How to be a happy introvert
If you are an introvert, force yourself to be an extravert. You'll be happier.
That's the suggestion of the first-ever study asking people to act like extraverts for a prolonged period. For one week, the 123 participants were asked to push the boundaries of their willingness to engage, by acting as extraverts. For another week, the same group was asked to act like introverts.
The benefits of extraversion have been reported before, including those of "forced extraversion," but usually only for brief intervals. In one study, train-riders were asked to talk to strangers; a control group was directed to remain silent. The talkers reported a more positive experience.
University of California researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky wanted to extend the faux extraversion to see if it would result in better well-being.
"The findings suggest that changing one's social behaviour is a realisable goal for many people, and that behaving in an extraverted way improves well-being," said Ms Lyubomirsky.
Do you think extraverts have more fun than introverts? Are you an extravert or an introvert?