people may not be completely introspective or extrospective don’t even try to deny it you can’t expect someone to change for your comfort.

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Ambiverts

Did you think this post was over? 🙂 Wrong. How could I not consider the mediator of these two conflicting traits? Ambiverts are the middle ground where the people who cannot seem to conform into either the introvert or extrovert category. A majority of people can be considered ambiverts, and I can clearly see why. Hell, I have several friends who I’d classify as ambiverts. Below is a list I’ve compiled (brought you by Buzzfeed) of signs you might just fall into this special category.

Signs you might be an ambivert:

  • You’re quite fond of socializing, but introducing yourself without a mutual friend by your side can be rather intimidating
  • In a group discussion, you’re typically quiet + observant—that is, until you’re given a topic you’re passionate about, and suddenly you’re rambling
  • It’s difficult asserting yourself in a large group, but when you have proper time to think, you nail your opportunity
  • When reading about introverts and extroverts, you find yourself relating to both sides and it frustrates you to no end
  • You divide your time between socializing and solitude, compared to a one-sided preference
  • You can split your personality depending on whoever you’re with—acting as both a quiet soul or the life of the party isn’t a struggle for you
  • Being the center of attention is uncomfortable for you, but blending in to your surroundings is just as agitating

Are you an introvert? An extrovert? An ambivert? Or does it not particularly matter to you? Comment below, I’d love to hear your responses!

xoxo, jill

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17 thoughts on “Introverts vs Extroverts

  1. 1) i love this post! at school, i’m definitely considered an introvert, and have even gotten the question, “why are you so quiet?” but around a group of people, i’m an ambivert.
    2) HOW WAS I NOT FOLLOWING YOUR BLOG BEFORE THIS
    3) love the gatsby gifs!!!

    Like

  2. This is an interesting topic!
    I think I’m ambivert well, basically because of everything you said 😂😂
    Though I’m not really that aware of that, and I would say that it doesn’t matters but sometimes it does.
    Great to read this!

    Like

    1. Aw thank you! I did a bit of research that in the end has given me amble info on both categories 🙂 it’s okay if you’re not sure where you fall into, but most people are familiar with ambivert

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m a shy introvert with social anxiety so I’m really at one side of the spectrum haha
    One of my sisters is the exact opposite and spending too much time around her can be SO draining. Some people don’t understand that it’s not only that I want to be alone, but that I NEED to be alone so I can ‘recharge’. That’s because I get really tired from spending time with people. Still, that doesn’t mean I hate people or that I can’t hang out, but if I’m forced to be around company for too long, I get grumpy and even more withdrawn than usual.
    I can imagine extroverts feel the same but when they are alone. They need interaction or they feel blue, bored, anxious even. I like how you put it, how it all comes down to the environment both sides crave or need at times. And I like that you added the ambiverts too, because as with everything in life, it’s part of a spectrum. We can never look at things as black and white.
    Great post. I love this topic 😀

    Like

  4. i can say that i’m an ambivert. it’s a litte embarrassing for me to make friends and socialize, sometimes i’m shy and sometimes i’m not (depending on the day). i can relate to both introvert and extroverts things you said…
    amazing post, Jill! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I was introvert from the beginning… But I realized that being introvert doesn’t get you friends, and many often you find yourself all by yourself…. It’s not that I hate lone time but at times when I need someone to stand by me there’s no one…
    So, I decided to turn into an extrovert…. I still trying to open up…. Talk to people, he loud and outgoing and trust me I am enjoying it…..
    What you wrote was really true and amazing….. I can relate

    Like

    1. That’s so great you’re learning to open up! But you don’t need to be an extrovert to have great friends 🙂 I’m an introvert (and partly extrovert) but I love socializing when it’s people I can trust! Good luck 🙂

      Like

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