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Science Unlocks The Secret To Why Introverts Prefer Alone Time To Socializing

Science Unlocks The Secret To Why Introverts Prefer Alone Time To Socializing

The world is full of all kinds of people, but most of them can be put into one of two categories: extroverts and introverts. Some people are a little more half and half, but most are one or the other.

For years people have thought the causes of introversion or extroversion stemmed from personality types, but a new study has shown that one of the main causes of introversion is actually in the brain. Personality still has something to do with it, but maybe being an introvert or an extrovert is more hard-wired than we think it is!

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How the Study Worked

Since the hypothesis was that introversion and extroversion have more to do with the brain than personality, researchers had to look at the brain’s response to certain things. They studied a group of different people, varying in ages and recorded the electrical activity in their brains through an EEG. The study subjects were shown pictures of objects and people. The difference in the brain activity between the introverts and extroverts was interesting.

Reaction to Inanimate Objects is One of the Causes of Introversion

As the study found, extroverts are more stimulated by seeing people, whereas introverts paid more attention to inanimate objects. This finding was discovered by evaluating the brain’s P300 activity. This activity happens when you experience a sudden change in your environment, and the P300 activity happens within 300 milliseconds. Researchers found that when the group was shown pictures of flowers and faces, the extroverts achieved the P300 response from viewing the pictures of faces, while the introverts only achieved the P300 response from photos of flowers.

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These responses show that extroverts see people as more significant, while introverts give more emphasis to objects. This doesn’t meant introverts hate people; introverts can like socializing, but they certainly don’t place spending time with others on the same level as an extrovert would. In fact, according to this study’s findings, some introverts may even be indifferent to people.

What Does This Mean For You?

If you are an introvert, you probably don’t feel very understood by those around you. The extroverts in your life always push you to do things you really don’t want to do, like going out and socializing. They just don’t understand why you can’t be “on” all the time like they can. This study opens up a way for you to point out to them that it’s not just about a preference or a personality conflict; your brain is hard-wired to need alone time.

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If you talk to your friends one on one and explain your differences, they will most likely understand a little better why you don’t always want to go out or spend a lot of time with others. They won’t be able to completely understand you, just like you can’t completely understand how they can be around people so much and not explode. But they will at least understand why you are different from them. People find it hard to argue against science, and when a new discovery gives you more facts about the causes of introversion, you should definitely use it to your advantage!

What This Study is NOT Saying

This study does not prove that introverts don’t care about people, or that they never want to meet anyone. Introverts care deeply about their loved ones, and can enjoy social gatherings, even the small talk! With the right group of people, an introvert can even walk away from a social activity feeling energized, similar to an extrovert. However, in most cases, an introvert will need time alone for a while after being social, to recharge and feel at peace again.

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Last Updated on January 18, 2019

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

Some people will have a rain cloud hanging over them, no matter what the weather is outside. Their negative attitude is toxic to your own moods, and you probably feel like there is little you can do about it.

But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

If you want to effectively deal with negative people and be a champion of positivity, then your best route is to take definite action through some of the steps below.

1. Limit the time you spend with them.

First, let’s get this out of the way. You can be more positive than a cartoon sponge, but even your enthusiasm has a chance of being afflicted by the constant negativity of a friend.

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In fact, negativity has been proven to damage your health physically, making you vulnerable to high levels of stress and even cardiac disease. There’s no reason to get hurt because of someone else’s bad mood.

Though this may be a little tricky depending on your situation, working to spend slightly less time around negative people will keep your own spirits from slipping as well.

2. Speak up for yourself.

Don’t just absorb the comments that you are being bombarded with, especially if they are about you. It’s wise to be quick to listen and slow to speak, but being too quiet can give the person the impression that you are accepting what’s being said.

3. Don’t pretend that their behavior is “OK.”

This is an easy trap to fall into. Point out to the person that their constant negativity isn’t a good thing. We don’t want to do this because it’s far easier to let someone sit in their woes, and we’d rather just stay out of it.

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But if you want the best for this person, avoid giving the false impression that their negativity is normal.

4. Don’t make their problems your problems.

Though I consider empathy a gift, it can be a dangerous thing. When we hear the complaints of a friend or family member, we typically start to take on their burdens with them.

This is a bad habit to get into, especially if this is a person who is almost exclusively negative. These types of people are prone to embellishing and altering a story in order to gain sympathy.

Why else would they be sharing this with you?

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5. Change the subject.

When you suspect that a conversation is starting to take a turn for the negative, be a champion of positivity by changing the subject. Of course, you have to do this without ignoring what the other person said.

Acknowledge their comment, but move the conversation forward before the euphoric pleasure gained from complaining takes hold of either of you.

6. Talk about solutions, not problems.

Sometimes, changing the subject isn’t an option if you want to deal with negative people, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be positive.

I know that when someone begins dumping complaints on me, I have a hard time knowing exactly what to say. The key is to measure your responses as solution-based.

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You can do this by asking questions like, “Well, how could this be resolved?” or, “How do you think they feel about it?”

Use discernment to find an appropriate response that will help your friend manage their perspectives.

7. Leave them behind.

Sadly, there are times when we have to move on without these friends, especially if you have exhausted your best efforts toward building a positive relationship.

If this person is a family member, you can still have a functioning relationship with them, of course, but you may still have to limit the influence they have over your wellbeing.

That being said, what are some steps you’ve taken to deal with negative people? Let us know in the comments.

You may also want to read: How to Stop the Negative Spin of Thoughts, Emotions and Actions.

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