We’re always talking about how it’s hard for extroverts to understand introverts. But let’s face it, some things that extroverts do can be pretty perplexing. Let’s explore a few of them, shall we?
Now this is a big one. Introverts don’t get how some extroverts can have so much to say about the most mundane topics. I first noticed this as an introverted teen. The popular girls were always talking stream of consciousness style with no filter. Their algorithm for interesting conversation was a complete mystery to me.
Topics ranged from boys, to beauty, to the special care instructions for their new naval rings (Brittany Spears had just come on the scene in all her naval baring glory). To me, many of the details they divulged seemed like overkill.
For instance, one girl might share the step-by-step process of her latest hair removal experience. “It’s, like, this thick cream, and I dunno, you just, like, spread it on really thick and leave it for a while. It really stinks, but it lasts longer than shaving. You know what I mean?”
I knew what she meant, but I couldn’t understand how a detailed description of hair removal was appropriate lunchtime conversation. Still don’t.
2. Travelling in packs
Why do some extroverts always have to make it a group thing? More is not always merrier. I know this for a fact. Part of me gets the desire to have your peeps around you. It’s nice to feel the animal warmth of your family and dear friends.
But a lot of extroverts take it to the extreme. They go to the bathroom in pairs, movies in groups of four or five, pub crawls in slobbering packs of ten or more. Toddlers can poop, and crawl and sit in front of a screen by themselves. Why can’t extroverts?
3. The open door policy
“Come on in, anytime, my door is always open!” Said no introvert ever. The open door policy was created by and for people-pleasing extroverts who can’t stand being alone.
I can understand keeping the door open sometimes. But all the time? I’d rather not spend my days knowing that at any moment someone could barrel into my office like a bulldozer, and demolish my train of thought. No, the door is open between 4:30 pm – 5:00 pm on weekdays. If you need me outside those hours, send me an email, and I will promptly ignore it.
4. Packing their social calendar
I don’t understand the extrovert’s incessant need to be doing things all the time. They try to explain it to me with catchy acronyms, like YOLO (“you only live once”) and FOMO (“fear of missing out”), but I don’t buy it. I already feel like I’ve lived many lives, like a cat. Sometimes I just want to stay in, lie around, lick my wounds for a while.
To get a little philosophical, we are never really doing nothing. We are always thinking, or dreaming, or resting our mind from thinking and dreaming (a.k.a meditating). I’m much more afraid of missing out on those things than missing a few stupid parties.
5. Theme parks
This one I just don’t get. I’ve gone to my fair share of amusement parks, and expos, mostly because that’s the ‘fun’ thing to do in your youth. All my extroverted friends were practically peeing their pants with excitement at these places (one of them did, in fact, pee her pants, after a turn on the Hypercoaster).
But to the average introvert, theme parks are an expensive form of punishment. You line up and wait to buy tokens or paper tickets, or whatever, and then you line up and wait to have the shit scared out of you. Again and again and again. All the while, you are jostled by crowds of people, and overwhelmed by the scent of cotton candy mingled with sweat. Only an extrovert would be insane enough to enjoy such torture.
6. The more is more mindset
Bigger is better! Go big or go home! Supersize me, baby! These are household phrases that appeal to extroverted households. The quest for more – more things, more entertainment, more stimulation – is very much an extrovert’s pursuit.
Even though we don’t fully understand it, we introverts can easily get sucked in by the extrovert’s more is more mentality. If there weren’t so much pressure to acquire and consume, most introverts would be happy to live with less. As long as we have our books, our imagination, and a wide slice of solitude, we’re content.
I’m sure there are many more things about extroverts that introverts don’t understand. For now, I think I’ve ranted enough. Now, it’s your turn.
Over to you
I’d love to hear what you’ll never understand about extroverts.
Also, please do share if you have any experiences or insights related to what I’ve written.
You can write your comments below. ?
Michaela, you are always right on. I always enjoy your posts!
Thanks, Isabelle! So happy to hear that! 🙂
1. Oversharing isn’t an extrovert trait, it has more to do with low intelligence.
2. Traveling in packs might be something they do, but it’s a big minority, rather they would try to meet new people instead of staying with the old.
3. Open door policy is less about extroversion than it’s about empathising and good manners. It actually came from the idea that you should treat others like you want to be treated, if their door is open, they know others would open their doors to them.
4. Social Calender; that’s type A behaviour vs Type B behaviour. Not extrovert vs introvert. There are many type B extroverts who would also rather stay in, and type A introverts who need to go out, even if it’s just with their own mates and not meeting new people.
5. Themeparks, it has to do with dopamine and adrenaline release, not social interaction. Some people find enough adrenaline from watching 007, orhers need to go 200mph on a coaster.
6. More is more, is essentially materialism summed up. Look at a rich and succesful introvert’s house and cars, and look at a poor extrovert. It all depends on the level of materialism and has nothing to do with how socialable you are.
As much as I enjoyed having a laugh when reading how stupid some people can be that they need justification outside themselves, I feel this article was not supposed to be called what it is, as it has nothing to do with introverts OR extroverts.
@Tiny Ford Your Awesome!!!
Talking. And more talking. And even more talking. The nonstop noise coming out of the mouth. And if you’re not there, they dog you with the phone. An hour of noise to get two minutes of information.It’s exhausting.
With an IQ of 173 I’m not stupid by any means. I hope you do well in life but, calling others stupid you probably won’t reach your full if limited potential.
Agree 100% with everything you said. This article was an uninformed attack on “extroverts”, treating people who you consider so as morons.
All comments above obviously coming from extroverts. Tell tell.. slam dunk.
I like how clearly offended you are by th is post that you had to go and try to counter every point.
Open door policy is, in fact, about extroversion. It’s not a manner of manners. Literally every modern office on the planet uses an instant messaging system in addition to email.
Do not bother people in person when you can more effectively comunicate, by written word, instantly, without imposing your annoying ass presence on their physical space.
I love this article. But one thing I can’t understand about extroverts is why they aren’t interested in learning about us, they just usually want to talk about them? Why?
It is because extroverts are more focused on themselves.They focus on personal objetives and how to obtain them.They’re tend to be a little egocentric and selfish sometimes.In contrast with us introverts,who are more worried about the feelings of others.It’s simply their nature 😉
Interestingly enough my boyfriend is an extreme introvert and is Super egotistical. So much so that he pouts and whines until he gets his way. It’s his way or the high way and guess what? I’m the extrovert that has submitted almost every time.
Utter nonsense like what you’ve said there is exactly why there’s this massive gap between introverted/neurodiverse and extraverted/neurotypical groups.
You have a sociopath, there. An introvert wouldn’t be able to play the social game, they’re asocial (not antisocial, a distinction that extraverts rarely understand). What I’ve learned throughout life is that introverts are lousy liars and manipulators, they always score low on the dark triad (look it up, it’s an actual professional measure of sociopathic and psychopathic traits).
When you think enough (and the problem is sadly that extraverts rarely do think enough) to understand what’s going on here, you’ll see why I’m so vexed by your kind. Introverts are neurotic and asocial, not manipulative or particularly charismatic. It’s our nature.
You have a pseudo-intellectual sociopath who’s pretending to be a certain way to mooch off of you. I can see that as plain as day. It’s that kind of clingy, always-has-to-be-with-their-extravert sociopathic parasite that can be found in the most toxic relationships.
The problem with extraverts is that they can be parasite enablers. Extraverts have traits shared with sociopaths. Sociopaths are extreme extraverts, after all. Except the process is a little different. An extravert manipulates people to get them to like the extravert more, even if it’s at the expense of someone else (look at your own post, sound familiar). It’s… mostly harmless.
A sociopath uses this ability for manipulation and charisma to benefit from it. They don’t want people to like them, they just want an easy life filled with free stuff. And as an extravert, you’re being a parasite enabler. You’re allowing this sociopath to do this to you.
And you’re putting down introverts as part of a delusion in order to prop yourself up, to make yourself look more likeable.
“I’m taking care of this poor, needy, hopeless introvert who can’t hold down a job because I’m an angel. I am perfection.” certainly looks better than “I’m a parasite enabler and I can’t stop this parasite from taking advantage of me, I don’t know why. Please help?” doesn’t it?
No, you’re not an angel looking after an introvert. You’re an extraverted parasite enabler bending over backwards to please a sociopathic parasite. That’s super obvious to any introvert or neurodiverse individual who’ll have read your comment. And frankly, we’re really very tired of you blaming us for your issues.
It’s wearisome, it really is. It means we have to belabour these points to you every time you find yourselves in situations like this. And whilst we’re not good at manipulation, our introspection and natural self-awareness means we can see right through yours. And we don’t like it one bit.
It’s not charming, it’s not endearing, it’s sleazy and nauseating.
And this is why introverts/neurodiverse people don’t like extraverted/neurotypical people. This has always been at the core of it. You’ll enable sociopathic parasites and blame us for all your problems, because we make for good scapegoats since we’re never going to manipulate you back. You can spin us into any scenario. You can always use an introvert to be the fall guy!
And it gets old. It gets really old.
I’ll say it again: You’re not an angel looking after a poor, defenseless introvert. And you know that as much as I do. You’re being taken advantage of by a sociopathic parasite because parasite enabling is in your nature. Don’t spin it. Admit it. Maybe then you can move forward and cut the sociopathic parasite out of your life.
Being introverted doesn’t make you superior or deeper. And being extroverted does not mean someone is shallow or selfish. I did not like this post. I’m not a shallow extrovert, and I deeply care about my friends. Life is hard for extroverts and introverts alike, for different reasons. Try to put your resentment aside. The author objects to the conversational topics of certain “popular girls” and manages to paint extroverts as shallow, needy over-sharers. My friends and I discussed philosophy, art, and current events in high school. We thrived on the exchange, but the conversational topics were not at all what is being depicted here. There’s this weird resentment of extroverts that some introverts seem to express, as though we’re responsible for their problems. Taking responsibility for one’s emotions and limitations is essential. Extroverts don’t resent introverts for managing solitude so well, so don’t resent extroverts for their social ease. You are no more responsible when we have difficulty being alone than we are when you have difficulty asserting yourself in conversation. The difference is, because we’re there, you think it’s ok to blame us. That’s wrong. Rise to your own challenges instead of blaming others for what holds you back. Introverts can be every bit as insensitive as the worst insensitive extrovert. Most extroverts are well-meaning. They are taking in information when you don’t think they are. I can seem like I’m not listening but recite back to you everything you said. But sure, it’s harder for me to focus and listen sometimes, because I have thousands of thoughts on myriad topics that I’m excited to share myself. Imagine being despised for existing as you naturally are. It’s the highest form of bigotry. You don’t get a free pass by claiming you’re so introspective and wise, none of you do. Learning to be alone has been a painful process for me. Learning to insert yourself into a conversation may be a painful process for you, but here’s the kicker: it’s nobody’s fault.
I recommend this, for starters, to deepen the conversation:
Thank you so much for your comment
As a non-shallow extrovert, I agree with everything you said.
Amazing comment, you put into words everything I was feeling as I read it too. I am sick of being ‘extrovert shamed’.
I’m overjoyed to see you sharing your point of view, but what I personally dont understand about any of this is how you call “extroverts” egotistical/focused on themselves when you insist on grouping everyone into 2 types and painting yourself as the victim in a way? I can’t believe someone who dares to claim to care for others, be so smug and assuming! I understand that you most likely haven’t had the best rapport with talkitive people, but my goodness. I’m baffled to see people put such a gargantuan set of persons into one “type” or a negative trait.
I don’t know what all the fuss is about. People are people and we should just let them be, not label them and put them in boxes and in a biased way. That is just unfair and we should learn to accept all people for who they are and not attack others because we don’t understand or identify with them. I believe that we should not place a war against each other and accept the fact that the world needs both extroverts and introverts alike.
That is a very very unfair judgement. You can define someone as selfish based on ONE personality trait. I am an NF, intuitive Feeler, and my life concerned about others feelings. I love personality exploration, but I see so many introverts shaming extroverts that is saddens me. I am married to an introvert, and I am deeply grateful he has never been as condescending as these comments, and this article.
You mean about being selfish and not understanding each other? It’s your fault anyway for being too selfish and want everyone understand you, but you don’t understand them and accuse them of being selfish. It’s all about understanding each other
Extroverts do worry about other people’s feelings. I think you have that backwards
It is because extroverts focus on themselves,in personal objectives and how to obtain them,rather then focus on other people’s feelings,like us introverts.They’re egocentric.It’s just they’re nature(i’m not saying this in a bad way).
I feel like I could never have a conversation about race and queer issues, with any of you guys commenting here.
Unless you would be giving a priori arguments supported by unbiased data and untouched by the radical left wing agenda.. Then I don’t think you would be able to speak to anybody about those “issues” on ANY platform.
If however you took a neutral viewpoint supported by facts, I’ve found that people very easily converse with you.
Take for example someone like Jordan Peterson, everyone wants to talk to him about those two things, why would they want to? It’s obvious; because he only uses facts. Same goes for Ben Shapiro, or someone like that Milo guy who always gets invited to speak about race and gender.
So my advice, use facts, not feelings, data, not experiences, solid reasearch, not a few friends’ ideas. And EVERYONE WITH A BRAIN will come storming in to talk to you about what you want to talk about
There is just one problem with your comment. Not all extroverts focus on themselves, there are no two extroverts or introverts alike. I am an extrovert, but I care A LOT about other’s feelings. I have a big heart and am very empathetic. It is not just our nature to only care about ourselves. At times, yes, I will mainly look out for myself, but doesn’t everyone? We have to take care of ourselves before we can take care of others.
As an extrovert, I can honestly reply that it’s because, if you don’t share these things freely, we feel that you don’t want us to know them. I’ve had a friend for years whom I always just assumed wanted her privacy until one day, after showing extra interest in her love life, she reacted with genuine appreciation that I asked. I would love to hear more about the people in my life, but I hate prying and don’t want to make people uncomfortable by asking questions that they may deem too personal. Also, sometimes I share as an attempt to make the other person comfortable enough to share (without my prodding).
Well, that’s one limited way of looking at it. Another way could be to realise that introverted/neurodiverse people have different communicative structures versus extraverted/neurotypical people.
Introverts have understood this for the longest time. We actually bother to research and understand, we like understanding things which are unfamiliar to us. The problem extraverts have is this fetish for the familiar, which leads to prejudices and the Us vs. Them mindset. It creates cognitive biases for familiarity.
Why bother researching the unfamiliar when you could be spending time at this rad party with the familiar? Compared to us, you live in a small world. Scientific research (as documented in many peer-reviewed papers) has pointed out that neurodiverse/introverted people have very active brains at rest.
And extraverted/neurotypical people, by comparison, have very latent brains at rest. So whilst you’re chilling out with your brain in ‘off mode’ (we can’t do that), introverts are constantly dreaming up new possibilities and scenarios. It’s why we speak with such depth.
So extraverts/autistics prefer their brains to be in ‘off mode,’ and they prefer the company of the cloyingly familiar. Introverts/neurotypicals prefer the unfamiliar (learning), and they enjoy their brains to be in a heightened state of activity. That’s the difference. Science has said this, not I. Brain scans don’t lie.
And that’s the thing. You cannot learn about us because of your absolute attachment to familiarity. We can learn about you because we’re able to absorb knowledge about nearly anything, the downside for us though is that we’ll become bored if things get too familiar.
This is why extraverts roam in packs (familiarity) and introverts are constantly seeking out new writers with fresh ideas (unfamiliarity). This is how our brains work. There’s plenty of resources out there for you to have learned, but you’re just not interested. It’s not unfair to say you can’t be interested, even. We’re unfamiliar enough to be boring to you.
And you’re too familiar to us to be interesting to us.
That is not true. I am extrovert, but here I am learning about introverts.
Because extroverts tend to usually read body language extremly well, so if you’re giving off a closed signal even if you are interested they will read it as you dont care while also thinking they are boring you.
Because, no offense, but we find your behavior too boring.
Why is it if you want your door closed they think you are hiding something OR there”s a virtual flashing light beckoning them to enter. Drives me to distraction!
This whole article is actually a little judgemental isn’t it..? I’m also introverted but was actually a little offended by the tone of this… There are some good points – but the way they are written are very much in the tone of “tsk the extroverted are like soooo stupid! Omg how can they BE like this!!”
I think there should be room for people to be different than us – some people have other habits and need to go out and be social or whatever to recreate. Who are we to judge that alone-time is better? Differences (and acceptance of these) should be a good thing not something we mock in forums with people who are like ourselves.
Thank you for this comment. I think I’m naturally more of an extrovert but I don’t identify with most of this.
There are so many different levels of introversion and extroversion.
While I may identify as more of an extrovert, I can also be pretty shy, I don’t talk about everything that crosses my mind and I enjoy alone time.
I don’t easily take offence but the tone of this article is a little judgemental and rude.
Yes, it is judgemental but then so are extroverts. Their view of life is the “right” one and we introverts are just considered to be sickos. When I read the latest school shooter described as an introvert, as if that explained everything that motivated him, I get just a little angry at the extroverted world we have to live in.
I consider myself more of an extrovert, and I am married to an introvert, I am not judgemental, I understand that he don’t like crowds, or going places all the time, and that’s fine, but it doesn’t stop me from going to theme parks and places with my friends, he tells me to have a good time, he prefers nature hikes and quiet places, and I do too sometimes, I think you sounded pretty judgemental when you said extroverts are judgemental, and we think our view of life is the “right” way, I say however you choose to live your life is what’s right for you.
Introverts are just hard for extroverts to understand because they’re not very open and hard to tell what they’re thinking, and for an extrovert they get confused. My best friend is incredibly introverted and I’m extremely extroverted and it took me a while to understand that just because he doesn’t talk much, or want to spend loads and loads of time with me and hates touching, it doesn’t mean he’s annoyed or dislikes me.
Lynne, you can’t be serious. Yes, some extroverts are judgmental–but so are some introverts. It has nothing to do with introversion or extroversion.
Yeah, he was an introvert. He was also male. Probably young. Probably white. Those are just factors. It doesn’t mean that introverts are sickos….
I’m an extrovert, and I love introverts. I would generally prefer to spend time with introverts than extroverts, with only a few exceptions–my husband, my brother, and like 3 of my close friends are extroverts that I love spending time with. Most of my other friends are introverts.
Many extroverts struggle to understand introverts, but that doesn’t mean they look down on them. They just don’t get it. Likewise, many introverts don’t really “get” extroverts.
Michelle, I applaud you for your wisdom. I’m an extrovert and your notion was well said. Although, I wasn’t offended and by from it, sometimes it’s just lack of knowledge or self-evaluation. The saying, what she said in this article and using her friends as an example says more about her own character than herself. As you said, “who are we to judge?” Knowledge is one powerful tool for self-development for it brings out the wisdom in one’s self. Thank you for your well educated mindset; an emotional intelligence gifted skill you have.
Thank you so much. Signed, a very good hearted extrovert that felt offended by these generalities and the judgemental tone.
Oh no, it’s for real.
I never invite extroverts to my home any longer. Even friends. Why? Because they can’t be idle. They can’t just sit and talk, or sit and muse if, say, I leave to go and get them a cup of tea.
As soon as I look away, they will happily rearrange my entire home, decide what’s to be discarded, which plants need to be repotted, go through my phone absent-mindedly, consume my food, etc. without ever once soliciting my input.
I can’t leave them in a room alone for ten minutes without expecting to return and feel violated. I don’t have an untidy home. Everything that I keep, I keep for a reason. Everything that I place, I place for a reason.
If I call them on it, it launches a twenty minute conversation and lots of airy smiling and explanations that are literally regurgitations of groupthink and popular home decor culture. Extroverts are like the tide. When they come, destruction results, and they are relentless without meaning to be.
The only way to stop them, it seems, is to actually get very firm and loud and say, “Please STOP editing my life or my living space, thanks very much!”
…at which point they do something uncomfortable like get huffy and offended, or break down and start to cry and apologize profusely, etc.
And the one thing through it all that they absolutely cannot due is countenance an entire three seconds without a word being spoken. Their mouth MUST open and close at a constant rate, or they die.
I began to realize that despite thinking of some extroverts as my friends, I literally hated spending time with them. Extroverts have no boundaries, very little empathy, and very little original to think, say, or do, despite being unable to stop continuously thinking, saying, and doing SOMETHING at all times.
Yes, I am quite ready to be done with extroverts. Ugh. Double-UGH.
NO! I am a VERY proud extrovert and I am VERY offended by this. I HAVE EMPATHY!!!!! SO MUCH EMPATHY YOU WOULDN’T EVEN KNOW!!!! I CAN SIT FOR THREE HOURS OR PROBABLY EVEN LONGER AND JUST THINK!!! SURE, AT TIMES I HAVE TO BE DOING SOMETHING BUT I CAN JUST SIT THERE AND NOT DO ANYTHING!!!!! Why, why would you say something like this? Why would you create these stereotypes? My friend says I can get anything out of the fridge or make myself a glass of water or milk anytime I want but I just can’t. I feel so uncomfortable and out of place. I would never do anything like that! I’m truly sorry that you had to go through that. Your friends clearly were just kinda nosy and with no boundaries, but just because they may have been extroverts, doesn’t mean that all extroverts are like that. I hope that you have a nice day.
kind of weirded out by how this article imposes such a shallow view of extroverts. the defenition of extroversion, at its most basic core, is drawing your energy from external sources, instead of internal ones. it is NOT about loud ego-centered and attention seeking people. what you are talking about is obnoxious behavior, and it’s unfair to pinpoint and assume all extroverts act that way, when in fact some of their most admirable traits are enthusiasm, creativity, humor, and determination. how would you feel if all introverts were generalized for being cold, unsympathetic, and unfriendly? just because other people aren’t like you doesn’t mean you can dismiss them and not make an effort to understand them at all.
Theme parks are punishment. So are concerts. And huge parties.
Concerts — crowds, lines, loud people, more lines, crowds, fearing somebody will be rude or inconsiderate to the rest of us. Did I mention lines? And crowds? I’m cringing just thinking about it. I would much rather to listen to music at home.
I must disagree on this one. I’m an introvert but I absolutely loveeee theme parks (I hate roller coasters though, another characteristic of introverts.) Actually, theme parks (specially Disney) are the only places where I suddenly transform myself into an extrovert, wanting to talk to all the people and not stop doings things all day. I don’t know why is that, it should be a scientific study of this. In all the other aspects of my life, I’m an introvert and agree with all your points.
You’re pretty 🙂
Well, I am 32 and still single, out of fear I won’t get enough alone time if I’m married. lol
Well said on all accounts. It’s too bad that extroverts rule the world and because of that we’re at a severe disadvantage towards obtaining as high of a salary or position. Even if we’re far better at doing our jobs than those extroverts who spend all their time endlessly chatting!
I’m a huge introvert and I love theme parks, indoor concerts, outdoor concerts, and bars that feature live musicians. I think loud music and people having a good time is tons of fun. But I dislike clubbing and I hate huge parties. So, each introvert is different which I’m sure you already know.
It never ceases to amaze me how many extroverts think jabbering on the phone (even about nothing) is a form of recreation.
Oh yes, I’m sure a lot of innies can relate to that, Marty.
ROFL! Yes! Especially the first three.
1. My Mom & younger Sister have absolutely no filter whatsoever. It annoys to me to no end.
2. Do you really need help to take a leak? I’ve never understood this.
3. If my door really was always open, I think I’d have a nervous breakdown. I love my family & friends, but house guests force me to be “on” much longer then normal. I inevitably embarrass myself by having a meltdown.
Haha well said, Gloria! 🙂
A few more things
Their craving for constant attention: they always want to talk louder and faster than everyone else in the room.
It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about chimpmunks exploring the outer space, they’ll always find a way to make it all about them.
They can spend hours talking about every single aspect of their lives without taking a second to ask how you’re doing.
It seems like they are trying too hard to be happy, hyper, well succeeded etc
Btw do they know it’s possible to do something nice without instagramming it?
Yes! And yes again, all the way to the bottom of your list!
I agree about so-called “friends” always jabbering on about their family stuff, personal stuff you would really rather not hear about, their jobs, their grandkids, their new car with all the “bells and whistles”, their next exotic trip, blah, blah. But do they EVER ask about you or what is new and then really listen to what you are saying? Rarely.
Also, I have never had an open-door policy nor do I ever want to have one. Unannounced, unwelcome visitors are my biggest pet peeve – to the point of madness. I absolutely despise anyone who just “drops by”, no matter who it is. It just seems so rude and selfish. I usually hide or just don’t answer the door. Also the phone phobia is a big one. I hate the phone and I hate having a friend call just to ask how my day/week is going – usually at dinner time of course. I just let it go to answering machine.
This is my two-cents input on the subject.
Finally someone who understands my pain. I also hate how I’ll listen to my friends for minutes, or hours ranting/talking. Then eventually they would talk about a subject I like. I’ll weigh the pros and cons to speaking, and then I’ll think for seconds or minutes on what I’ll say, but when I finally talk they ignore me, like I’m invisible! It hurts so much when that happens…
Gosh, I can relate to this comment!
That happens to me all the time to Alana. It sucks
You know, I’m really starting to get offended by some of these extrovert stereotypes. I am an extrovert and you know what, I will drop ANYTHING to talk about what my friend wants to. Even if I don’t like what they are talking about, I will try my absolute hardest to listen to them. I am talkative, as most extroverts are, I don’t stop talking sometimes, and yeah, sure, I may talk about myself but there are soo many other things I talk about that aren’t related to me. This is starting to make me cry, because I do talk about others and I wish that people wouldn’t say this. Cause I DO care. I care soo much that when I accidentally offend someone, I apologize OVER and OVER! And when I get the chance, stick up for others and not just myself. So please, watch what you say, cause it affects people.
I think you may be confusing extroverted with self-centered. I know lots of extroverts who love to spend time with other people, engage in almost constant and rapid conversation but don’t hog the show and are genuinely interested in other people. Not all extroverts are attention-seeking.
You are an ambivert.
I’m an introvert, but I’ve to disagree about the 3rd point: ” “Come on in, anytime, my door is always open!” Said no introvert ever. ”
I’ve said it thousands of time to someone I care, to someone I’d love to have their company. It’s not because I’m a people-pleasing person, but a happy, kind, caring person.
Please don’t portray introverts as they’re some kind of cold-blooded insensitive monster.
I wouldn’t say that we’re being portrayed as such. I believe that most innies do feel this way, I certainly do. I personally need to prepare myself company.
I do agree. I have said it many, many times. But if I was 100% honest, I didn’t truly want to say it. I was putting myself out for the others.
I totally agree. I hate when people just drop by my house unannounced. Take it how you want. It just makes me feel totally uncomfortable and I feel like I’m caught off guard or something, Even if its the ones I love. But my family already knows how I feel about that and we work with it.
I totally feel this way.
Incredible how everything that you outlined here is sooooo on the mark! Concerts, however, are usually not an issue because I can go with just my bride and not have to interact with the other thousand people there.
Ah yes, having a trusted sidekick can make extroverted environments less overwhelming. 🙂
Most agree with point 1 and 2. To point 1: It seems that they can talk non-stop about stuffs at a very fast pace that I can’t process what they are saying. When they paused, a 2 second delay in response earns a “You should loosen up.” =/
To point 2: I regretted ever mentioning that I tend to watch movies alone. Some of my friends said, “You are so lonely and sad.” Then, they made it a point to “cure” me of being so “sad and lonely”. Even when I told them I am fine going out alone. I know they have good intentions, but sometimes it just too much.
Oh, that is the worst. I hate when people try to “cure” me. Luckily, doesn’t happen too much anymore.
Oh yes. I love, love, love going out by myself- exploring a town, museum, movies, lunch, coffee… I would much rather go on my own and absorb things at my own pace than have to be with others (even loved ones).
I remember a co-worker frantically ringing *everyone* she knew because she desperately wanted to see a particular movie and no-one would go with her.
I found it so amusing. Why not go by yourself you idiot! Sorry, but that is idiotic.
“Theme parks are an expensive form of punishment.” I think this quote should be tweeted and posted on every social media platform geared at Introverts! I absolutely love this and agree whole-heartedly!
Haha glad you can relate, Connie!
Throughout my 20s and 30s a lot of friends would want to go to the club. This, too, is an expensive form of punishment … maybe not as expensive as a theme park, but when you’re having to pay for misery, any amount is too expensive. I never understood what was so wonderful about this type of outing. You can’t hear because the music is so loud, you can’t read because the lights are too dim, there’s no place to be alone (such as a waiting room) and all around you there are swarms of people, many of whom are drunk.
That one threw me. I’m an introvert: I prefer alone time, need to recharge after social events, and as a rule hate crowds. But I still love amusement parks. And so does my introverted sister. Because for a few hours we can ignore reality and be like kids again. As long as I have trusted close friends with me, it takes my mind off the crowds. I also love roller coasters. I love feeling like I’m flying. But my sister and I are both INFPs; we love escapism and being a kid again. I think this article was written by an ISTJ or INTJ.
Another spin on #3 is that extroverts don’t understand that introverts don’t think about an open door policy. Often times someone will say, “you’re always welcome over, you don’t need an invitation!” That seems like such a foreign concept that I’ll never just stop over, I still wait for that invitation because that’s what I would expect others to want as well.
So true, Josh! My new neighbour said this to me repeatedly, but I just felt too weird stopping by unannounced.
I agree too. I always call someone first before just going over to their house for some reason. It is just good manners. I don’t want to invade their privacy if they are cooking/eating/napping/watching a tv show/showering or just having their own alone time. I don’t like my privacy and boundaries invaded so I assume no one else wants this either. And I don’t think innies are cold-blooded, insensitive monsters just because they want their alone time and privacy. I am a very kind, happy, caring introvert too but I just need my own space in my own home.
I don’t understand why extroverts feel the need to make EVERYONE “participate”. It’s like they just cannot stand it if someone isn’t talking, joining in, etc. If they are happy doing whatever they are doing, why can they not believe I am happy NOT doing whatever they are doing? Why does it seem to bother them so much when someone is “quiet”? It’s like they just can’t stand it if someone is quiet and will do everything including beg, cajole, tease, demand, and stare down to get an introvert to “speak up”. We aren’t dogs who speak on command for goodness’ sake!
It’s actually true that some extroverts (especially those from very extroverted cultures) really can’t stand others not having ‘fun’. They feel guilty about it. I realized this when I lived in Mexico for several months. I could tell they were just super invested in me having a good time.
So many times in my life I have heard, “It’s okay to have fun, you know!” or “Why do you deprive yourself? Just have fun!”
I try to explain / convince people that not everybody defines “fun” the same way. I’ll respond, “I like being alone.” They say, “Let yourself have some fun!” I say, regarding their extroverted-type outing, “That’s simply not my idea of fun.” They say, “Why are you against having fun?”
Spot on, Vicki. Years ago, I felt insulted when an older co-worker took a not-so-subtle dig at my introverted lifestyle — one in which I stayed home and read books. “When I was your age,” she trilled, “I was frequently out most evenings “having a heck of a good time.”
Yep. There are cultures that are what I would personally define as hyper-socialized. I have in-law family relations that are from the Philippines. As a culture – they are outgoing, friendly, and love to do things with extended groups of family or friends. There are times though, that I find the need to get together on this weekend, or that weekend, and attend this party (and this is a personal assessment) excessive. I’ll attend functions, but won’t car pool so I can leave when I’ve had my fill.
I read some months ago on Susan Cain’s website that Brazil is hyper-social as well. A young woman from that country suggested how difficult it was for an introvert like herself to feel comfortable in a society that elevated Carnival to a religious obligation!
The strongest hypothesis that I’ve found to explain this phenomenon is that extroversion gains its energy through compersion.
The feeling of joy that one gets by witnessing another person experiencing joy.
This is so true! @ work I notice the constant repetition of the same story as they go around the work place seeking different reactions. It’s mind numbing!
Yes, I’ve experienced this with my talkative mother. Same story to every person! Painful!
The door is always open is a no-go here ?. I need at least a week’s notice if company is coming over (more than that for an overnight guest). ???
Me, too! Unless it is someone very special. 😉
“The door is always open,” said no introvert ever. This one really hit home. I definitely need my home to be my quiet place/space. I love getting your emails. Thanks!
Oh, so good to hear, Davis. You’re welcome!
Love it!!! I especially loved the “I don’t want to do a thing today. I did a thing yesterday” ? That is so me!!!
My coworker doesn’t seem to get the idea of going to the theater alone. Anytime I mention it, she always asks why I don’t invite someone to go along(maybe she’s hinting she wants to go? I really don’t understand her), or asks/teases if I have a “hot date”. It almost makes me feel…guilty(?) or…lonely about going alone.
I know what you mean. I’ve experienced similar reactions when I tell people I’ve gone to a new movie (or continent) by myself.
Physical proximity, extroverts tend to hang on you, touch you, bump into you, walk in your path till you almost trip, sit too close, take the stall/urinal next to you so they can talk. Haven’t they heard of bathroom etiquette? Let’s hold hands under the stall and gaze into each others eyes over the urinal wall, or better yet let’s play sword fight or even better have urine distance contests. Yay!! Fun, fun…
Lol, too funny! I haven’t experienced this one since i’m a woman, but sounds unpleasant!
One thing I never grok is the extroverted drive to force help on me. Not sure how to say this right, but if I look puzzled or mutter to myself, an extrovert will insist on ‘comforting’ / ‘solving the problem’ for me / breaking my train of thought. Which invariably puts a cross look on my face, which then gets interpreted as ‘Oh, he needs even MORE help!’
Interesting, Buck, I feel the same way about men. Always wanting to fix my problems!
I would say that all men are guilty of this. Usually when one man engages another in conversation it’s usually to elicit help with a problem to mutually come up with a solution. It’s hard wired into his brain. So when a woman engages a man with a problem through conversation he goes into fix it mode automatically. What he doesn’t know inherently is that women talk their problems out and don’t need a solution unless they ask for one, chances are they have already solved it. They just need to decompress. Basically it’s like the saying ” A problem shared is a problem halved.” Women and the relationship benefits by how well a woman is heard, when she feels heard and seen, she then has fewer and fewer problems, things seem to work themselves out. A man’s desire to fix her or her problems, is coming from a loving place and his desire to make her happy, there is nothing sexier to a man than a woman’s smile and her smile because of him.
Love it. Haha.
I hate how extroverts feel it is their personal mission to ‘cure’ you of your quiet, reserved nature. ‘Come out of your shell’, ‘why don’t you talk more!!’, etc, etc. Or find the need to state the obvious ‘gee you are so quiet’. Well duh.
Its very rude. Imagine if we told the extroverts ‘you are so loud! You need to talk less!!”.
It’s just when an extrovert is quiet and reserved we’re uncomfortable or upset, so when we meet and introvert it’s hard to understand if they’re upset or comfortable and so we tend to try and make you uncomfortable, however unfortunately it comes off in an annoying or even more uncomfortable way. We really are just trying to be nice.
Heather, you wrote: “Imagine if we told the extroverts ‘you are so loud! You need to talk less!!”.”
After a year of sitting right next to an extrovert co-worker who would insist on talking ALL DAY , to me, others nearby and anyone who walked past her desk, I asked to be moved to a different desk because it was affecting my work. I would put on headphones and she would wave at me or throw paperclips to get my attention.She would gossip, talk about her social life, tv programs, complain about work and management, etc…. I put a bulletin board up as a wall and she would stand to look over it and wave and throw paperclips. I advised her numerous times that I could not get my work done or completed correctly if I keep getting interrupted. She would be “good” the rest of the day but next day would be the same issue. I spoke with the supervisor after exhausting all ideas and was told “Well, some people can get their work done and talk at the same time” (the boss is an extrovert also)…I had to advise her that I could not. So after that it was I who had a problem and am now labeled as “anti-social” or not liking the people I work with. Geez…..meanwhile—after putting in new systems and workflows that can now give management accurate information regarding our production and quality of output, they are finding out, apparently, that Ms. Extrovert is NOT able to talk all day and still get her work done properly! I could have told them that years ago!
That is so frustrating, Cindy! Good to hear that they eventually learned the truth!
…… People litterally say that all the time. Difference is extroverts dont hold on to it like a giant vlow to the heart.
You kind of do which makes you the rude one
3#The open door policy – Hahaha, Michaela that’s so me. I’d rather open my door for a QUIET homeless cat, instead for an extrovert neighbor who can’t shut up! 🙂 – A good longtime friend (extrovert) already is dreaming of a “shared apartement with old people” although she’s about 10 years younger than me. She already invited me to join this fictive coming “shared apartement” one day. – Me and a “shared apartement”? Forget it! – I prefer to share an apartement with QUIET cats (or a single SPECIAL person who is able to shut up for hours or even days! :))
I kind of like open door – for one or two people at the time! Not a free for all, party here anytime thing, but I do love tea on the sofa with a sweet friend.
And I actually like better when they come to see me unexpectedly, because that allows me to NOT go on a house cleaning rampage because “WE’RE HAVING GUESTS”, or feeling like I have to prepare a complicated meal. It’s a decent level of lived in house, and you can always find some snack.
And oversharing? Boy do I ever… When I find someone to chat comfortably with, things blurt out… 🙁
I absolutely agree with all of these except, strangely enough, the theme parks! Although the noise and people can get a bit much, I actually love going on rides themselves. And the strange thing is that not only am I an introvert but I’m also really scared of heights, to the point where I’ve never even been in my own loft!
I, too, love theme parks. I’m very much an introvert but I’m also a part-time adrenaline junkie. I prefer going alone though, or with one very good friend, and avoiding the most crowded places. I also absolutely love going to rock concerts and festivals, which isn’t usually concerned a very introvert friendly activity either, but I’m fine as long as I go alone. I don’t mind crowds, provided I’m not required to communicate with them. I can stand in the crowd, zone out, and get lost in my own thoughts – or have fun observing the extroverts in their natural habitat. 😀 Of course I feel drained afterwards but it’s usually worth it.
I, like you, agree with everything except the theme parks. I really enjoy roller coasters! I also enjoy people watching. Of course, I need a recovery day afterwards.
I’ll add my voice to the minority chorus here: I like theme parks, too. And concerts and festivals and the like don’t bother me as long as I’m not expected to actually interact with all those people. Introversion/extroversion isn’t really related to thrill-seeking or physical risk-taking behavior. In fact, since this site peripherally deals with Myers-Briggs types, I’ll go ahead and mention that types with a strong presence of the cognitive function Se (ISTP or ISFP, for example) can be very into these more physically-oriented experiences. To a lesser extent, so can types with strong Ne (like me) because we enjoy new experiences.
Funny little post! How do you always get it so talently right? 🙂 Where I come from (Belgium), we have a variant to “The more, the merrier”. Loosely translated it says: “How more souls, how more pleasure.” For years now I use my very own adaptation of it: “How less souls, how less trouble.”
Great posts always.I love you innie friend
As a life-long celibate confirmed bachelor, and, after having done over 25 years of tranquillity training meditation, I do not understand nor do I have any conception of when people say that they need a partner to complete himself/herself. As far as I am concerned, I am 100% complete and I am 100% secure in myself. Is this an extrovert conjecture and/or is this something else Michaela ??? I would luv to know your opinion on this
As an extrovert, I was a bit disappointed by this article. I don’t feel that “bigger is better” all the time, I rarely go to theme parks, and I’m careful to avoid oversharing where possible (although of course that’s a very subjective thing). Not only that, I rarely travel in packs when I go out – I often go places on my own. However, I know that I’m energised by interaction with people and that I’m an extrovert. I’m sure there are plenty of extroverts who actually do the above things, but I still felt they were unfair stereotypes that painted extroverts in a rather negative light.
Hi Lauren, thanks for sharing your perspective on this. All of my articles are subjective and most certainly do not speak for ALL introverts or ALL extroverts.
Number 6 reminds me of a conversation I recently had with a guy one of my friends tried setting me up with. I told him I am an artist and, although I am the stereotypical “starving artist” barely getting by, I am content with my life. As long as I am able to be alone and create, I am just fine without the big home, new car, or fancy vacations. His response- “So you’ve just given up?”. I feel bad for people like him who always think they need more, more, more.
I just want to add that you have helped me a great deal in my quest to understand myself better. Thank you so much!
As an introverted guy, I can relate to most of them, especially the first one. But it some kind makes me feel lonely I don’t know why 🙁
I’m very introverted, and also very uncomfortable in a social setting with a lot of strangers (e.g. a party where you just “hang” and are supposed to “socialize”). I suppose I might have social anxiety to some extent. I would never go to such an event without a friend, so I must say that the 2nd part about traveling in packs is something of a life saver for me. I’d rather follow the few people I know than be left alone in a situation like that.
Not feeling this article, as an ENFP. Some pretty big eye-rolls while reading, I must admit. Big, goofy stereotypes that aren’t necessarily true.
As an ENFP, I’m pretty approachable, open about sharing opinions etc, and I do love amusement parks. However, I am certainly not into the idea of people just dropping by unannounced (HELLO! Some of us Extroverts are pretty messy and need to straighten up before someone sees how we live, and also, SHOCKER!, we also need and value privacy and good manners. I’ve actually told people NOT to drop by unannounced — although with my friends it’s pretty much implied you don’t do that to me.)
Being an extrovert doesn’t mean you have no filter — I think that depends on so many factors, including maturity. I’ve occasionally had to put my foot in my mouth, but I’m always conscious that I shouldn’t dominate conversations or allow any verbal diarrhea to hit the floor.
And lastly, yes, theme parks and rollercoasters rock, but I will actually research the least busy days and plan my visit on days when there will be less people. It may be a surprise, but just because someone is extroverted, it doesn’t make being in cattle-like levels of crowds appealing. In fact I have claustrophobia, and just can’t deal with hoards of people.
I’m also big on one-on-one time with my friends, mate, and kids. Occasionally, group activities are fun, but they are also exhausting– even to extroverts! :-O
And, I’ve never ever been a super size me, bigger is better person, EVER. I’m all about less is more when it comes to possessions etc. I should post a picture of my television for you (reminds me of the Office episode with Michael Scott’s tiny little plasma TV.) Anyway…Slightly infuriating little article, and I don’t think it was necessarily written in good humor.
Maybe meet some more extroverted people, or try harder to look closer at the extroverts in your life and you might see that it’s not as black and white as you seem to think.
Hi Aurora, thank you for sharing your perspective as an ENFP. As I said to another extrovert reader, my articles are subjective and don’t speak for all introverts or all extroverts. I am well aware that there are plenty of extroverts who don’t match up to each of my points – many of them are dear friends to me! I shared things that most introverts have encountered many times with many many extroverts. The reason why I highlight these things is to make introverts to feel better knowing that they are not “weirdos” or “outcasts” for not fitting into the extrovert ideal.
Having music or the telly constantly on as background noise, every waking moment. Can extroverts just not enjoy a bit of silence?
Oh, yes! I have lived with extroverts like this (electronic music at 9 am!), and it drove me crazy!
My mother is an introvert and she can have the TV on 24 hours a day. She’d actually watch it for about 12 of those hours. It drove me nuts when I visited her for the holidays.
One thing I miss is the fact that most extroverts seem to change when they’re in a groop. Many of my friends are extrovert, and I can have deep, serious conversations with them. Until someone else, even another mutual friend, joins us. Their attitude changes from an adult person to an overactive five-year old. That’s the point when I want to leave the scene.
I also like to say I love amusement parks. Every now and then. No, not the lines. I hate them. But the adrenaline of the rides, yes. I go home exhausted, but satisfied, because I truly enjoyed it. But like I said, every now and then, 2 or 3 times a year. Not every week like a friend of mine.
BTW, love to read your posts, Michaela
Nothing to add Michaela… 🙂
Marvelous, beautiful article and spot on as always… 🙂
Thanks, Marko! 🙂
At a previous job, we all had (small, 8×10) offices with real doors. A co-worker got dinged on his annual review for keeping his door closed when he was working.
He asked, “If I can’t close it, why do I have it?”
Hard to believe that a boss would ding an employee for keeping his door closed. But a substitute teacher one told me that she was taken to task for not socializing enough with her colleagues. Her excuse? She had to juggle two jobs. And she was also a mom.
Michaela, it looks like you have posted a very interesting and thought-provoking article on 6 things extroverts do that . . . . . . So many good posts with same themes running through most of them. Please keep posting more of these lists that we can all respond to and share our innie responses to. A fun afternoon of reading through the posts. Love it!!
Thanks, Stella. I’ll do my best to keep it up. 🙂
I employed a lady one time (flower shop) who was an excellent worker and had a heart of gold. She was an extrovert through and through. I am an introvert to an extreme. She would come in the office and chatter on and on about this, that, and the other and one day I could not take it anymore. I told her I wasn’t listening and to respect that when I am obviously working to please not talk to me. I sincerely like and respect this woman and she knew that. She totally got it and made a huge attempt to stop. However; she is an extrovert so occasionally I would have to stop, look up, and remind her. Gotta love those extroverted creatures, but, I absolutely LOVE being an introvert!
I enjoyed this, especially the part about theme parks – I’d rather have my teeth drilled than go to Disneyland.
I’m not sure it’s fair to tar all extroverts with the “no filter” brush. Seems like what we’re really talking about is narcissism, which is worth identifying and talking about on its own, since it seems to be an epidemic.
My policy as a teacher is “you’re welcome to poke your head in my office if my door is open.” That way I don’t have to schedule available time in advance – and people know that if the door’s closed, I’m not available.
OMG! Until now, I never realized why I dread the hubby’s summer office party at a theme park! I feel so validated.
quite good article. Your responses make me believe that I am not odd but I stand out. So educative.Thank you
The touching. “Come here and let me give you a hug!” I don’t just hug anyone. I have had to run from people I don’t know that well trying to hug me for little to no reason. Great posts Michaela!
I’ll never understand their need to to whatever everyone else is doing or what’s ‘popular’. Having to have what everyone else has etc. If i want a Ferrari it’s bc its an awesome piece of engineering, something that i am impressed by, like my statue of Aristotle, plasma ball, or Tesla coil..not bc the neighbor had one so i had to get one as well. There again, these types things are what’s wrong with our society in general these days.
I’ll also never understand the super superficiality they seem to have about..well, pretty much anything..they’re more worried about the superbowl than the fact that they spend little time actually contemplating things that actually matter.
Extroverts, especially males, try and engage restaurant servers in unnecessary mundane conversation.
hello micheala am so happy i got in contact with this blog of yours,some days ago i was asked by a youth pastor if im fine and i told him i was fine but he instisted that i wasnt free and i needed help.on that same day i came aand searched until i came across your blog,on reading the posts i felt there was someone who understood me.i dont like it when people ask me whether am ok,is it wrong or a sin to be an introvert.with love from uganda
Love this! I can relate to every one of these, esp. the oversharing!! Lol!! =)
I do agree with a lot of opinions and by the way, Great post! I still must say I believe most negative opinions of extroverts is only because they are more expressive. Introverts Hv the same issues. They just prefer to do stuff like “make it all abt themselves” among pple they can confide in…and on social media.
The introvert-extrovert dilemma is something we all will jus Hv to figure out by trying.
I personally don’t enjoy meeting new pple but the few times I tried, never felt really swell abt it, but I got to learn that people are actually more interesting and noble than my initial predictions
At social gatherings with extroverts I’ve noticed that “conversations” about absolutely nothing can go on for hours. The larger the group, the more superficial the conversation. These situations leave me feeling drained and insecure, as I tend to freeze up and go quiet, then I feel bad about not having contributed much. Afterwards an extrovert will say “That was a great night.” Really?”, I’d think. All night nothing meaningful was said. I also don’t get people who can’t be alone even for one evening and need constant entertainment.
Just because you don’t find the conversation topic of much importance doesn’t mean it’s fake, Extroverts bond from talking to other people. Extroverts get energy from other people and become depressed if not around other people (I went into depression because I wasn’t talking to enough people), while introverts get their energy from being alone.
I agree with them all, apart from theme parks. I love theme parks, I love the fun of a rollercoaster ride and I am generally 90% introverted.
I agree and disagree with number 5. I love theme parks but when they are not packed so I can go from ride to ride with little to no lines and the mindless chatter of people.
Thank you, Michaela! I’ve read so many posts about how inscrutable introverts are to extroverts, so it was so refreshing to read a post about the reverse! I agree with everything!
The theme park one is interesting because to me it applies to more than just actual amusement parks–like an afternoon at the mall, or going to the park with a big group of people, or anything that involves large chunks of time at very open spaces with lots of people. I avoid all of those! But I also agree with some of the comments above, about how theme parks aren’t so bad if they’re not crowded. One of my favorite childhood memories is when my dad and I went for one last ride on the giant flying swings at an amusement park one night after the big crowds had left, and it was so fun and peaceful looking out over all the lights and empty walking paths below us. To this day I love amusement parks at night.
I kind of agree with you on amusement parks. I’m so shy but love going to amusement parks. I loathe crowds but make myself go and endure it anyway. Afterwards I am exhausted.
Okay. I get it. I have learned in my years that there are people that do not want to hear the story of my life. But here’s the mindset behind the “let me tell you everything about Nairing my legs” idea: Every detail is a huge thing in my mind. Pretty much everythying that happens to me can be a huge story. I guess because I can tend to be an overreacter and most things that happen are either the best or worst things that could possibly happen. So naturally I want to get this huge experience out of my head and I’m sure people are dying to hear it. It takes some years and more experience to get the idea that my extroversion is virtually sucking the life out of some introverts, so I have to be careful to keep it short and sweet and not ask too many questions. I totally don’t get not wanting to share/overshare, but I respect that there are people different than I.
And as for doing things in groups, if something is fun, it’s funner with more people! In fact there’s some things I won’t do without a group. Like karaoke. At least a group of 10. And what if you get to the bathroom and need lipstick? or need to conference about your date with your BFF? Okay. I can feel the life being sucked out of people reading this. But one last thing: not all of us are self-centered. We just want to share with the rest of the world what’s in our heads.
You have a very entertaining piece here, Michaela. I’m an extrovert (ENTP) who enjoys learning about introverts. I have many friends who fall under that category and I love every single one of them. However, I don’t understand why you express negative feelings towards extroverts. I was about to break down and cry after #3 (just kidding). I get it… some extroverts can be extremely obnoxious, demanding, and yadda-yadda, which can bum many introverts out. But there’s no need to write messages that are generalized up-the-wazoo that tell people that there’s two types of people in the world: 1. the loud doo-doo heads that stand close to you (or in a circle) and 2. the leave-me-alone house-person.
-I love hyphens!-
The point I’m trying to make is… treat everyone like people and let them do what they want.
Thank you Razzle-Frazzle for being a voice of reason and tolerance amidst this sea of negativity! I am an…uh…extroverted introvert, so I like to think that I have an understanding of both side of the equation.
Let’s be kinder to each other and stop all of these ridiculous generalizations. Obviously there are personalities and people that irritate us. Choose to remove yourself or not be involved. How does it affect you if a group of women go to the washroom at the same time? How is it about you, if someone loves to be social and is comfortable with people dropping by for a visit? If you don’t like that, then work on defining your own boundaries for those people if they are imposing on your privacy. Take responsibility. I assure you that if you were to kindly and firmly say how you feel about it, most people would completely respect your feelings.
Ignorant people come from all walks of life. I’ve know the kindest, most loving extroverts and the most obnoxious. Conversely, I’ve known the most surly, socially uncomfortable introverts and the sweetest, most thoughtful ones. Your judgmental approach is most likely intended to be funny….I get that, but why don’t you use your power for good? Why don’t you try to bridge the gap by providing useful, sensitive information instead of inflaming the situation with a damaging “US vs. THEM attitude”?
I understand that you’ve obviously had some unpleasant experiences and I’m sorry, but the world would be a better place if mean-spirited articles like this came to a stop. They serve only one purpose..to divide us as human beings.
Tina, I thank you so much for choosing your words very wisely and conveying your message in the utmost respectful, yet constructive feedback. As I was reading her article, I decide to read others comments before I speak. But, you became my voice and I couldn’t agree more with your notion bc you said it very well. It probably would have taken me careful thoughts to say the things I agreed with you on everything. I’m both intro & extrovert, which I call it Emotional Intelligence. That my friend is what you displayed. Firm, honest, yet unoffensive. Well said!
I just don’t understand why SOME extroverts (not all) look down on introverts and pressure them to be outgoing and more social. Why do my extroverted coworkers think I can be an extrovert by simply introducing myself to people I dont know at work? I personally embrace my introverted personality, I dont like having an outgoing personality.
Hi I am an introvert who has finally realised that most of my friends are introverts. The thing is that they never told me! That’s why your extrovert people ask you to join in etc cos they don’t know. I used to drop in to visit as well and ring them too….. Oh shock horror how rude! One day a friend told me she didn’t answer her phone cos she hated it then I realise she hated me visiting as well and suffice to say I haven’t seen her for over a year. Sorry but I never realised my introverted friends actually hated me!
i’m an introvert but i like theme parks, well not to socialize but to enjoy extreme rides & to get that “as if it’ll be my last day on earth kinda feeling.” most of the extroverts i know like to be around people because according to them others stimulate them in ways that they themselves can’t do on their own. it’s like they need others to inspire them, make them realize things etc.. i know one friend who can’t be all by herself because she said it’s terrifying to be alone with her thoughts. well that’s the opposite for us introverts right? it’s sometimes terrible to be with people than to be in solitude.
What do I dislike about extroverts , well how happy gossiping and calling others makes them that I so do not understand , how the latest thing there doing is the thing everyone is doing I will not follow trends I am still into the same music books films and clothes I always was , I dislike how everyone is into this reality tv crap there’s not one thing real about it it’s a load of fake ego maniac rubbish and people think it’s real if I flick through the channels and see big brother I want to puke only way I would watch that garbage would be like some science project to see how self deluded people can be and trust me when I say with heart I do feel sorry for them , I dislike how people are so offended by happiness I know a woman in the pub I go to .she walks around dancing smiling singing and all you hear is how nuts everyone thinks she is , I think she is awesome more like her please , the moaners are the nutters to me ha , I could go on all day but I won’t ha take care God bless .
You are so right on, Michaela! I’m an introvert who writes complex software for consumer electronics devices, and am dismayed by certain extroverts on our staff.
One such extrovert is a young woman who always finds it necessary to snap her fingers as she (frequently) walks through the hallways. She likes to make eye contact with the office occupants as she passes their doorways, instead of looking where she’s going. Nah, no distractions there.
She seems to prefer making all phone calls via speakerphone, and recently brought in some home speakers to her office to enhance her Skype experiences. Home speakers!! And of course, her door is wide open. Yes, of course, everyone else around her absolutely wants her conversations to be imposed on them – especially when she’s making yet another marathon call to her mom. On company time, no less.
When she’s trying to get something done in her office, she likes to chew gum – and snap it loudly, in rapid-fire succession. Meanwhile, I’m trying to visualize the nuances of complex algorithms and dozens of state variables in my mind, against the annoying backdrop of “snap”, “snap”, “snap”,…
So I close my office door quite frequently. I only wish there were some way of politely revealing the distracting and disruptive nature of her habits to her, but she’d be offended, and I’m sure our employer would wonder what’s wrong with me. Yes, I must change my behavior to compensate for hers. Wonderful.
One extrovert aphorism I’ll never utter: A stranger is a friend I haven’t yet met! Uggh!
I’m an introvert, but I go out a lot. Events such as concerts, lectures etc… And I enjoy being there by myself.
When I go to concerts, there are times I’ve actually sat on the stage to get away from people in the crowd who were jumping around, singing off key or asking me to take a picture of them with their smart phone.
(On a side note, someone asked me why I don’t take “selfies.”
I responded by telling them…
“Because I have my ego under control!”)
I’ve learned over the years that there are times I might have to be rude to get what I want, which is to be alone. Because just as there are introverts who are socially awkward and shy. I feel there are extroverts who are clingy and almost “stalker” like in their approach…
(“Hey, why don’t you come join us?”
“For the SIXTH time, no, I’m happy sitting here alone, reading my book!”
(Five minutes later…)
“Are you SURE you don’t want to come join us?”
“Yeah, I’m sure!*EYE ROLL*SIGH* Jeez Louise, someone help me please!”
(Then I rub the sides of my forehead to imply that I have a headache))
And if I’m impolite to someone, they might tell me that’s why I’m all alone or that’s why I don’t have any friends.
Well… why would I care about THEIR opinion?
If I conduct myself as a decent human being, don’t cause trouble for anyone else and things of that nature, I don’t see why I should be obligated to interact with people who I can’t relate to or that I find incredibly boring.
I can’t speak for all introverts, but I would assume one trait they have is being efficient or at least try their best to be.
“Shooting the breeze”, “Making small talk” are not efficient to me.
And I’m usually on guard when someone wants to make small talk. I usually see it as one of two things…
Someone is talking to you because they have nothing better to do and they’re killing time.
They have an ulterior motive and small talk is the gateway to get to it. And chances are you won’t like their ulterior motive or else they would come out and just say it from the very beginning!
I think some people are actually jealous of introverts because where they might not have a lot of friends, they can have so much freedom.
And no one is worth my freedom!
Parades… Why do people (my husband) insist on wanting me to go to parades. So many people just standing there, (often getting cold too), it’s loud, and I can’t get away easily.
This is…very stereotypical.
I know introverts who love amusement parks, and I know extroverts who hate them.
Extroverts can enjoy downtime, too. I am an extrovert. I am also a writer, an artist, a reader, a Netflix binger, a gamer, a musician–plenty of alone time activities. And I spend a lot of time “in my head,” just thinking and daydreaming and creating things in my mind. Introverts do not have a monopoly on contemplation or creativity.
I am also an extrovert who prefers small groups. I don’t go to a lot of parties, but when I do, I tend to stick to one or two or maybe three people. I go to the movies with one or two or maybe three people–I have gone in larger groups, when I was invited to a group event, but generally I prefer smaller groups. Just last night, I went to the movies alone. So, yes, we are in fact capable of doing things on our own, thank you very much.
I don’t even know what the “more is more” thing means. Are you referring to consumerism? That has nothing to do with introversion or extroversion. I know introverts with TONS of stuff–books, video games, movies, random fandom stuff–and I know extroverts who don’t have much of that stuff at all. I know extroverts who would literally be happy with nothing, as long as they had social contact.
I used to be an introvert, but now I’m sort of both, since society expects you to be outgoing, I sort of had to change myself, but hey-I still kept a portion of my individuality.
I do agree that this article portrays extroverts in a negative light, as if extroverts have no brain and are completely inconsiderate for introverts. I’m an introvert, and have gone most of the “introvert experience” if you want to call yourself that. It’s wasn’t pleasant but it’s wonderful because it molded me into a stronger and balanced person.
Yes, extroverts can have the tendency to feel something “quiet is not the majority and therefore weird”. But what the real problem is perception of majority of the public. Especially in western society, the general opinion of people is based on negative stereotypes on introverts, that qualities of introversion is strange and therefore discouraged (especially with millennials). This includes introverts too buying into that viewpoint.
Then, there’s the flip side where some introverts bash on extroverts based on stereotypes. Now look – introverts are being unreasonably judgemental and acting on uninformed opinion, just like how supposedly all extroverts do.
There are a lot of extroverts out there who usually have at least one introvert friend that brings out the best in them, and vice versa for introverts. One has to be balanced in their perception of the two. Also, with all these information about introvertion and extrovertion, MBTI, etc we should be able to understand that no one is the same us, and this includes introverts being different from other introverts. A healthy introvert shouldn’t loathe social connection and well rounded extroverts can value regular self-reflective times. It’s unhealthy to describe extroverts as sensory freaks and introverts as loners.
Also, I noticed a pattern when I was reading the comments. The author of this article, although acknowledged that the article is subjective, has not at least in a sincere way acknowledged the opinions that differed from her own. Yes she replies to them, in a defensive tone actually. But then continues to, in effect, thumbs up and give a golden star to those comments whose express stuff compatible to her article and over generalized statements that judge extroverts as a whole (like “I feel sorry for them” and the like.) in my opinion, it doesn’t look completely fair nor professional, but anyways.
That’s my viewpoint.
I’m an extrovert and I don’t do any of those things. I do over-explain things but that’s more an attention to detail and missing social cues that say I got it! Enough already! lol
I am an introvert and I don’t think “how hair removal cream works” is smalltalk. In fact, on mention of the name, I might have even asked, “oh, how does that work”, had I been in my teens. I have a tendency for knowing details.
Similarly, I also like theme parks. I want to go with just one — or may be two — other person(s) and don’t scream on scary rides. But I do enjoy them, once in a few years.
Can somebody answer me this (because Google is not), why are extroverts commonly close talkers/space invaders? So far at my age of 40, I have not met an introvert that gets up in your face and close talks or when sharing side by side leans up on you as if you were one and the same.
I’m about as introverted as they come. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a few folks I like and love, but I pray for the next plague just so Earth will be a little less crowded. I absolutely dread being around other humans for more than an hour. And I’m far from socially phobic, even though I used to think I was. People are just so annoying that I get afraid I might break something.
And before anyone calls me sexist, know that I’m a woman too. But I’m absolutely terrified of being left alone with other women. I don’t know if more women are extraverts, or if they’re just more extreme than the men, but I would follow the boys into the bathroom just to avoid “girl time”. Both my mother and mother-in-law are extraverts, and they’ve actually managed to drive me more nuts than I already am.
Speaking of driving, they’ve almost crashed the car talking too much. I’d rather walk 10 miles in the winter than have a conversation in the car. But then on the other hand, I find some things you mentioned somewhat understandable. And you forgot the most enraging extraverted action of all: how absolutely loud they are.
As an introvert, I have a lot of hobbies and passions that I prefer over socializing. I can go on and on about those topics if no one stops me. Actually, I do that on purpose sometimes, just so I don’t have to hear other people blabber on about fashion/celebrities/their upcoming colonoscopy. But when us introverts do get going on a rant about our research or our artwork, at least we use our “inside voices” that we learned in kindergarten. Extraverts feel the need to be extra loud about everything.
Maybe it’s to attract other extraverts, like a dog barking to another dog down the block. They do always feel the need to travel in a big yapping pack. Except dogs and wolves have sensitive ears, so they still avoid being as loud as most humans. I understand the pack mentality though. To some extent; I don’t travel with friends for their company, but so they can be a “social buffer” between me and whomever might want to talk to me. Like “here, talk to my buddy, while I slip away from you quietly. If have to be around a lot of people, I want to stretch out my patience as far as I can.
You’re spot on about the oversharing and “YOLO” crap though. I may be bitter and biased, but extraverts always come across as irresponsible party-animals and attention-hungry drunks. I’m not exaggerating when I say the most intelligent folks I know are introverts. Sorry if this offends anyone, but maybe people should learn to take silence as a hint to be silent. Intead of asking for the tenth time why we’re so quiet.
Extroverts are weird. Thats it. For starters, they are judgemental by nature cause they feel theyve got to say mostly whatever comes up to their minds at the time. They re not stupid but actually they say many stupid things because of this. They have no filter (or a very light one for that matter)..That makes them annoying. Also they tend not to think in large terms about things, its like they have a mind barrier that prevents them to think further into the future or depht of a given situation. Which makes them behave or act in unethical ways with relative frequency. They do a lot of things, but they dont care much about each of those actions moral, or transcending nature and cause. At least not consistently. Theyre a headache when you get to know them. Yes, they are charismatic, friendly, energic and determined on their motivations. But they literally have zero contemplative/reflexive skills and they always behave in a short/superficial way in sorrounding things or other people’s business. In other words, theyre kind of a*holes by nature.
You don’t get it the opposite of what annoys you about us, annoys us about you so look at yourself before you blame others for something you are not. Everyone has their differences.
I’ve noticed that extroverts are always totally enthusiastic to share every personal detail of their lives with people they hardly know! This is absolutely insane and inexplicable to my introverted self, as I hardly ever open up in such a way, even to family and the closest of friends!
Their loud, annoying voice and desperation to be heard.
You guys are too quiet, stuck up with a desperation to constantly avoid others
I am 48 years old and it has not been 24 hours since I discovered this sphere of introvert/extrovert. I am extremely extro-. My wife of many decades is very intro-. And I am mad as hell for not knowing this until now. Sick and tired of hearing this and that from the introverts and letting them decide all the time. But I’ll get over it after some time and deal with the matter from a new perspective.
Being held back all the time, the brakes on all the time just because I want to do something, create something, share ideas? It’s ok if the introverts just pull out of it at work at home and with friends, but “explaining” to us that we are over energized and have too much of this and that…..jeeeezzzz….if you like being left alone why not just leave us alone then, to our ideas and things we need to do to get energy.
I liked this post, until the rage settles. Man I am angry right now!
I find this article fascinating! As a moderate extrovert, I find it sometimes true, sometimes overblown. Regarding your number one (oversharing), I think we do share a LOT more about ourselves… but that could be good or bad. With moderate introverts, I’m happy to wait to learn things about them as we grow to know each other. However, I know some extreme introverted people in my life who, years into our relationship, still don’t tell me squat. Frankly, it makes me distrustful. I tend to wonder what other secrets you’re hiding!
I have had a hard time to understand If I were an extrovert or introvert.. but the older I get I realise I am just an inward person.
What I do not get about extroverts is.. Why the need to want to go to a pub after a group meal outing…? I collected the strength of having to entertain people for 3-4 hours,no more than that. How does one get hyped after an outing wanting to ‘take it to another level’. Just how??
You should take the Myers Briggs.
My favorite is number 3. Made me laugh. My friends like to remind me how I like to ignore their text. I only laugh inside but never admitted that that is exactly what I do.
When among people, extroverts are normal whereas intros have an ‘engine’ running in their minds continously which turns off only when they are alone again.
We introverts would be visiting the same place thousands of time and still not making any acquaintance with the people.
WE DO NOT SMILE ALL THE TIME and yes we are fine. We are not sad. 🙂
No. 2 is particularly hard for me to understand. I’m always a bit hurt when I don’t see my extremely extrovert friend for a while and then when we do meet up she turns it into a group thing, so we can’t catch up in any real depth. It’s fun and natural to her though and we just need entirely different things. I probably take the friendship too seriously, I prefer a smaller number of friends on a more one to one level whereas she has literally hundreds of friends. I’d find that so exhausting!
I admit it, extroverts can be ok to be with, you can have a nice conversation about something, but in reality they don’t really have another mindset besides “happy-go-lucky.”
They don’t understand sadness, serious moments (i.e the movie “The Giver”) or me. I really want to be social, but everyone social is just… an annoying extrovert. Don’t get me wrong, some of them are really nice, but just too happy for me. I actually somewhat enjoy sadness for some reason. It’s also annoying when a group of 20 go to the bathroom or stand in the middle of the hall and do nothing.
I can’t help but disagree. I’m an ambivert but leaning more towards a extrovert and I’ve had depression and know sad serious moments, I just hate being serious in front of a lot of people. I’d definitely not describe me as happy go lucky, more like chill but I can be pretty energetic at times
You do realize that extroverts can feel emotions aside from happiness right, thats like saying all you can feel is sadness.
I don’t understand how an extrovert can, clearly, see you reading a book and decide to come over and start running their mouths. I find it extremely annoying and rude. When I make it clear that they are interrupting me they act offended.
I don’t understand how an extrovert co-worker insists on walking over to my desk (read: interrupting my work), to ask me a question or tell me something (nothing urgent), when she could have just sent an email.
I hate to say that I hate pushy, nosy, inconsiderate extroverts, but….hey wait, I DON’T hate to say it!
1. They dont know what it feels like to be in the most imporant part of a book where you’re finding out who the murderer is or the couple your shipping is kissing or people are in a battle….next time it happens just be like “imagine your watching your show and it’s the part where your favorite characters about to die and you’re so focused on it and I stand right in front of the TV.” 🙂
It sounds like you’re the rude one in these situations…..
““Come on in, anytime, my door is always open!” Said no introvert ever.” Haha. Great one. Not sure what else to say without exceeding the nomenclature parameters….It’s nice to know there are people out there that would probably get me.
This is so true.
“There’s a certain kind of manager who is known by his call of ‘My door is always open’ and it is probably a good idea to beat yourself to death with your own resume rather than work for him.”
Terry Pratchett, The Last Continent
I don’t know if anyone is reading these comments at this late date, but I wanted to make one point about the types of conversations you mentioned in Point #1.
Point #1: “Introverts don’t get how some extroverts can have so much to say about the most mundane topics. I first noticed this as an introverted teen. The popular girls were always talking stream of consciousness style with no filter. Their algorithm for interesting conversation was a complete mystery to me.”
I am an extrovert. My reply to this is that extroverts, in general, find most things about PEOPLE they know to be interesting. That’s it.
We are interested in people (especially people we know and love): I am happy to talk about politics or history or any other topic, but people fascinate us. We want to know what makes our friends happy or sad. We like to compliment people on new hairstyles or a new outfit. The joy of watching a friend’s face light up when you tell her you love her new coat or clothes or shoes…
I genuinely care about my co-worker’s daughter’s recovery from appendicitis, and want to comfort a friend whose grandmother recently died.
We care about PEOPLE and all the details, big and small, that make up the lives of those around us.
People fascinate me as well, and I love observing human behaviour. However, as an introvert, I process information about people internally. I don’t feel the need to talk constantly about them.
You’re probably talking about idiots, not “extroverts”. This post is incredibly generalized.
Are you all mistaking being introverts with being jealous people? Because it sounds like it.
Read it out loud to yourself. The post and all of you agreeing with the post all sound very bitter about people who enjoy a fast-paced lifestyle. How about less extro-bashing in your posts.
If you love being such an intro go do that, quit bashing on us extros for living a faster life. Way to give intros a bad name. Not all intros are jerks.
I googled ‘how to politely tell an extrovert to shut up’ and was not disappointed by the results. After living two years with two of them, man, I’ve had enough! One even follows me around the house to talk about mundane things nobody cares about. I wish I could live at work with the animals.
Great article. I don’t get the extroverts’ need to constantly talk, talk, talk!
I work in a call centre (where I HAVE to talk to people all day long) and when I get home, I’m exhausted and just want to stay quiet and recharge.
You forgot to mention the CONSTANT yammering. My neighbour’s kid plays outside and talks CONSTANTLY. I do not and will never understand this. Shut up!! Silence is golden, especially when the rest of us want to work and think in peace.