It’s a question I’ve been asked many times over the years – are introverts or extroverts more creative?
The answer: neither is more creative than the other!
The important thing is not who is more creative, but instead how to best channel your creativity according to your personality. Rather than try to change your personality to be more creative, why not find ways to be more creative using your personality?
The main difference that separates an introvert from an extrovert is their source of energy.
Introverts have the most energy and ideas when they are alone. It’s really difficult for them to think out loud and verbalize their ideas on the spot, so when it comes to meetings or group brainstorming, it seems like they have nothing to say. In fact, all introverts need is some alone time to ponder and reflect before they share something valuable.
Extroverts, on the other hand, think out loud. They think as they speak and are very fast on their feet. Extroverts like to bounce ideas off other people, so meetings are great for them because they get their ideas from being with other people. They need to discuss their ideas with others to think creatively.
The fact is you need to be a little of both personalities to be your best creative self!
People deemed to be ‘highly creative’ can be both introverted and extroverted, but at different times. They need and use the companionship of other people to build better ideas, but they also use solitude to let ideas incubate. Then they use triggering activities like reading, exercising, watching a movie or walking the dog to force the combination of their incubated ideas.
In North America, society is currently made up of 70-75% extroverts and 25-30% introverts. So although introverts may be feeling a little outnumbered, the most important thing to remember is that neither group gets the award for being more creative than the other!
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