It may surprise you to learn that I am an introvert. It was pretty easy for me to figure out that I was an introvert, as I feel recharged and have more energy when I spend time alone. I’ve always spent a lot of time by myself and I really do prefer it.

What Is An Introvert?

What is an introvert? The word introvert comes from Latin. The word intro means “inward” and vertere means “turning”. That’s a pretty good way of describing us introverts, as we tend to turn inward mentally. 

A person on the other end of the spectrum is known as an extrovert.  Extroverts thrive in social situations and actually gain energy when they spend time with other people.

Having said that, it’s important to know that introverts don’t hate being social. It just tires us out and we need time to recharge afterwards. Also, introverts will prefer social engagements with fewer people, especially people that we know very well. This lets us have deep, intimate conversations – our favourite kind!

Introvert vs Extrovert Characteristics:

Do you know if you are an introvert or an extrovert? To help you figure out, here’s a chart showing the different characteristics of Introverts vs Extroverts. Which characteristics do you generally display?

Introvert Characteristics:Extrovert Characteristics:
* Recharge by spending time alone* Gain energy by spending time with other people
* Feel drained after socializing, even if they enjoyed it* Feel drained when they spend too much time alone
* Rich inner world* Primarily interested in the external world
* Prefer a few close relationships* Have large social networks
* Think before they speak* Think as they speak
* Can be seen as quiet and reserved* Can be seen as outgoing and energetic
* Like advance notice of changes* Like surprises
* Prefer one-on-one or small group conversations* Prefer large group conversations
* Don’t prefer to be the center of attention* Enjoy being the center of attention

What Causes People To Be An Introvert Or Extrovert?

Whether you are an introvert or an extrovert is determined mostly by your innate temperament (how you prefer to interact with the world). So, the short answer is that you were born that way! This preference will stay with a person for their whole life. Estimates show that anywhere from 30-50% of people are introverts. 

In general, introverts prefer calm environments and smaller groups over an extrovert who prefers a stimulating environment and large groups. Now, keep in mind that no two people are alike. While introverts prefer calm and quiet, each person has a different tolerance level. Think of it as a scale, with one end being “Introverts” and the other end being “Extroverts”. Each person will fall along this scale on a different point.  Plus, depending on the situation, a person can act more introverted or extroverted than they generally are.

Why Is All Of This Important?

So, who cares?  Why does it matter if you are an introvert or an extrovert?  Well, if you are in the right environment for you, then you will thrive.  If not, you struggle to fit in and use up precious energy.  You will feel depleted, without knowing the true reason. 

I know sales people who are introverts.  They are amazing sales people, but they know they are introverts.  So, they make it a point to have quiet time in their schedule that allows them to recharge for the next event or the next day. 

It’s important to understand your temperament.  Work with it and you will lead a happier, more fulfilling life!


Until my next blog post, here’s wishing you lots of joy and happiness!

With love,


Hi! I'm Joanne. I’m a Canadian Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CMA). Money management is a life skill that I passionately believe all people need to learn. As an accountant, I love helping people understand numbers and money. At BuildingJoyAndHappiness, I share my tips to money management and make understanding finances simple.

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