Loud: The Power of Extraverts! (we need to be understood too)

Bill McAneny's picture
Published on Wed, 08/07/2013 - 09:11 by Bill McAneny

TrumpetWhisper it quietly but there seems to be a groundswell of support for, and understanding of, introverts. And rightly so! As Susan Cain points out in her book: “Quiet: the power of introverts” it is difficult to be quiet in a noisy world and self-projection is often seen as the norm. So yeah more power to the introverts.

However what if this goes full circle, what will happen to us extraverts? Our maxim tends to be ‘Dico ergo sum,’ ‘I speak therefore I am,” and so will we be expected to let our energy drain away in pale silence? Who will break the ice at parties and social gatherings, who will state the obvious? We extraverts NEED to speak, it is how we process our thoughts and silence kind of scares us. Social chitchat is the glue that holds the fabric of society together and we are often expected to ensure the atomisation of the introvert world is brought into the collective world.

Sure people get annoyed because we talk so much, and we can even drain the energies of an introvert so they just have to withdraw and recharge. However if we stop verbalising our thoughts it is like our power supply being switched off and we become, not introverts but the mere husks of extraverts: no energy, no thought process, no point.

So please spare a thought for the extravert who, as Jung (who coined the terms ‘extraversion’ and ‘introversion,’ and who remember was an introvert) said:

Extraversion is characterized by interest in the external object, responsiveness, and a ready acceptance of external happenings, a desire to influence and be influenced by events, a need to join in…

And he was clear there is hope for us:

Provided he is not too much of a busy-body, too pushing, and too superficial, he can be a distinctly useful member of the community.

You see, even the great man agreed there is a purpose to us extraverts, even if just in small measures!

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