Introvert And Extrovert Personality – Which Is Best?

We all have very unique personality traits that make us who we are.

Introvert and extrovert personality are at opposite ends of a sliding scale where most of us are more of one than the other in our social interactions.

There are pros and cons for the different personality types, so it makes our world an interesting place. 

Unfortunately, some people make comparisons and wonder why they can’t be more like someone else. It may seem like they came out on the short end of the stick. 

For Christians, they may wonder if God can even use them when they consider the pitfalls of their unique qualities.

Today we are going to look at introvert and extrovert personality and if one is better than the other. The answer will be from a Biblical perspective. 

What are the differences between introvert and extrovert personality? 

Our personality differences show up quickly in social situations. Extroverts often like to be the center of attention while introverts have social anxiety and hate small talk. 

The idea of personality has been studied for some time with The Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung being one of the first. He had an active practice in the early 1900s.

There are many personality tests available, but the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is the most popular. It divides people into 16 groups, with different kinds of introvert and extrovert personality types.

An unofficial version of the test can be taken for free online. (1)  But if you want a more thorough and official evaluation, with guided interpretation you need a certified MBTI practitioner. (2) It is also available at some workplaces or schools and runs about $60.  

Photo of two women back to back facing opposite directions and the words Extrovert and Introvert Personality
Extrovert and Introvert Personality

For our purposes, we are going to cover just the basics, things that are quite obvious. 

Here are some of the characteristics of an introverted personality.  

  1. Works better alone
  2. Is often nervous about making new friends
  3. Loves solitary activities
  4. Prefers deep and meaningful one-on-one conversations
  5. Re-energizes by spending alone time
  6. Writes about thoughts and feelings
  7. Reflective and cautious but often has valuable insights
  8. Hates being at the center of attention
  9. Often daydreams about the future
  10. Prefers solitude
  11. Has a small group of close friends
  12. Prefers small groups for social settings
  13. Exceptional listener
  14. Thinks before speaking. 

As you can imagine, the extroverted personality types are quite the opposite of their counterparts. 

  1. Enjoys working in groups
  2. Enjoys meeting new people
  3. Are social butterflies and are considered a “people person” 
  4. Loves small talk or just talking about anything
  5. Re-energizes in social environments
  6. Talks about thoughts and feelings
  7. Spontaneous and action-oriented
  8. Doesn’t mind being in the spotlight and often is the life of the party
  9. More focused and in the moment
  10. Prefers spending time with others
  11. Has a large circle of friends
  12. Loves large groups and social activities
  13. Talk more than they listen
  14. Thinks out loud

I am so glad you asked. Most of us fall somewhere between the extremes of introvert and extrovert personality.

Those that fall on the exact middle of the spectrum are considered ambiverts, according to Krsiten Fuller, M.D. in her article published in June of 2023 by Choosing Therapy. (3)

These individuals usually adjust well in different situations. They can navigate large social gatherings and relate well to both introvert and extrovert personality types. But they are just as comfortable in a quiet place with a new book.    

An omnivert is at one of the extreme ends of the personality spectrum.

  • They have great difficulty balancing their introverted or extroverted tendencies.
  • They are overly outgoing or extremely shy people.
  • It takes extreme effort to move in the opposite direction.
  • Flexibility is difficult for them. 
Diagram of the introvert and extrovert personality spectrum
The introvert and extrovert personality spectrum

What are the problems with introvert and extrovert personality?

Both introverts and extroverts can face challenges. Regardless of our strengths, those same qualities can easily turn into liabilities without proper control.

The very thing that attracts single people to each other can down the road drive them crazy. I have seen it happen in my two marriages.

Introverts tend to be incredibly good listeners so when you need a shoulder to cry on they are the ones to go to. Unfortunately, they face some challenges also.

  • They often withdraw and end up isolated without meaningful social connections.
  • They often overthink things and spend excessive amounts of time focusing on their feelings. This tendency makes it hard to take action and make decisions.
  • Because so much of their time is spent inside their own heads, they have difficulty expressing themselves.
  • They find networking a challenge so may miss out on career opportunities
  • They like comfort and familiarity. New experiences are not usually on their bucket list. Thus they can miss out on opportunities to grow and learn.

Just because your comfort zone is a crowd does not mean that your interactions will not come back to bite you at some point. The extroverted personality has these pitfalls:

  • They often become overcommitted, not wanting to say no to social opportunities. Thus they can experience burnout.
  • They often are impulsive, not thinking through the possible outcomes.
  • They are people pleasers. Their seeking external validation can be exhausting and overwhelming to others.
  • They are uncomfortable with solitude. So when their body needs a rest from stimulation they often neglect this part of self-care.
  • They may have strained relationships because of their tendency to dominate conversations.

As perfect as this personality type may seem, they too face some pitfalls.

  • May have difficulty in decision-making if they have to choose between socializing or spending time alone.
  • Being misunderstood by others. They don’t fit neatly into either introvert or extrovert personality.
  • Difficulty setting boundaries. They may feel pressured to bounce back and forth between socializing and spending time alone to please whatever crowd they happen to be with.
  • Sometimes they have an identity crisis as they don’t see themselves as in one camp or the other.

As you probably already know, extremes in anything can create unique challenges for anyone. It is a difficult place to be.

Introvert and extrovert personality – which is best?

If you are trying to figure out which is better on the introversion-extroversion scale, it depends on where you look for your answer.

Unfortunately, introverts get a bad rap in many circles. This is emphasized in a book by Susan Cain, “Quiet: The Power Of Introverts In A World That Can’t Stop Talking.”. Forbes did a review of her book and this is their takeaway. 

” … personality shapes our lives as profoundly as gender and race, and where you fall on the introvert-extrovert spectrum is the single most important aspect of your personality. Introverts may make up nearly half the population, but Cain says they are second-class citizens.” (4)

But what our culture considers best is not where we should be deriving our value from. It will disappoint us many times regardless of which side of the spectrum you are on. 

What the Bible says about introvert and extrovert personality 

You will not find the words “introvert” or “extrovert” in the Bible, but it describes both. So as you read the following Scriptures, try to guess which personality they are talking about. 

  1. “A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.” Proverbs 18:2 ESV

2. “Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent, and discerning if they hold their tongues.” Proverbs 17:28 NIV

“Intelligent people think before they speak; what they say is then more persuasive.” Proverbs 16:23 GNT

Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10 ESV

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17 NIV

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11 NIV

“Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,” Acts 2:46 NIV

“Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.  Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.” Romans 12:10-13

“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.” James 1:19 NIV

Photo of two women standing back to back and some scripture references that partially describe introvert and extrovert personality.
Bible verses describing some aspects of introvert and extrovert personality

How God uses introvert and extrovert personality

With all the pitfalls of each personality type, I sometimes wonder how God can use any of us.

In the beginning, our world and our humanness were perfect.

When God created man and woman in His own image, I believe that they were perfect ambiverts, that is, balanced in all of their personality traits.

When sin entered our world, everything changed. Gone was the ability to connect with each other in Godly ways. Unhealthy competition was evidenced in the first generation of children.

The Apostle Paul describes this conflict that happens in all of us.

” … Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law;  but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.  What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Romans 7:21-24 NIV

After asking this question, Paul answers it:

“Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!” Romans 7:25 NIV

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV

God can make you into an extroverted introvert or an introverted extrovert. Does that sound confusing?

If you are an introvert, you can act extroverted when you need to.

Likewise, if you are an extrovert, you can be toned down and more of an introvert when you need to be.

We are told by Scripture that God gives us everything we need to live a Godly life. (2 Peter 1:3). Sometimes that means speaking up when we don’t want to or keeping our mouth shut when everything inside is screaming to set the record straight.

What you are lacking God makes up for. When we live in a close relationship with God our Heavenly Father, His spirit lives in us and changes us.

That transformation is called the Fruit of The Spirit or being conformed to the image of Christ. It is something that becomes more evident in all our relationships as time goes on.

Here are a few examples of how life in Jesus transforms us into the person God wants us to be, even when it is not our natural tendency.

Fruit Of The Spirit

  1. Love
  2. Joy
  3. Peace
  4. Patience
  5. Kindness
  6. Goodness
  7. Faithfulness
  8. Gentleness
  9. Self-control

The Introvert

  1. Compassionate but can speak the truth in love
  2. Shares the joy of Jesus with others
  3. Can have peace even in crowds
  4. Patience with those who need activity
  5. Kind gestures and service to those who irritate them
  6. Does the right thing even if they need to do it publically
  7. Supports those who need it publically
  8. Remembers loud people still need gentleness too
  9. Will come out of their solitude to help others

The Extrovert

  1. Softer in speaking truth- has more compassion
  2. Finds Joy in Jesus, first, then other people
  3. Can have peace even in solitude
  4. Patience with those who need solitude
  5. Acts of generosity and hospitality even to individuals
  6. Does the right thing even if no one knows about it
  7. Keeps their word when making promises
  8. Tones down their actions to accommodate shy people
  9. Will give up a party to sit with someone who is sick

It is important to understand that the people God uses are those who have a relationship with Jesus Christ, whether you have an introvert or extrovert personality. That is where it all begins.

If you don’t know Jesus, you probably have questions. The people at Chat About Jesus have answers. They can be contacted any time of the day or night and on weekends.

You can “chat” with them online from anywhere in the world if you have an internet connection.

If you live in the United States, they are available also by phone call or text.

You might also like to read:

References: 

  1. Free unofficial MBTI test
  2. Official MBTI test with guided interpretation
  3. Choosing Therapy
  4. Forbes 

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