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Differences between extraverted, introverted and shy people

Differences between extraverted, introverted and shy people

July 14, 2024

Nowadays, it seems that Successful people are the ones who have the most friends, the most persuasive and the ones who communicate more with others . What it takes is to go to as many parties better and be the king of your social circle, dominating all possible social skills.

Introverts: weird bugs?

In recent times, the extraversion It has become the ideal to which we should all aspire. If a person is more comfortable reading than at a party with loud music and hundreds of people around him, he is branded as shy and asocial, and we say he has a problem.

Recommended reading: "How to know if you tend towards introversion or towards extraversion"

And although it is true that some of the people who avoid social situations do so because of a problem (such as social phobia, anxiety or exaggerated shyness), others do so because they really prefer solitude. Almost a century ago, Carl Gustav Jung defined two types of personality in his work Psychological types, classifying people into introverts and extroverts .

Differences between introverts and extraverts

In this article, we will examine the differences between introversion, extraversion and other related concepts. We start with the first one, social anxiety.

Social anxiety

Social anxiety disorder, also known as social phobia, is a pathology classified within the anxiety disorders. It is characterized becauseThe person who suffers from it suffers a persistent fear of one or more social situations, due to the fear of being ridiculed .

The most common symptoms are pressure in the chest, sweating, tremor in the legs, blushing, negative thoughts, fear of negative evaluation ... These symptoms can appear in different social situations that the person has to face, such as speak in public or be at a party.

Like all disorders, the problem of social anxiety is presented because the person would like to be able to behave normally in situations that scare him, but he can not do it. To alleviate this, he usually resorts to one or several coping strategies, which can vary from not going to parties and social gatherings, to getting drunk or taking drugs to increase his sense of control.

Many of the people who suffer from this disorder could be classified as extraverted, and it is precisely the clash between their desire to relate and their fear of social situations that causes them more suffering.


If we imagine a straight line with social anxiety in one extreme and introversion in the other, shyness would be more or less in the middle. Contrary to what many people think, shyness is not considered a psychological disorder, although it shares many traits with social phobia .

The main difference that presents with social anxiety is that, while a person with this disorder will tend to avoid situations that cause discomfort, either by not going or using any other coping strategy such as drinking alcohol, a shy person may continue to be exposed to those situations. Of course, having to face their own feelings of discomfort in the process.

Another difference is the generalization of symptoms. While a shy person may enjoy certain types of social situations, depending on the conditions of the same, someone who suffers from social phobia will feel discomfort in almost all situations in which he feels exposed to criticism from others.

As in the previous point, we can find many extraverted people who are both shy, so we can not identify introversion with this behavior pattern either.

But then, what is introversion? Traits of an introvert

According to Jung's theory, one of the most important classifications we can make among people is whether they are extraverted or introverted.

The difference is in how they get the stimulation they need to feel good . While an extravert is "charged" with energy in social environments, an introvert generates its own internal stimulation, so high-energy environments saturate it and end up exhausting.

So, an outgoing person will tend to look for situations in which there are many people, loud music, or extreme sensations . It will not be strange to find someone of these characteristics being the center of attention of a group, or surrounded by many friends, doing extreme sports or acting on a stage.

On the contrary, and although an introvert can also enjoy these things, they will usually seek other types of activities to relax: read a good book, have deep conversations with their close friends, spend the day in nature ...

Recapitulating: Am I introverted or shy?

Of course, there are no introverts or pure extroverts (and as Jung himself said, "if there were we would have to look for them in the psychiatric one"). We can all show characteristics of one kind or another depending on the moment and the situation where we are. But it is important to know that it is possible to enjoy solitude without it implying that we have a disorder.

In summary, if you think you are an introvert, look to see if you fit these five characteristics:

  • Although you enjoy social relationships, you usually prefer to speak in small groups than with many people at the same time.
  • When you go to a party, instead of increasing, your energy diminishes throughout the night, sometimes to the point of wanting to leave much earlier than the others.
  • You do not mind being alone from time to time, you know how to enjoy your time with yourself.
  • You have a few close friends, and your relationship with them is very deep.
  • When you are interested, you are able to engage in superficial conversations with people you do not know, although usually you do not devote much effort to this task.

On the other hand, if you see yourself reflected in the following characteristics, you are likely to suffer from shyness or social phobia:

  • You would like to meet more people, but only by imagining yourself approaching a stranger does you feel unwell.
  • You are not able to enjoy the holidays because when you are in one you are worried about what others may think of you.
  • Although you do not like to be alone, many times you do not leave home for fear of exposing yourself to situations in which you will feel bad.
  • Sometimes you feel that you have contradictory desires, because you would like to talk to a person or expose yourself to an audience, but at the same time just thinking about it makes you panic.

I hope that this article has helped you to understand the differences between introversion and the different disorders that can affect our behavior with others, and better understand your own feelings about social situations .

Difference Between Introverts and Extroverts - Introvert vs Extrovert Comparison (animated) (July 2024).

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