Your Guide To Interacting With An Introvert

Don’t get mad at the introvert in your life for shutting down; as this illustration explains, it’s just their way of coping.

Are you worried that your boyfriend or girlfriend, or your husband or wife is a passive-aggressive pain in the ass, who is purposefully trying to drive you crazy by avoiding all contact with the outside world? Cartoonist Schroeder Jones feared that his ex-boyfriend believed just that. In truth, the poor guy was just an introvert. So he made a comic explaining exactly why introverts behave the way they do.

The illustration plays off an accepted truth about introverts: Instead of finding crowds energizing, like extroverts do, they find them draining. The graphic explains: Introverts make their own energy instead of deriving that energy from other people. Since energy is a limited resource for them, introverts only want to give that energy, in other words, socialize with people who truly appreciate and understand them. So the next time you meet an introvert, don’t assume he’s blowing you off; though, if you’re way too extroverted, then he may very well be.

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  • wwiiggss

    Substitute psychopath for introvert and it still holds true. Give me a break... human behavior is far more varied, rich and complex than this bogus us/them hamster ball analogy would allow.

  • Tina Florence

    I just had an introvert and his spouse over for a party and I watched him very closely and I the extrovert was very, very quiet. (think Twitty Bird when you say this). He talked about himself a lot. Was very rude. Did not want to help at all with food preparation and when he did help, he suddenly did not know how to do things (preparing simple things). He was ignored with the puppy (it's a puppy get over it) and prefers cats. Well cats just lay there and do nothing. However, the introvert wanted everything done their way and seemed bored and unhappy when things did not go his way. Introverts are very hard to get along with. I just enjoyed watching the "lack" of actual interaction. I think all introverts should take a class on how to socialize, period. And another class on "You can't have it your way all of the time" that is unless you just stay at home and sulk.

  • gertrud.rasmussen

    Being an introvert myself, I there is nothing in this guy I can recognize. This guy sounds like a terrible person who was never taught basic manners. I always help with food preparation , or at least offer, as my parents taught me. I work very well with others and I don't like talking about myself.

    As Himadri said not an introvert, just immature.

  • Himadri Dioscuri Mandal

    Introverts rarely talk about themselves. I believe he is extremely immature. And he seems like a whiny person. It is never a either-or scenario. People exist on a introvert-extrovert scale.

  • Rachel White

    You cannot judge all introverts by this guy and people like him. In fact you said "he talked about himself a lot" and didn't like it when people ignored him. These don't sound like introvert traits. This person is just childish and has no social skills, which has nothing to do with introversion.

  • Tina Florence

    To all of the introverts. I guess you should just stay home and lock the doors to say away from others. Extroverts make their own energy. That is why we are out there in the world. We have energy to spare. We do not absorb introverts' energy. Introverts seem to me to be nothing but very selfish people. If you are not UP TO SOCIAL INTERACTIONS THEN STAY HOME. DO NOT come over to someone's home, sit down and then ignore them. THAT IS RUDE!!! Also do not come over and stare at your iphone and ignore the other people in the room. IT IS RUDE!!! By the way all people have problems, even introverts and we listen to you go on and on. Oh I am so fat, Oh I can not find a job, oh my health is bad because I will not exercise (too many people, germs and noise at the gym). Well just find a cave and live in it. OKAY!!??!! The article above was so very, very, lame. Now all introverts look in the mirror and repeat, "I AM AN INTROVERT, I AM SELFISH, I AN SELF-CENTERED."

  • Rachel White

    A lot of the problems you are describing are not introvert traits. We don't generally ignore people, we are more likely to be observing everything from the sidelines. Staring at your phone or complaining about personal problems are things both intro- and extraverts do. (You don't have to go to a noisy gym to exercise, you can hike or go running outside). I agree, the explanation in the infographic about "energy use" is super-oversimplified. That is not all there is to it, so don't be insulted by it.

  • Mematron Mematron

    That's exactly right. Introverts are capable of not being around people. It was funny as a kid when my parents would, "THINK" that they were punishing me by sending me to my room. Hell, I was about to go there anyway.

    The diagram was being too nice. The guy was resisting calling everyone else a psychic vampire. I don't know but something about California, where i'm from. There are a ton of PV's there. Other than that, the weather is awesome.

    I am like Blade. I have all the strengths of the nerds but none of their weaknesses. I have a family. I have a social life. I'm successful. But I can, at times go into my shell. Everyone who knows me, well. I stress the word, "Well" finds that A - O.K., because I tend to talk a lot in waves. It's a relief for them.

    Now back to my video games, ya bastids!

  • Star Black

    LOL! kina harsh there introverts like nothing better than being alone in their house. For them social interaction drains their energy( I agree that extroverts don't drain others energy but exude it like a sun, drawing others who feed off of their rays) Introverts are selfish because they like it better that way, life is easier when you spend your energy on what you like for you and you alone.

    bashing them cause you aren't that way isn't gona help them relate. just as the comic said they need to find the right atmosphere and trust me boy do they blab and for days

  • Kyodai Panda

    I have never seen anything that explains who I am so deeply, and, as such, never felt so understood. This is beyond marvelous. Beyond words. Thank you for making this, whoever you are who did it. This is so perfect.

  • That was pretty cute. I must confess I'm getting tired of the whole 'gain their energy' argument, though. Especially since recent research on introversion and extraversion seems to suggest it's more about how we process stimulation with introverts being far more sensitive to it and extraverts requiring far more stimulation to reach their peak level of comfort.

    It's less about gaining energy, and about how much you can take to be satisfied. The internet and introvert culture has this all backwards.

    Then again, that's just semantics - I think this is pretty on the ball otherwise.

  • Paula Paulińska

    I'm an introvert and I hate when extroverts start to talk about themselves, their problems, problems of their families, acquaintances of their families... about their health and diseases.... As if the extroverts couldn't live on without getting everything off their chests.

    For me: an extrovert is a person keeping a lot of toxic energy inside and MUST clean themselves using other people around! I really don't care about all of their live - I have to listen to it because I try to be polite. Extroverts - please think about it!

  • Veritum

    Love this! The energy bit explains it perfectly for me. I always try to explain to friends/family that i'm like a rechargeable battery. Sure I enjoy going out, but socializing is hard work! Like running a camera flash of a standard AA battery. I can do it for so long but once the batteries drained it needs to disappear for a complete recharge. And of course, the more social intense something is - the quicker the battery drains :S I agree with the person who said extroverts generate there energy with other people (as opposed to absorbing). I don't think think they're stealing mine - just that i don't have the ability to recharge from theirs :) Cuppa tea, sofa and cuddle with the dogs for me :)

  • Brady

    I'm an introvert, but while the "silence is not an insult" thing is fine, the rest is self-absorbed/entitled/victim-y. It could use a "hey introverts, if you're lonely you may have to get over yourself and do something that is technically extroverted and maybe even tiring" counterpoint.

  • Jay

    I don't like being an extrovert,I just say too much, people do indeed get tired of me, I get even tired of myself.. I don't want to become an obnoxious person..

  • Rachel White

    Firstly, be your own best friend: find out who you truly are, what you love to do and focus on that. Secondly, I find that people are only annoying when all they do is complain. If you find yourself talking a lot, that's fine, introverts like to listen! But pay attention to what you're saying. Think positive thoughts, focus on what is good about people and things around you, and make the things you say uplifting things. If people just groan and call you naive for that, maybe you don't want to be friends with negative people.