THE PROBLEMS FACED BY INTROVERTS AND EXTROVERTS
I shared a cab for the very first time on my way to the airport. Since the girl in the cab looked almost my age, I effortlessly initiated a conversation. After receiving a few awkward replies I guessed she wasn’t very comfortable having a conversation. Therefore the rest of the drive was just the music from the radio and us looking outside the window.
So why is there a difference in the way people behave in similar social scenarios?
The answer to that question lies in the different personality traits of people which is shaped by biological and social forces.
Contrary to popular belief of putting people in two distinct boxes of ‘Introverts’ and Extroverts, personality is not purely black and white. Dan McAdams, Ph.D., chair of the Psychology Department at Northwestern University says, “There are no pure types in psychology, extroversion/introversion is a continuous dimension, like height and weight. There are people who score at the extremes, like very heavy people, or very tall people, or people who score very high on the trait of extroversion—but most people fall in the middle of these bell-shaped curves.”
These terms were popularized by Carl Jung, a Swiss Psychiatrist, and Psychoanalyst, who characterized the traits of extroverts, where people obtain their gratification from outside of themselves. They are enthusiastic, energetic, talkative and more assertive when they are in large social settings and are more prone to getting bored by themselves. Introversion, on the other hand, is the state of being more self-satisfied with one's mental self. They are more reserved and reflective, and their energies expand through reflection and diminish with interactions.
With these different personality traits, people often end up unsatisfied with themselves as these characteristics restrict them from doing a lot of things that they might want to do.
● Problems when given a role which involves being socially interactive
● Issues when working in a team
● Inability in expressing emotions
● Underestimating of their talents and skills by others
● Inability to spend time alone
● Overexpressing of thoughts
● Always needing someone to share emotions with
● Intruding on others’ space by talking too much
● Expanding one’s comfort zone, trying to do new things by entering spheres where one feels confident enough and conquering those fields
● Trying to be vocal about thoughts and feelings, so that colleagues know what is going on
● Giving more importance to face to face communication than virtual communication
● ‘Fake it till you make it’ - learning this mantra and practicing till one is where one envisions oneself to be
● Finding the right social group where one can grow into a confident individual
● Meditating so as to maintain mental peace and cleansing of the mind
● Learning to enjoy one’s own company and being alone sometimes
Some things to remember:
Personalities are not rock-solid, they’re a continuum. We develop these personality traits through a life-long process as our experiences play a vital role in molding the kind of people we become.
Putting people in distinct personality boxes never works as everyone has a mixture of these characteristics. We can always work on what we do not like about ourselves and transform ourselves into people we aspire to become, all that we need is hard work and the willpower to be able to reach our goals and fulfill our aspirations.