Researchers asked people to act like extroverts and what they found is that faking extroversion makes introverts happier…

You’ve probably heard that introverts are happiest when left alone. However, new research has found that, when introverts force themselves to act like extroverts, they are happier.

For one week, the 123 participants were asked to act like extroverts and, for another week, act like introverts.

The benefits of extroversion have been reported before, including those of “forced extroversion”, but usually only for brief intervals.

UC Riverside researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky wanted to extend the faux extroversion to see if it would result in better wellbeing.

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Extroversion improves wellbeing

Researchers next told participants – both the Act Introvert group and the Act Extrovert group – that previous research found each set of behaviours are beneficial for college students.

The participants were told to be as talkative, assertive, and spontaneous as they could stand. Later, the same group was told to be deliberate, quiet, and reserved, or vice versa. Three times a week, participants were reminded of the behavioural change via emails.

According to all measures of wellbeing, participants reported greater wellbeing after the extroversion week and decreases in wellbeing after the introversion week.

“The findings suggest that changing one’s social behaviour is a realisable goal for many people and that behaving in an extroverted way improves wellbeing,” said Lyubomirsky, a UCR psychologist and co-author of the study.

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Source: University of California – Riverside via