In Myers and Briggs' personality typology, the Extraversion/Introversion dichotomy describes how a person gets their energy.

Extraverted Types

Extraverts direct their energy to the outer world, towards people and things. They get their motivation from interactions with others, and their batteries drain quickly when they are alone. Extraverts typically have a large circle of acquaintances and are interested in what happens around them.

People with this preference tend to act first and reflect later. They like variety and achievement and they learn by doing. Career-wise, Extraverts work best in fast-paced, open-door workplaces where thinking out loud to solve problems is encouraged. Desk work and research-heavy positions may feel oppressive to them.

On a social level, Extraverts are open and accessible, and like to talk. They make new friends easily and quickly adapt to new groups. They say what they think and compare their views with those of others. Extraverts get a kick out of meeting new people and find it easy to break old contacts if they’re no longer getting any value from them.

Introverted Types

Introverts direct their energy inwards towards their inner, subjective world. They get their motivation from having time to themselves, and their batteries drain quickly when they are with other people even if they are enjoying the company. Introverts tend to have fewer friends and acquaintances, and find it harder to meet new people.

People with this preference tend to be deliberate, focused and questioning; thinking before they act. They learn by tuning into their own thoughts and feelings, and need their own territory to thrive. Career-wise, Introverts work best in environments where they are able to act autonomously and have control over their interactions with others. Fast-paced teamwork may feel draining to them.

On a social level, Introverts may not enjoy impromptu social activities and can easily be over-stimulated if they spend too much time focusing on other people. They think deeply about things and seek to understand issues before forming a judgment on them. Their attitude is reserved and inquiring and they need to bake in periods for quiet reflection throughout the day.

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About the Author

Molly Owens is the CEO of Truity and holds a master's degree in counseling psychology. She founded Truity in 2012, with the goal of making quality personality tests more affordable and accessible. She has led the development of assessments based on Myers and Briggs' personality types, Holland Codes, the Big Five, DISC, and the Enneagram. She is an ENTP, a tireless brainstormer, and a wildly messy chef. Find Molly on Twitter at @mollmown.