It’s Research Wednesday! Where I share the latest, or most fascinating, in the science of friendship.
“The overall incidence of shyness and introversion is…40 percent of the population for shyness, according to the psychology professor Jonathan Cheek, and 50 percent for introversion.” (NY Times, “Shyness: Evolutionary Tactic” by Susan Cain 6/26/2011)
I am not an introvert. And yet I’ve found that introverts often enjoy this blog because their very nature is keep to themselves, thus making it tough to find friends.
So I was especially excited to read this piece on how shyness and introversion differ. “Shy people fear negative judgment; introverts simply prefer quiet, minimally stimulating environments,” author Susan Cain writes. Given this definition, I would imagine that a friend search is much harder for a shy gal than it is for an introvert. The fear of negative judgments can be pretty substantial, after all.
According to this article, there are plenty advantages to being an introvert. However, public perception is not of them. “Studies show that we rank fast and frequent talkers as more competent, likable and even smarter than slow ones. “
So my question on this unusually short Research Wednesday: Have you introverts ever felt your friend-search struggling simply because you weren’t stimulated by loud, people-filled environments? Do you feel you “lose out” to the fast and frequent talkers? And do any of you self-identify as shy rather than introverted? How has that affected your friending?