Last week we defined INTROVERTEXTROVERT, and AMBIVERT.  This week we cover common misconceptions about these terms.  

We already covered the first of our 3 misconceptions: We’re all one or the other, an introvert or an extrovert.  NOPE!  As I mentioned last week, it’s a continuous scale. In fact, most of us are in the middle. We’re AMBIVERTS.  We need a balance of social stimulus and solitude.

balancing introvert extrovert
Image Unsplash @ mischieveous_penguins
Ambiverts need a balance…


MISCONCEPTION #2: Introverts are Shy.


Not always!

misconceptions about introverts and shy people - Image Unsplash @ jackieboylhart
Image Unsplash @ jackieboylhart

Remember the definition: INTROVERTS are internally focused in terms of their attention and their energy

Shy people are more socially anxious.

INTROVERTS are not necessarily socially anxious. Introverts can choose to be social and interact with others; they just know it will deplete their energy.

Got it? Shy ≠ Introvert


MISCONCEPTION #3: We should all seek to be Extroverts.


No way!

Extroverts get more than their fair share of airtime.  But Introverts have many valued strengths!

Introverts are often better listeners.

  • Listening is a superpower! As Jill Nykoliation mentioned in our conversation about communication skills for leaders, extroverts need to “hold space” and listen.

Introverts may be more authentic.

  • Extroverts may be more prone to showmanship. Hmm…

Introverts are less prone to addiction

  • Extroverts’ affinity for finding the next pleasurable sensation makes them more prone to addiction.

Introverts are less likely to swear at you. 

  • According to linguistic professor Darin Flynn whom I interviewed for podcast episode #23,  “sweariness” is correlated with extroversion.” (❤️ that word!) So extroverts are more likely to swear. Is that a bad thing? Well, it’s not a good thing.

image unsplash @ etienne girardet

Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, I recommend this book, “QUIET: The Power of Introverts in A World That Can’t Stop Talking.” Author Susan Cain debunks misconceptions about introverts and highlights important reasons why ALL of us should understand and value introverts, the 1/3 of us who are the thinkers, the creators, and the innovators

Quiet by Susan Cain - misconceptions about introverts


If you haven’t listened yet, I hope you ENJOY THE PODCASTPlease email me anytime to let me know what you think or to share your ideas.  

Please forward this blog to anyone who might like to learn about their personality and communication skills.  Thank you! 

Talk soon,

Dr. Andrea Wojnicki
Chief Talker & Communication Coach

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