EDMONTON – You may have assumed introverts had an advantage over extroverts in surviving isolation during the pandemic because they prefer to be alone.
But a Ph.D. student in the department of psychology at the University of Alberta has found isolation has been harder on introverts.
Anahita Shokrkon surveyed 1,000 Canadians and corroborated her results with other studies around the globe.
It found extroverts find a way to connect even when conditions make it difficult to do so, whereas introverts are less adept at maintaining their fewer social connections.
“Extroverts have better mental health in general,” she said.
“They are happier, and they usually have more friends and better quality relationships. They can lean on the support of those friends to keep their positive mental health.”
She adds extroverts typically are better at adjusting to life-changing events, and they use adaptive strategies, such as problem solving and acceptance.
However, Shokrkon stresses no one is a pure introvert or extrovert–most fall somewhere in the middle.
Shokrkon plans to do a follow-up to the study this fall to see whether the mental health of participants in the first phase has improved as COVID restrictions have been lifted.