Mind: Introverted vs. Extraverted

It is safe to say that Extraversion and Introversion are probably the oldest notions in the history of personality theories. It has long been observed that some people are expressive, outgoing and comfortable in interacting with their surroundings – while others are reserved, quiet and more comfortable alone. It is as if the former sincerely enjoy engaging with the external world and recharge by communicating with other people, and the latter prefer to rely on themselves and their own inner world instead of seeking stimulation from the outside. We focus on these differences in our first scale, which we call Mind – it determines how we see and approach the outside world, including people, objects and activities within it.

While Introversion and Extraversion are often used in lieu of social aptitude, this scale involves more than just being outgoing and social – although social skills form part of it. In a broader way, the Mind scale determines the degree of interaction with the outer world; how socially one behaves is just a part of that. In a sense, this scale is a contrast of the quantity and intensity of an experience and its quality or depth.

People who are considered Extraverts (E) in our model are not as sensitive to outer stimuli and need to seek them out in order to gain a kind of functional equilibrium and to perform well. Introverts (I), on the other hand, are more sensitive and need to escape the same stimuli in order to be more functional. Unlike Extraverts, Introverts can quickly exhaust their mental energy reserves, and they will only tolerate such situations so long before they yearn for solitude and quiet.

Let’s consider a couple of practical examples. Our research shows that Introverts are significantly more likely to report being sensitive to noise and bright colors, and they also strongly prefer simplicity and minimalism in their environment (especially if their Introversion is coupled with the Thinking trait). Likewise, they do not seek or require much external stimulation – while communicating with other people is the most obvious example of such stimulation, this concept also extends to things like hobbies, political attitudes and even eating or drinking habits. For instance, Introverts are more likely to dislike coffee and energy drinks.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, Extraverts are more interested in engaging the environment – people and objects around them – and they need feedback as well. They are more energetic and willing to take the lead in many situations, especially social ones, and they enjoy pushing limits and challenging both themselves and those around them. People with Extraverted personality types are also more likely to feel that they can handle any challenges life throws their way. Obviously, whether that turns out to be true or not depends on many other circumstances, but generally speaking, Extraverts tend to be much more proactive in experiencing (and relying on) the world around them.

Finally, it is important to point out that the Mind scale does not determine how introspective or reflective we are – even though it may be tempting to confuse the two. There are introspective Extraverts and non-introspective Introverts. Ultimately, this scale is about how much stimulation we require and can absorb from our environment, not about what happens in our minds afterwards.

6 days ago
Wow i am sensitive to noise and bright colors. I also dont like coffee or energy drink!
1 month ago
I do not have trouble understanding anything that anyone feels. It is indeed the best part about being Intuitive. Easy to know how someone feels just by the look on their face, or their tone, they may be smiling but what really counts is the words they use. and how they say something. like mood and tone of a character, but an actual person feeling the way they do. just like a book, the reader picks up on things the character feels when the character is not expressing it mentally, but in their tone and their choice of words. reading someones emotions is not always something someone can do. My meme says that you are either born intuitive or you just do not have it. is that true?
1 month ago
Do other extroverts have a problem where they say something but it get interpreted into a different way altogether... or is that just me?
3 months ago
This has been very helpful.... since I’ve taken the test and discovered I’m an INJF ~T has helped explain a lot it’s been very insightful and it’s nice to finally have the right words and explanations as to why certain things happen and why I have felt like I didn’t belong in this generation or sometimes this planet... thanking you
3 months ago
Wow. I've known that I'm extremely introverted. 93% according to this test. What I did not know was about the noise and bright colours, which is absolutely accurate. I get a sharp pain in the middle of my forehead if I look at bright colours and if I'm tired and hear a loud noise, I get a wave of pain rush over my body. Even the sun annoys me and I much more prefer an overcast day. But I DO very much love my coffee. ☕️
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