Study says introverts are miserable, near suicidal dweeb-balls of walking death and despair unless they start acting more like extroverts

Ok, I’m embellishing it a bit, but probably not by all that much:

Extroverts, those outgoing, gregarious types who wear their personalities on their sleeve, are generally happier, studies show. Some research also has found that introverts, who are more withdrawn in nature, will feel a greater sense of happiness if they act extroverted. (Source Link)

Yeah I have a word for those happy go lucky gregarious and fabulous extroverts who just feel this compulsive need to shower the world with their hip hip happiness:  GO SCRATCH.

I don’t believe introverts as a whole are less happy.  They just don’t feel the need to demonstrate this every minute of every hour of every day to everyone within a 500 mile radius.

There’s one element of this study that seems to be particularly absent too: the failure to recognize that introverts can in fact be naturally extroverted: when it comes to people they already know and are already comfortable being with.  We value real connections that are sincere and meaningful.  That’s why I can’t abide by being in a crowd full of people I don’t know well and haven’t had the time to form meaningful bonds with.  Somehow the friendliness, the cheerfulness and happiness feels fake without it.

And being surrounded by people who are acting fake, being fake, and fake-smiling at you until you leave the room, at which point the gossip about your hairstyle and choice of Walmart brand flannel starts to fly fast and furious… yeah… doesn’t exactly strike me as an exercise in true happiness.  I’ll just go read a book, thank you very much.

That’s another thing, the presumption that extroverts are happier, when the real truth is that they merely LOOK happier, whereas an introvert might look despondent and depressed when he’s at home, in his mind he’s really like:

Disco Dancing Pair

It’s Saturday night and I’m staying in!

So this idea that we have to play a role (the role of an extrovert) in order to experience more happiness doesn’t really wash.  There is a danger of course of becoming a complete social recluse, but if you already have an inner circle of best friends and a loving family, what else do you need, really?

24 Responses to Study says introverts are miserable, near suicidal dweeb-balls of walking death and despair unless they start acting more like extroverts

  1. ava July 26, 2013 at 7:57 AM #

    i don’t know about other extroverts, but I can be very happy and very sad all at the same time. I escape pain as much as i can, I try not to think about things that hurt me the most, so I ‘get busy’ with entertaiment, people, parties, art, conversations, pleasures in general. the joy that I get from these small things is genuine, not fake as you describe it, I literally thrive on meeting new people, new places, new experiences. I don’t show people my dark-side-of-the-moon not because I’m being fake and try to portray myself as one of those shiny-happy-people-holding-hands, it’s rather because that would require me thinking and focusing on my problems in the first place, which I really avoid, besides most people would never get it anyway and let’s not forget what secrets the dark side of the moon holds. yep… nazis ;)

    • Frank Swift July 26, 2013 at 12:04 PM #

      Oh I know extros have their positive traits too, but introverts here are usually maligned and treated as abnormal that it really frosts my choco chip cookies, so I feel the need to balance things out by calling extros a naughty name every now and then.

      I see you watched the movie too. ;-)

  2. Cautiously Pessimistic July 26, 2013 at 1:32 PM #

    There is a danger of course of becoming a complete social recluse…

    I can go a year and a half without any personal human interaction before my mind starts jumping the rails. On the other hand, I can barely go 15 minutes in a crowd before having to pretend like I’m not exhausted and would like to gnaw my arm off to get away. My happiness is found in solitude or small, well-known groups of people. And computers. Solitude, small groups of people, and computers. Books, too. And cage fighting.

  3. Frank Swift July 26, 2013 at 1:42 PM #

    Only a year and a half? Gee, I thought you were an introvert. ;-)

  4. Cautiously Pessimistic July 26, 2013 at 1:58 PM #

    Frank, read what I wrote. A year and a half before my mind jumps the rails. After that, my records became somewhat muddled. I’m reasonably certain I remained reclusive for another 6 months, at least; but for all I know I went on some kind of Ferris Bueller kick. It’s a page in my life filled with unintelligible scribblings. ;)

    • Frank Swift July 26, 2013 at 2:46 PM #

      Hmmm, that definitely does a lot to explain whole gaps in my life stretching several years that I have no recollection of…

  5. geoarrge July 26, 2013 at 3:52 PM #

    The big question is: go out where, and do what with whom?

    • Frank Swift July 26, 2013 at 4:51 PM #

      Well I’d say the world is your oyster! Just make sure you don’t wind up in the wrong neighborhood…

      Dangerous Neighborhood

  6. Butterfly Flower July 27, 2013 at 2:14 PM #

    Gosh, you’d probably hate me IRL! I confess: I’m one of those infuriatingly happy energetic extroverts.

    In my case, I wouldn’t say my happiness is fake. It’s just my default setting. I almost died a few times, so I like being alive and try my best to live everyday to its fullest.

    I don’t know about other extroverts, but I can be very happy and very sad all at the same time. I escape pain as much as i can, I try not to think about things that hurt me the most, so I ‘get busy’ with entertaiment, people, parties, art, conversations, pleasures in general.”

    Exactly. Don’t let the sad stuff rain on your parade. Like if something makes me feel sad I’ll go Google images of puppies and than feel better.

    Concerning my interactions with introverts:

    I don’t mean to bully them when I try to get them to act outgoing, I just misinterpret their behavior. Like, I assume their withdrawn-quietness is because they are shy, or sad.

    • Frank Swift July 27, 2013 at 3:57 PM #

      Gosh, you’d probably hate me IRL!

      No because I actually know you. It’s the extroverted strangers that give me cooties.

  7. an observer July 27, 2013 at 5:09 PM #

    I read somewhere a theory that said extroverts brains drive them to seek stimulation because they are deficient in being less able to experience it.

    Whereas introverts are so sensitive, we need less of it.

    And i dont hate extroverts either. But i do hate the cultural and workplace pressures to be one.

    • Frank Swift July 27, 2013 at 5:23 PM #

      And i dont hate extroverts either. But i do hate the cultural and workplace pressures to be one.

      Totally, even my best friend who is an introvert sometimes urges me to be more extroverted in order to network better. Network this. :-P

    • a July 27, 2013 at 11:33 PM #

  8. wkhg July 28, 2013 at 11:51 AM #

    Society likes to make too much of the introvert/extrovert thing. It’s really pretty simple: Extroverts get energized from socializing with other people. Introverts get their “recharge” from being alone. Neither one is better or worse than the other. Also, lots of introverts (myself included) are totally fine in social/networking situations. They just need to go home after a certain amount of time, and be by themselves, or they will burn out.

    As a kid, I loved having my friends come over to play–but I was REALLY happy when their moms picked them up, too. I had a hard time with slumber parties and sleepovers as an older child, because I enjoyed the party/company, but by bedtime I was so totally ready to be in my own space. As an adult, I have to socialize a lot for work purposes, but I’m OK as long as it’s not a ridiculously long event and I don’t have too many of them in one week. You’d never know I’m not an extrovert except for the fact that I have to go home and be alone in order to recharge my batteries.

    • Frank Swift July 28, 2013 at 3:41 PM #

      There are moments when it looks like the life of the party too, but OMG it saps energy more than a Hummer saps fuel. I remember one almost all night outing with friends and being near comatose for days afterwards.

  9. an observer July 28, 2013 at 6:23 PM #

    Many workplaces are feminised, in that they focus very strongly on interpersonal, eq-based emotional manipulative skills. Actual technical skills are helpful, but often deemphasised.

    One of the things i do is manage a database. Lots of the users are pretty useless, but i can cope with that. What gets me is the requirement to massage their egos whenever they screw something up, which is often.

    Typically it goes like this. Guy screws up and calls me. I tell him: do this. Problem is resolved.

    Girl screws up. She talks about how hard her life is, now bad her day is going and how difficult the system is to use. I tell her what to do. She questions it, and suggests a lame alternative, which after ten years with this program, i know will not work and will never happen.

    Girl then spends irredeemable time thinking of ways to avoid the problem that all avoid the one crucial step: learning how to use it properly.

    Oh, and the last step. Girl then gets promoted for ‘innovative’ suggestions.

    • Frank Swift July 28, 2013 at 6:37 PM #

      We must work for the same people. ;-)

    • a July 29, 2013 at 3:03 AM #

      You just described some of my worst working experiences in a few small paragraphs.

      There are far too many qualified and deserving men being overlooked for raises and promotions to elevate younger, under-qualified women who really only know how to play socially manipulative games to succeed. Sadly, some of them become the hiring managers.

      The mismanagement, emotional manipulation, and abuse really needs to stop, but I only see it becoming worse in the future.

      Men really need to wake up and learn how to fight back, even if just to protect their own jobs.

      I’m horrified, angered, frustrated, saddened, and amused to read your comment! Thank you!

  10. Hannah August 11, 2013 at 3:00 AM #

    Hey Frank :)

    SNAP!

    Great post – found several Aces in there I can keep.

    Tricky business being an introvert in an extrovert world…. finding your place and what not.

    I told my dad I’m not sure about where I fit yet and he told me he still hasn’t figured it out for himself ;)

    I’ll be re-reading this several times for sure – thanks for sharing your wisdom!

    Hannah

    • Frank Swift August 11, 2013 at 11:36 AM #

      You’re welcome Hannah, I enjoy some of the things I read about introversion, always some new revelation about it that I like to blog on from time to time.

  11. Hollis Bush August 28, 2014 at 3:29 AM #

    Good post but for me its just about putting on a show for the people. Im introverted an actor, and musician but I always throw on this little act for people to make it seem like I am one of the most coolest people there are. I wear the clothes, shoes, listen to the same type of music as everyone but the truth is I am the total opposite of what I portray everyday at school.
    It is nothing but a show to me and I am center stage the world revolves around me for a simple moment until I get tired of them and reveal my true colors I could care less for all these half bred people that would never accept me for me. They believe what they see at school is me and that is further from the truth.
    I am artistic, I love music but I would never listen to lets say rap or metal like I live and breathe that. I love to write when I get a good thought for a story I can write away, if you give me a good topic I would normally write about it in various of ways. I can’t write in one formal way for the duration of more than 20 minutes.
    I love people but I hate being in crowds, I hate having too many friends which people find weird. and I hate with a passion girls who are self %^&*ing centered.

  12. StefZero June 5, 2015 at 1:22 PM #

    Same with me :( i feel very depressed because God created me like this :((

  13. haha August 16, 2015 at 4:39 AM #

    lmao

  14. Don August 20, 2016 at 11:28 AM #

    In my case, I’m unhappy because I am forced to constantly interacting in an extrovert world, and it leaves me exhausted and feeling trapped. Even my closest friends don’t seem to understand this nor does my partner. And so I have no time to myself, or at least that’s my perception and how I feel. So I think this “just act like an extrovert” is horse pucky.

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