How Getting Sober Is Different for Introverts and Extroverts

Anyone can develop an addiction. This is an important thing to remember when participating in drug addiction treatment, and it’s equally critical to remember that no experience, ambition, social standing, religion or amount of money can prevent someone from experiencing an addiction. No one is exempt. And just how everyone on this planet is different, so will their experiences with their substance abuse addictions be.

Introverts and Extroverts

You have likely heard of someone being an introvert or extrovert. Carl Jung originally coined these terms during a study of psychological theories, where he stated the differences between these psychological personality types as documented on Fractal Enlightenment. These personality types are based off of various and stereotyped behaviors that are more or less common in certain individuals.

The stereotypical introvert usually displays shy or socially-withheld behaviors, while the stereotypical extrovert tends to enjoy attention and interacting in social and public settings.

Social scientists have conducted great amounts of research on personality behaviors to build onto Jung’s theories, and to this day, psychologists and sociologists sire new theories stating the similarities and differences between introvert and extrovert behaviors.

Sober Living for Extroverts

Those with extroverted personality traits tend to gravitate toward popular social settings and generally feel rejuvenated around familiar or unfamiliar individuals. This would typically mean that extroverts would struggle in situations where social drinking or substance use is involved, as they may have trouble resisting substance abuse and maintaining a sober living.

It also may mean that extroverts could possibly have a harder time giving up a life of partying or spending large quantities of time going out with friends if traveling to a drug rehab is involved.

However, extroverts would thrive in group therapy sessions within a drug rehab facility, as they would likely share tips and opinions on their own recovery experiences. They may even reach out to more introverted group members and help them feel more comfortable in group settings.

Individuals who display more extroverted behaviors would likely see any kind of structured or unstructured social time as something to look forward to, and may even see more positive results in their recovery processes because of that.

Sober Living for Introverts

On the other side of the spectrum, introverts would have very different experiences in a transitional living program. Multiple sources have stated that introverts have a harder time coping and interacting in recovery programs, as many treatments push social interaction and limit alone time. Introverts thrive in situations where they can be alone or develop close relations with just a handful of people. These are difficult behaviors to maintain in treatment centers, and if introverts are forced to neglect these behaviors, they will often become escalated, anxious or stressed.

Introverts would thrive in more intimate recovery programs, where they can have monitored time alone while creating close friendships with others in the program without feeling pressured to interact with others.

So if you or someone you know struggles with an addiction and displays extroverted or introverted behaviors, try looking for a recovery program that will best fit his or her individual needs, as an individual can successfully heal when he feels that his social needs are being fulfilled.

Natalie New is a health writer for Fusion 360, an SEO and content marketing agency. Information provided by Next Level Recovery. Follow on Twitter.