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  • Writer's pictureKinjal Ramnani

Introversion vs. shyness—the confusion begins

Kinjal argues why introversion and shyness are two completely different things, as well as why we should abandon such titles.

As an introverted person myself, I have firsthand experienced others confusing introverted people with shy people. In society, shyness and introversion are often seen as the same. While the two classifications share similar notions, they are quite different. Shyness implies the terror of society's negative remarks, resulting in low self-confidence. Conversely, introversion is referring to the energy gained from oneself.

Introversion is a state of wellbeing in which one is content with their decisions, solving problems, or celebrating successes without any interference from other people.

However, shyness has a more negative connotation. It can refer to a person who is afraid to share their opinions, in the fear that their opinions may be rejected or judged. Introversion is usually not a negative trait. But, shyness is an issue that must be conquered since it refers to people that are uncomfortable in public situations. Introversion does not lead to a dread of social connection with others, but shyness can make one fear social interaction.

Introversion cannot—and should not—be handled or "solved," because in everyday existence, it is not a hindrance. Shyness has to be addressed since it suppresses a person's social qualifications and makes daily living difficult.

Society often does not find the distinction between introversion and shyness, even though they're two

different dimensions, regardless of small overlaps. It's frustrating to describe an introvert as

shy, but some people don't grasp it, regardless of how many differences exist.

A good solution would be to stop classifying people into social definitions, like extrovert, introvert, shy person, loud person, leader, follower, etc. Rather, we should acknowledge that everyone is nuanced, and has different sides to themselves. Since the distinction between introversion and shyness causes much debate, maybe such boundaries and definitions shouldn't be used when talking about someone.

Maybe, the actual meaning of such social definitions have changed and evolved overtime, and it's time to be more open-minded.


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