Coined by famous psychiatrist Carl Jung, the terms "introversion" and "extraversion" refer to the attitudes people use to direct their energy. While all people have the ability to be introverted or extroverted, each has a natural inclination toward one more than the other. About 25 percent of people are estimated to have an introverted personality type. In a society where extroversion is prized, introverts are often labeled shy, loners or depressed. However, introverts simply have a different way of internalizing the world.
Value Private Time
An introvert's main focus is within his head, preferring the internal world of ideas and concepts, whereas an extrovert prefers the external world of people and activities. An introvert is often territorial and protective of his private space and time. This personality type also is protective of his private thoughts and very selective when it comes to sharing these thoughts with others. He is often happy to be alone and can feel lonely in a crowd. As introverts re-energize from within, he can feel drained when around large groups of people and, accordingly, may dislike attending large gatherings. He also may require private time to recharge after attending such events.
A Few Select Friendships and Activities
Introverts often are not the type to take on many activities. Instead, this personality type is more likely to carefully select a few interests and explore each deeply. Likewise, introverts form few attachments; however, those formed are deep. This type prefers a few deep friendships to several casual acquaintances and will typically prefer doing activities with a few close acquaintances rather than a large group.
Preference for Solo Situations
Introverts also may come across as reserved or quiet and reluctant to meet new people. However, introverts are not necessarily shy but instead prefer personal and one-on-one communication. Additionally, introverts often prefer to avoid group activities. Instead, this type prefers solo to group work and does not enjoy being the center of attention.
Require Time to Think
Introverts also place great importance on thought and reflection. The introvert requires time for concentration and deep thought and can easily become absorbed in her personal thoughts and ideas. She also can become irritated if she does not have adequate alone time. This personality type prefers to think before speaking and may even rehearse a dialogue in her head before actually engaging. An introvert spends so much time thinking that she may frequently be too slow to act or may neglect to confirm that her inner thoughts match the outer reality.