Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Explaining Extroversion Versus Introversion in Personality Types. Mistyping Personality. How Male ENTP's and Female ENTJ's often think they are Introverts, ESFJ's as ISFJ's and how INFP's often think they are Extroverts and INFJ's are Mistaken for Extroverts ect. Accuracy is Crucial to Understanding.

I wrote HERE  "*NOTE: As I have mentioned before in posts, personality is ONE aspect of being human and your individual make up. Environment, upbringing, birth, health, trauma, life experience, mental or cognitive differences, genetics, beliefs, gender preferences, country of origin....there are so many aspects that make up YOU. However, I firmly believe finding your accurate personality helps you understand more of yourself and how you work or function out of the world. Take a free test HERE: http://www.16personalities.com - or sign up with an email and take test here http://www.personalityhacker.com/genius-personality-test/ (this site has amazing insight, podcasts and videos.) The key is to answer as you ARE and not as you would want to be like. Meyers Briggs/ Keirsey is what the 16 personalities is based on and has research behind it for a reason. It is more of a descriptor of what you value and how you work out of the world in regards to communication and relationships.* 


In this article I am focusing on Introversion and Extroversion in the types and how they can often get mixed up or that the E versus I is a misunderstood concept. Using different outside links and sources to help you figure your accurate result out, this post is meant to diffuse some misunderstandings on Extroversion and Introversion in personality types. I am citing the most common mix ups I have found in real life but there are obviously going to be mix ups in each personality type and letter. There are three other letters that can cause issues in being tested and getting a non accurate result (see last paragraphs of post.) Obviously, because I am an INFJ, the section on INFJ's will be longer  due to my personal experience.*

Both Extroverts and Introverts get overstimulated by people, but the rewards system in the brain acts differently. According to the study cited HERE, Extroverts receive a higher reward of dopamine when interacting with people. An Introvert is more likely to get this same hit from an inanimate object.

I am married to an Extrovert, albeit one who needs more downtime than most Extraverted types. But this difference makes for some interesting conflicts to navigate. The world is set up for Extroverts thus I understand him, but he needs to actively read articles to understand my Introversion. He has used the argument that the Internet is ruled by Introverts, and while I don't think that is entirely true, I do believe that he is more likely to find helpful articles on Introverts simply because they are often the ones writing the material most of the time from that perspective. Personality Hacker has a few podcasts HERE and HERE that can aid in extrovert/introvert interactions (and any other difference in lettering.)

A key to understanding being an Extrovert or Introvert is the energy hit concept, which the Personality Hacker links reference. Do you get an energy hit after dealing with people even if you have had a marvellous time? Do you need to have quiet recovery time after even if it was good? Do you feel like you can wait a long time before ever doing that again, even if it was completely positive ( there is a range obviously in any category)? Or do you get an energy high after dealing with people in general when it's positive? For instance, you may be tired or ready to go home but your energy does not need copious times to recover and you can not wait to do it again. You may feel satisfied, fuelled and almost like you do after consuming a Thanksgiving feast, and this feeling doesn't dissipate right away...if this is the case you are most likely an Extrovert.

Some mistakenly believe they are Introverts because they need some downtime after large events or they are not necessarily chatty people. But Extroversion in certain personality types can come out more as networking, business relationships or connecting based on functions and hosting. As an example, often male ENTP's and female ENTJ's can feel they are not Extroverts, even though this is often how they do Extroversion. They are types who get an energy high off of networking with people for a common goal. ENTP's and ENTJ's will often be seen hosting dinners but hiding out in the kitchen preparing, making coffees or cleaning up. They will be the ones who need ample alone time but also thrive and enjoy a good party or numerous networking discussions on whatever their job or passion is. Often it is the male ENTP whom will be questioning their Extroversion ( for some reason female ENTP's do not do this as much) and the female ENTJ's who more often than the male's get mixed up as INTJ's. My theory is that women are naturally relational and as Rationalists ENTJ women WILL feel more drained when it comes to dealing with the feeling aspect of relationships so thus feel they are introverted due to their third function. Rationalism can also be confused with Introversion just like Intuitive qualities can get mixed up with Introverted qualities, if you do not have a firm grasp on definitions. ENTJ's are usually strong leaders in some new found path, while INTJ's will be more quiet about exerting their influence over time. HERE and HERE are two articles on that I highly recommend if you are an INTJ or ENTJ - to make sure that is in fact what you are.

MBTI Online HERE states:
"YOU EXTRAVERT CERTAIN PARTS OF YOUR PERSONALITY AND INTROVERT OTHER PARTS OF YOUR PERSONALITY
Here’s where the fun begins. Extraversion and Introversion are more than just a preference. When you start to understand more about personality type, you learn these preferences actually act like verbs instead of nouns. Depending on your personality, you extravert certain parts of your personality and introvert other parts of your personality. (We go into this more in depth in our eBook – The Ultimate (and official) Guide to Extraversion and Introversion). Your favourite function, for example, will either be extraverted (expressed outwardly for other people to see) or introverted (expressed inward, basically it happens in your mind, and others can’t see it happening).
For people who have a preference for ENTJ, their favorite function is extraverted Thinking. This means that when they’re making decisions, they’re discussing it with others and often directing the group decision making. Because extraverted Thinking is the strongest part of their personality and it’s extraverted, it’s the part people are most likely to notice and is probably considered a strength for that person with ENTJ preferences. For people who have a preference for INTJ, their favorite function is introverted Intuition. This means that when they’re taking in information and learning new things by connecting the dots and seeing patterns, it’s all happening internally and they’re probably not sharing all these thoughts with the people around them. They rely on focused, complex inner maps of ideas of the present and future. Ready for the kicker? The INTJ’s second favourite function is extraverted Thinking and the person with ENTJ preferences’ second favourite function (sometimes called the auxiliary function) is introverted Intuition."

Personality Hacker has a great article on the difference between ENTp and INTP here;https://personalityhacker.com/phq-questions-intp-vs-entp/
It is also quite common for INFP's to think of themselves as an Extroverted type because they are the most Extroverted of the Introverts. They generally care and live off of their interactions with people, however, their energy DOES take a hit and they need loads of alone time. HERE is an article that explains how an INFP result could actually be an accurate ENFP (and it can go the other way too.) INFP's will often score as ENFP's or even INFJ's because of the overlap of traits that are actually crucially different in functioning but seem similar in first glance appearance. This is why it is so important to take a few tests and also bounce off answers with someone who knows you, as you are, instead of how you think you are. HERE is an article on the surprising differences of INFP and INFJ from Personality Hacker.

Dear INFP's; (Who do not know they are INFP's yet but think of themselves as something else...possibly an ENFP or INFJ or INTP or any Rationalist category for that matter...) "*It’s important to note here that INFPs are the most prone of any personality type to mistyping as something else. Because INFPs live in a world of identity possibilities, they enjoy thinking of themselves in various different lights and are able to thoroughly convince themselves – more so than any other type – that they truly are thinkers, judgers, etc. Their extroverted intuition allows them to see a situation from various different angles and their introverted feeling creates an emotional attachment to the type they decide on. For this reason, INFPs are more prone to mistyping than any other type." Taken from HERE.



INFJ's can often be mistaken as Extroverts by others, although they often score accurately as Introverts because they are usually quite aware that they like the concept of people, but struggle to deal with people on a smaller scale. However, since they are a chameleon type, it is easy to see how people could think of them as Extroverts.

An example of an INFJ being mistaken as an Extrovert in television, would be Cassie from The Good Witch series. This link HERE clearly points to Cassie's INFJ qualities, on the show, yet it would be easy to mistake her as an Extrovert as she is the pillar of the community and constantly in people's lives for their big epiphanies. Her love interest, Sam in the show, is an INTJ which is a top fit for an INFJ, along with an ENFP, for compatibility of the functions. As an INFJ myself, I can relate a lot to Cassie. When I was more involved in my community I was constantly active, leading small groups, networking people and giving advice. Even to my smaller groups now, I am often the one gently leading someone to their own self growth or epiphanies simply from my intuitive observation function. I have helped people get accurate mental health and physical health diagnosis's that their doctor could not figure out simply from this trait. Yet, I do not believe my way is the only answer and my rule is to ignore anything that does not feel legitimate or apply. Because of my Autism though and Chronic Illness, I have more need for boundaries, do less and am involved in less community activity than Cassie does, but otherwise I relate to her in almost all regards. If I was healthier in body with more energy and not constantly sensory overloaded, I could see myself being an active member in my community...oh and if it wasn't so religious.

Before I dropped out of most cultural expectations like school, church, small groups ect, I was considered a very social person. I am still considered an Extroverted type if I get thrown into a small group and nobody is talking. I will put myself out there and mimic the personality types of those involved to get them talking or put them at ease. I can seem silly if the situation calls for myself to be silly, to allow others to be comfortable. If no one talks- I will- out of my need to harmonize and make people feel comfortable.

We were at my sister's birthday party and there were three new people added to the group. I automatically gave them a loose personality typing in my head of INTJ male, ISFJ female and INTP male. These were added to a group that consisted of an ENTP male, INTP male, ISFJ female, ENFP female, ENFP male, ENFJ child, INTJ child, ENFP child, and INFJ. The meal was silent other than a few awkward attempts at conversation, even though there were five Extroverts. ENFP's will often be mistaken for Introverts. If they are in a new situation, they will either be extremely show offy and loud or will take a back seat to feel out the situation. Normally it is the first option but it usually takes an area of interest and then they are the star of the show, but in a joking, fun sort of way. Even if they are advanced in areas of philosophy or deep thought they can come off as a clown. ENTP's are not the center of attention unless it is a networking interest or a sarcastic tease. Both are slightly intimidating in new group settings ( ENFP and ENTP.) ENFJ's are very social but enjoy harmony and will wait to draw out attention based on people's interest. ISFJ's value family gatherings and will try to put out a few awkward attempts at conversation that will work excellent if the gathering is made up of mostly S types. There were only two S types in our situation, thus these attempts were slightly appreciated but not really picked up on by the Intuitives as the comments were about solid sensory aspects of dinner.

Thus it was up to me because I was in an environment I was comfortable in, so of course I blabbed about Personality Typing, and made everyone laugh. I had each person conversing about their personality by the end of it, even at the personal cost to myself. I ended up being accurate on each of their personalities which always makes me happy. I can be wrong but it's rare and often due to another person not being healthy in their version of self. My 12 year old INTJ said after the event, "I LOVE you mom. You are so funny. You make people comfortable by making the situation uncomfortable. So by you doing that you look silly but it's exactly what you wanted and they didn't know they needed. It's weird to me how you can draw people out by being odd and mysteriously accurate about themselves and yet somehow it's comfortable while being uncomfortable at first. I just think you are amazing." Which, coming from this child made my heart melt because he is not exactly forthcoming with expressions of mushy love or verbal affirmations, thus it meant a lot. But you can see how in that situation I probably came off as an Extrovert. Also, in these situation no one ever asks what my type is. This happens pretty much every time I bring the conversation around to personality, which is a lot, probably because it's a personal growth interest and aids me in understanding, tolerating and accepting people with compassion instead of a negative emotion.

At functions where personality is talked about, my type and my daughter's ENFJ type is never discussed. Yet, on the internet INFJ material is ample! Why is this? My conclusion is, that outside the computer, the mystery factor, combined with our secondary core Harmonizing function, shows up and takes us out of the spotlight even while we are in it. Both ENFJ's and INFJ's like to harmonize and blend in to make peace. Thus, we put the focus on others consistently, even if we are the ones talking. It's odd but our types are not often discussed  in groups discussing personality offline, because of this approach. Which is probably why writing about it and reading or pinning tons of pins on my type, helps me express out loud without having to actually do that with anyone specific other than my best friend and husband. I tend to take that type of attention off of myself unless it is with my very few core relationships.

Recently, my husband misinterpreted my need for downtime as cold hearted crankiness, when in reality I was just needing some downtime to process. The next day I read him an article called, "21 Things People Don't Realize You're Doing Because You're an Introvert". I actually can't chose a couple points to highlight because every single point was bang on. I highly recommend the easy read if you love an Introvert or are one yourself ( because solidarity sister/brother...)
https://introvertdear.com/news/infj-personality-type-signs/
https://introvertdear.com/news/infj-personality-type-curiously-contradicting/
http://introvertdear.com/news/infj-personality-type-unique-traits/

I may come across as Extrovert but an INFJ is one of the MOST Introverted types. We need ample alone time after conversing to process. We stay up late at night if we don't get this processing time going through events.

Another common mix up is people perceiving an ISFJ as an Extrovert. The ISFJ often knows they are not Extroverted but they are the types to be found in small groups on weekdays, teaching piano after schools or some similar activity, and hosting holiday dinners or at least attending every. SINGLE. one. This is because they deeply value the concepts of community, family and concrete ways of working in the world. ESFJ's can often think of themselves as Introverts because they absorb emotions and need down time because of this, however, they can not get enough of people and often struggle with boundaries. They both love and dislike their need for people ,so often wish they were Introverted or even type themselves as Introverted, if they are not in their healthy boundary filled place in society. The reality in this situation is that often they are simply exhausted Extroverts wanting to be an Introvert to heal, so sometimes get mistaken as this when they do their own testing.

There are many ways one can mistype in Personality, not just in the Extroverted/Introverted categories and I highly recommend this read for more:
https://thoughtcatalog.com/heidi-priebe/2015/07/heres-which-myers-briggs-type-youre-most-likely-to-mistype-as/3/

My rule of thumb in regards to personality is; If you read the articles or watch the video's on Personality Hacker or Michael Pierce or 16 Personalities and feel like they just crawled into your head and explained the weird things you thought no one knew about yourself, you have got an accurate type. If you only feel lukewarm about your entire description or don't feel at least at one point to jump up and say, "YES!" you are probably at least one letter off. My husband tested as a Guardian for years and he hated his result because his personality always felt like something he could not attain to, but finally I sat down with him and took the test with him and he got an ENFP. He actually cried a little reading his result because it FINALLY expressed his soul. Now he can not get enough understanding on ENFP functioning and how that works in the world at large. This understanding has aided him in his relationship with me and our children the most. We can laugh off what would otherwise be great misunderstandings, because we understand our core functions are clashing.

Personality studies opened up a world of acceptance for myself and my family. More than almost any other discovery in my life, it has been the most helpful. I deeply value the insights that come along with this way of relating. Instead of seeing it as a concrete way of WHO people are, I see it as a stepping stone of flexibility, enabling more compassion and understanding. However, I have witnessed the OPPOSITE of this happening when people are unhealthy versions of themselves or do not type themselves accurately or BOTH. Then personality only hinders the process because the information and understanding is mistaken. It is crucially important to Know Thyself. I hope these links help clear up some of the common misconceptions of Extroversion versus Introversion.

Go and Know thyself :)



Here are some of my pin boards:
 Pin board for INFJ quotes: https://www.pinterest.ca/KAlluraMarie/infj-personality-infps-intj-quotes/

Many article links on Personality ( with a focus for INFJ's): https://www.pinterest.ca/KAlluraMarie/infj-article-links-and-mbti-charts/

Pin board for silly and quirky Memes for INFJ's: https://www.pinterest.ca/KAlluraMarie/infj-memes-and-quirky-infj-posters/

and an Honorary ENFP board for my husband: https://www.pinterest.ca/KAlluraMarie/enfp-quotes-and-articles-to-my-hubby-from-his-infj/



4 comments:

S said...

I agree with you here. As an INFP, I am seen as an extremely extroverted person as I immediately connect with people ( even strangers) and can talk and engage for hours with any number of people. But that is not my preference. And there is also a side to me where I have realized that if the topics of conversation is "S" type I do not enjoy such communication, but somehow go along. I really enjoy discussing ideas and abstract or intuitive topics or topics on idealism/humanity rather than what humans do on a daily basis. I do not like to discuss work or any activities ( be it cooking,cleaning,food, going to market, watching t.v. who is buying what or visiting whom ). I like discussing ( or reading/watching/writing ) ideas, knowledge, book, philosophy, humanity, human motives/psychology, art, nature, etc.etc. At home, with my parents, I do not even feel the need to talk or have any kind of conversation. I keep mostly silent. So, I guess, I am a human chameleon or something. But again, I think that I prefer silence and I do not crave for human company too much...I mean I can keep silent for months if there was such a test or a game that tests our endurance capacity ( of not craving human company ).
So, Introversion or extroversion is quite a complex process. But look at the dominant functions. For introverts, Introversion is the dominant function ( be it introverted feeling or thinking or sensing ), extroversion is our secondary function ( be if feeling or thinking ). The dominant function is the most important and preferred function for any types. Secondary functions comes much later. With our secondary function, we can be what we are predominantly not . So, an extrovert can be an introvert ( partly/ sometimes) with his secondary function and vice versa. The secondary function balances( or contradicts ) the dominant function. Also, don't forget that under stress, our inferior functions becomes dominant ( I have read somewhere). So, when I become sick or fall extremely ill, I crave human company or some people around me and then I like to talk a lot too ! In normal times, I am not like that.
Also I agree that having aspergers or sensory processing disorder or being highly sensitive, etc. has a role to play apart from personality types. Maybe introversion becomes more prominent/extreme with aspergers. Or maybe extroversion becomes limited ( even if it is a secondary function of an introvert or even if an introvert is capable of certain extroverted behaviour) with aspergers. I am not sure but maybe.
Both me and my husband are introverts (" I" ) and also "N" ( earlier, my husband was mistyped as "S" )and that is something that has saved a lot of unnecessary discussions or decisions as we both prefer to be quiet and alone, most of the times.
But we both live in a "ESTJ /ISTJ" dominated society/family ( specially, most of his relatives and few of my relatives too) and you can guess the horror we have to face in family get togethers !! But as we are ageing now, and live far away from our extended families, we mostly play the role of a spectator when we are there and we also feel amused and sometimes inspired by their activities :) THe only thing that is missing/lacking/ much left to be desired is the conversation. The conversation and communication is dominated by their "S" type topics and activities.
Also, as we age , we learn how to protect our personalities/identities and desires and how to just get along in spite of major differences. For example, my brother and I have completely (well, nearly ) opposite personality types yet we are extremely cordial to each other and avoid " conflicting topics" because all these years we have realized that certain things don't match and won't match at all, so no point in discussing. I wish my relationship with other opposing personalities was like that too, but unfortunately it is not and I just tend to get along /get going even if I do not like something.

asheskyler said...

Sometimes I wonder if people would resist the MBTI stuff less if it wasn't called a "personality quiz" since it's more geared on the way and order your brain processes information. I kinda wish the functions had been better explained to me from the start since that really sheds some light on the whole confusing "I'm an introvert who likes people" or "I'm an extravert that doesn't like people". I generally prefer to recluse away, but if irrelevant trivia and random data or puzzles come up, I'm the life of the party! I get so geared around geeky nerdy stuff like that people tend to forget I'm actually a grumpy little hermit who could go three weeks without human contact and then want another six weeks alone.

I think a lot of pockets of the internet are ruled by introverts, but socially lifey things (super scientific technical terms) like Facebook and baby tips/networking sites are dominated by extraverts, for obvious reasons. There are people there and people persons are attracted to peoples. Us introverts are grooming our inner crazy cat ladies and hide in the shadows of Pinterest's kitty galleries and praying nobody comments on our pins so we don't have to interact, unless it's something thought-provoking, and then they wish they hadn't commented because we'll rattle their ears off. :P

But that also leads to a stark desert of articles on extraverts. I can find scores and scores of articles on my type, INTJ, but heaven forbid I find anything helpful on any extraverts I want to research.

Kmarie A. said...

S: Yes, as you know i feel the same about conversation. I can go for long periods without conversing too!
Yes they are very complex and you are right they are FUNCTIONS which most people do not think of nor do they realize we have the opposing secondary function. People think of these as just personality frou frou but it has its own science and it is about functioning...
Hey I do that when I am ill too! I had a very painful experience after a 6 root canal and filling and that night I just kept clinging to my husband and I am NEVER clingy or very cuddly but when I am in those S moments- I so am! And when I am sick I call my mother and text people I wouldnt normally text. It kind of sucks and must be confusing.
Yes there is so much to being YOU! So many layers. Excellent points.
I agree with doing that more as we age. I do that too.
Love these thoughts!

Ashe: YES!!!! Exactly- it is about the way you process! it is a FUNCTIOn which most do not get. It really does shed light on the complex process.
Lol I am also the life of the party if it is geeky nerdy interests! And I can also go to a grumpy hermit for weeks.
OHHHHHHH agreed! I freaking HATE facebook. Tried it twice and quit it twice. Too frou frou and annoying. Yes def obvious reasons!!! LOL this made me laugh. So true. I am the Pinterest person. And I SO FEEL That about comments on PIns. I get panicky. LOL- I HATE it. and yes to the thought provoking.
Yes that is true...I have found it tougher to find articles on my dear ENFJ and my ENFP though there are more than ES types...I feel the worst for Extroverted S's as most of the literature on the net is nill or negative...
Great thoughts! Thank you!

asheskyler said...

No kidding about the negative ESxx articles. I have very strong suspicions my oldest is a ESFP, and I haven't been too impressed with the articles I've found so far. I think Personality Hacker had some of the realistic and informative ones, but other than that, the best I can get is those funny MBTI lists like "With a Spork: ESFP draws a smiley face on it and names it Gary". Side note from personal observation: ESFP would use a pink marker that glitters, because it's more fun and pretty than a normal Sharpie.