Introverts may be able to fit all their friends in a phone booth, but those relationships tend to be deep and rewarding. Introverts are more cautious and deliberate than extroverts, but that means they tend to think things through more thoroughly, which means they can often make smarter decisions.


Like Saydrah, I hate generalizations, especially about people. I agree with the author that people exist on a spectrum, with some people smack in the middle deeply enjoying both solitude and company.

The problematic and deeply flawed Myers-Briggs test (explanation of my negative opinion of M-B if asked) says that

    People who prefer extraversion draw energy from action: they tend to act, then reflect, then act further. Conversely, those who prefer introversion expend energy through action: they prefer to reflect, then act, then reflect again.
This definition comes from Myers-Briggs.

I'm aware that this article does not mention Myers-Briggs, but that definition seems to describe the author who said he got so exhausted socializing that he passed time in the bathroom until he felt energized enough to venture out again into the reception.

I found this passage interesting:

    For all these groups (chess grand masters, athletes and even ordinary college students studying for exams), solitary training allows for a level of intense and personal focus that's hard to sustain in a group setting. "You gain the most on your performance when you work alone," says Ericsson. "And the introverted temperament might make some kids more willing to make that commitment."
So it would be more difficult for a highly social person to focus for an extended period on practicing their skill/art. I agree with that. It is very hard to tune out the world if we get our joy and energy from external stimulations. Couples, also might run into trouble, if one part of the pair prefers a lot of external stimulation while the other prefers one-on-one conversation and their own meditations in response to nature or art.

Another line that interested me was this one:

    There's our mostly inborn personality, the one that wants us to be introverted or extroverted; that's the biogenic identity. There are the expectations of our culture, family and religion--the sociogenic identity. And then there are our personal desires and our sense of what matters--the ideogenic identity....An introvert like Little could live in a way that satisfies his nerves, never leaving the library, but then his ideogenic self would starve.
yes, if we hide in the library being happily energized by books, we might be starving another part of ourself that wants to/needs to contribute to society in a more hands-on way. These are some of the reasons understanding ourselves might take a lifetime.

posted by NotPhil: 2345 days ago