Everywhere you look there are articles and stories about introverts and extroverts. But did you know that there are 4 different types of introverts?
If you look into each personality aspect, there are different types within. I’m an introvert and the topic of introversion has always interested me, so I have read countless articles and studies in this area.
Psychologist Jonathan Cheek and his colleagues discovered that there are four different types of introverts: social, thinking, anxious, and restrained. Every introvert has varying degrees of these traits, which makes sense considering introvert is a huge term that has various meanings and traits within itself.
So, let’s look at these types of introverts to help you decide which one you fit into. You can also take a free test afterwards.
1. Social Introvert
A social introvert is the cliché type of introvert if you will. It is the type of introvert who likes to be alone and prefers not to socialize. If they have to, they prefer to keep their group fairly small and close-knit.
Social introverts get their energy from being alone – one of the biggest traits of introversion. Being around people drains them emotionally, mentally, and sometimes even physically. They will prefer to stay at home rather than to go to a party or at least socialize in a small group.
This type of introversion is often the type that gets mistaken for shyness. Being socially introverted doesn’t necessarily make you shy or having anxiety about social situations. Nor does it mean that you lack social skills. It simply means that you prefer solitude over spending your time being surrounded by a lot of other people.
2. Thinking Introvert
A thinking introvert is somebody who likes to think – about anything and everything. The perfect word to sum up a thinking introvert is pensive. You can also call this introvert type a deep thinker. Being self-reflective and sometimes painfully self-conscious is one of the traits of being a thinking introvert. This tendency to overthink leaves you analyzing situations, conversations, and memories.
Cheek claims thinking introverts are “capable of getting lost in an internal fantasy world. But it’s not in a neurotic way; it’s in an imaginative and creative way.“
3. Anxious Introvert
A self-explanatory title for this introvert: an individual who gets anxious in social situations. The anxious introvert might not stay away from the party because they enjoy solitude. The reason is that they experience a high state of anxiety, self-consciousness, and/or awkwardness when in, or even thinking about, social situations.
This kind of introversion ties in with worrying about previous social interactions and why things are the way they are. As a result, these introverts feel awkward and painfully anxious in social situations.
If you define yourself as an anxious introvert, there are ways to cope with your issues. Therapy and counselling can be a very useful tool in finding coping strategies for anxiety, building your social confidence, and moving you out of the anxious introvert box.
4. Restrained Introvert
Perhaps the least-known type of introversion there is, restrained introverts are people who take a while to “warm up.” They may enjoy being around people, but only after they become used to the situation and the people. Another word for this type of introversion is reserved and preferring to observe and then think before speaking or acting.
Whilst there are, no doubt, countless other types of introverts, Cheek’s starter model is definitely interesting to read. I, personally, can see parts of myself in all of these introvert types. Instead of pigeonholing myself to one or another, I’m somewhere on a spectrum embodying slight parts of each of the four traits.
Which Type of Introvert Are You? A Free Personality Test
If you’d like to see which of these types of introverts you fit most into, take the test below to help you decide:
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