When it comes to building energy, deciding if we are introverts or extroverts is helpful. It helps understand why we like and do not like what we do. If we are one type but forced to operate in the other mode, we likely will find ourselves frustrated, feeling drained. It can happen as society or parenting sometimes pushes us against our nature. Understanding what that nature is helps us avoid that happening.
I am no psychologist; so what follows is my opinion based on personal experience which I thought would start with simple definitions. Unfortunately the simple definitions in the dictionary didn't seem correct to me. So I came up with my own. If you don't like them, you can head to the dictionary for theirs.
Introverts get their energy from themselves. Introverts are oriented inwardly. Extroverts get their energy from connections to other people. Extroverts are oriented outwardly. This is not to say that either cannot operate in another realm for awhile but I am talking about what is inherent.
It might sound like one is superior to another, but my opinion is it isn't. The main thing is knowing where you get your energy and operating enough in that venue to stay strong.
In the United States, the extrovert is most highly praised, ends up heading more companies, and is where most people think everyone should be. Extroverts are also most common.
I think more artists and writers tend to be introverts by nature of the enjoyment of working with ideas from which art originates. It takes time to generate your own ideas or your own art. Not to say all artists or crafts people are introverts but it helps in doing original work.
Extroverts enjoy social settings. Introverts feel drained by them.
Basically this doesn't mean extroverts have superior people skills or that introverts have inferior ones. That's something totally different. Even though it's often thought it relates to shyness, I don't think it does. Shyness comes out of insecurity, is mostly taught, and could inflict either introverts or extroverts. I use the word inflict because I think shyness is an indication of damage where one has been taught to fear others or feel insecure about self.
Shyness might hinder the extrovert the most as it would limit their ability to move within their natural realm; but it wouldn't be great for the introvert either as they might become more reclusive than is healthy based on fear not as a natural reaction to where they refuel their energy.
When I thought about people I know, I quickly realized we cannot judge whether someone else is an extrovert or introvert. They might be an introvert necessarily operating in a more public realm for a period of time or an extrovert who has a special purpose for a time. The searching for a mate could encourage a natural introvert to move more in groups (leading the partner after the relationship is established to wonder what happened.)
If someone isn't sure if they are by nature introvert or extrovert, there are some personality tests, some even online, that can help decide like this simple one-- [Personality Test Based on Jung].
The thing that I think important about knowing is when you understand where you draw your energy, you won't feel apologetic for it and you can best utilize it. When you understand it's more about where you get energy than it is how you interact with others, you can make sure to allow yourself time in the arenas that best serve you.
Also, it isn't about liking or disliking people as individuals. Introverts don't have to be people haters more often than extroverts who might milk crowds for their power all the time not respecting any of the individuals within the crowd.
I am by the way, an introvert which probably if you have been reading my blog for awhile, you already might have guessed. I feel I have good people skills, empathy with others, am not shy, enjoy time with friends, but I never purpose to spend a lot of time in large groups because I know that for me it's draining. For a short time, it's fine; but after it I will need to have that alone time again to recharge my batteries.
Photo above is from Finley Wildlife Refuge. These sandpipers soared across the pond in one big cloud, changing shapes and direction but always working as what seemed a joyful whole. Being an introvert for them would likely be out of the question. Their energy is their flock.
On the other hand, predatory birds like eagles tend to operate more by themselves or with their mate. Although we did see one that same day, it was immature and at a distance. This photo is from the Yellowstone River in Montana in 2008. I wanta go back!!! Soon!!!