The classification of introversion versus extraversion IS about how you manage your energy or how you recharge, in part. But the other piece of it, the bigger piece of it, that we don't really talk about is introversion and extraversion is about where the real world resides for you. It's where you find meaning and purpose. For most people who are extraverted, their main source of purpose and meaning is external to themselves: other people. For most people who are introverted, it's more internal: closer to yourself.
While there is an increase in the use of personality tests as people are becoming more self aware. Quite possibly, one of. the biggest areas of confusion around introversion versus extraversion as a personality type is that they are often used interchangeably with being shy. Now, I'm not going to act like I have all of the answers about what makes someone an introvert or an extrovert. I don't.
However, my best guess is that most people believe the purpose of this classification is to relate to how much you enjoy socializing and spending time with people.
Then some people believe that being an introvert or extrovert is primarily about how you manage your energy.
The energy management part is true. The spending time with people is partially true. And the people person part is just flat out lies.
The classification of introversion versus extraversion IS about how you manage your energy or how you recharge, in part. But the other piece of it, the bigger piece of it, that we don't really talk about is introversion and extraversion is about where the real world resides for you.
What Is The Real World
Let's dive into that for a minute.
What I mean by that is, for an introvert, the real world is inside. The real world is deep down inside your own mind.
What you feel inside or what's happening inside of your mind, is where the real world lives.
And that's the world that really matters for you if you are an introvert.
For an extravert, the real world is outside — it's out here in front of you…the external reality.
The external world or the world outside of themselves, is the real world.
And in this inner or outer reality, is where a lot of our behaviors, come from.
Now, your personality is also shaped by other things as well. Things like your upbringing, different messages that we receive from society, our own individual deep-rooted fears, and more. And introversion and extraversion are usually viewed on a single continuum. Meaning that to be high in one you have to be low in the other.
it is worth noting, whether you are an introvert or extrovert you have tendencies for both.
How Other Factors Impact Introversion and Extraversion
Let's use the example of a person that's extremely chatty and social. By default, we would probably assign an extraverted label to that person. Because we have been taught to believe that introverts stay to themselves.
So how could this chatty Cathy be an introvert?
It could be that “Cathy” is an introvert. But through life experiences, she has learned or programmed herself to talk more.
This enables her to control the outer environment, based on what's happening internally, inside of her.
Introverts are always putting themselves in a position of constantly taking information and reconciling it with what they know to be true, internally. This is where the whole management of your energy comes from in terms of thinking about introversion.
As an introvert in social situations, taking in and processing information, it is typically followed up with a need to have that alone time. This is because the process of internal reconciliation is exhausting.
On the other hand, extroverts, they feel most comfortable or most at home when they are interacting with their environment, and this includes people.
If you met a girl who was extremely shy and reserved, you would most likely, by default categorize her as an introverted. Let's call her Shy Suzie!
In “Suzies” childhood she might have been subjected to ridicule and opposition when she tried to assert herself and use her voice. As a result she retreated in inward and conditioned herself to shy away from using her voice.
But she finds time spent alone lonely and boring. And even if she minimally engages with people in social settings, she is energized by being in the presence of others.
It does not mean that by default that as an extrovert you always wanna be in crowds of people, or are the life of the party. But you have a sense of charge happening when you are engaged with things (and people) outside of yourself.
Are You an Introvert Or Extrovert
Are you an introvert?
Or are you an extrovert?
Introversion is about self-preservation, whereas extraversion is about self-expression.
Introversion is about the inner world, and extraversion is all about the outer world.
This may actually be the best way to go about figuring out if you're truly an introvert or extravert. Rather than just how you act or maybe how you were once taught to act. There are real, profound differences between introverts and extroverts at their core. And these differences are not just in how they act or interact with others. They're in what we fundamentally need as humans to function optimally, and how our brains are hardwired.
The Real World and Where It Resides Is The Real Difference Between Introversion Versus Extraversion
Why The Myers-Briggs is So Powerful
The Myers Briggs assessment helps you to tap into your full potential of knowing and understanding yourself and becoming the highest version of yourself.
It said that introverts that wish they were extroverts live less happy lives. The reality is anyone who does not embrace all of the beautiful pieces of themselves will lead a life filled with less joy and happiness.
When you know and understand your tendencies, strengths, weaknesses, and even your preferences, then you can slowly apply those things to your life, and to your own experiences. And THAT is where true happiness lives.
This equips you to maximize those experiences so that you end up being your most full self, your happiest self, your truest self, and ultimately that's the goal.
You want to live your life, as who you are and happy. So many of us are not living that way because childhood upbringing or trauma has caused us to not be our full selves. Societal norms and expectations have told us that we have to be this way or that way.
This information about being an introvert and or an extrovert is provided so that you have an understanding of what it means to be an one or the other.
You can identify and figure out which one you are, and then you can actually use that information in a way that's most beneficial to you.
Take The Myers-Briggs Assessment For Free
Have you taken the assessment to find out what your Myers Briggs personality type is? You can take the Myers Briggs personality test here for free.
The thing is, it's not only about knowing your personality type. But also about fully understanding what the pieces of it all mean for YOU specifically.
Once you're able to pull it all together you can do amazing things. Things like set and accomplish realistic goals, improve relationships make career decisions that make sense for you, and shift a multitude of things in both your personal and professional life.
Interested in learning more about your personality?
Book a discovery call today to see how we can work together.
As a personal and professional development coach, I help women live the life they want by understanding their personalities, their strengths and their weaknesses, but then also how to use those strengths and weaknesses to their fullest potential and highest advantage. I am a Myers Briggs Personality test enthusiast, and I use the Myers Briggs Personality Test in helping my coaching clients with the services that I provide. You can find out more here.