Everyone deals with grief in their own way. The way an extroverted, outgoing individual copes with loss is different than someone who is more reserved and introverted.
Extroverted people are more expressive with their emotions, while introverts keep their thoughts to themselves. Some people consider themselves ambiverts, meaning they identify with both introverts and extroverts in some way.
If people know their personality type, they will have more insight on how they can best handle the loss of a loved one. But no matter what personality type people fall into themselves, it’s also important to understand how others process grief.
Introverts often feel drained after social gatherings and need time by themselves to recharge. Going to a funeral, having people over at their house, and engaging in conversations may make introverts feel uneasy and tired. They need time alone to reflect inwardly on their thoughts and feelings.
It might take them longer to adjust and get back to the regular routines. Going out into the world and facing peoples’ questions doesn’t sound appealing to them. Introverts also are used to solving problems on their own, so they might not try to seek help from others.
Friends of introverts can help by just being there for them and listening if they want to talk. It’s important for introverts to accept that they’re introverted, and do what is best for them to cope.
Extroverts like to go out and hang out with their friends, but people may misjudge this as either ignoring grief or being fine, even when they are not. On the other hand, if extroverts take some time to themselves, people might be concerned since this is out of the norm for them. Extroverts should let their friends know what they need from them.
Even though extroverts like to talk about their emotions, some people — especially introverts — may not be comfortable with this. Joining a grief support group would offer friendship from people in the same situation, emotional support, and an opportunity to share stories and memories to help heal.
It’s important for extroverts to plan some alone time to help process grief as well, even if it’s not natural for them. They should not feel guilty for going out and spending time with others if it helps them heal. It’s alright to keep busy, but don’t let being busy turn into avoiding grief altogether.
As for ambiverts, combinations of both personality types may apply so they should use their best judgment to determine how they need to process their grief.
Regardless of personality type, everyone needs to take care of themselves mentally and physically when dealing with loss. It’s okay to do whatever you personally need to heal, even if it’s different than what those around you might do in your situation.
What is your personality type? Share your thoughts in the comments below!