TODAY

TODAY   |  August 29, 2013

Are you an introvert? Here’s how to tell

Researchers estimate that introverts make up about 30 percent of the population,so are you one?Carolyn Gregoire of the Huffington Post and Dr. Charles Sophy explain ways to tell, and dispel common misconceptions about introverts.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> it may come as a surprise, but some of the world's most famous celebrities are famously shy. box office star johnny depp has described himself as shy and paranoid. twilight star kristen stewart , she says she's uncomfortable during interviews.

>> and two surprising celebrities on the shy list. the always outrageous lady gaga and the queen of reality tv who seems to bask in the spotlight, kim kardashian .

>> really?

>> do you consider yourself shy or even introverted? how can you break out of your shell? huffington post associate lifestyle editor wrote about the 23 signs you're secretly an introvert . psychiatrist charles sophie is the medical director for the los angeles county department of children and family services . good morning to both of you.

>> good morning.

>> what is the difference between being shy and an introvert .

>> they're completely different things, actually. one of the biggest misconceptions about introverts is that they're shy. being shy is sort of being uncomfortable in social situations. being introverted is just needing time alone to rest and recharge your batteries.

>> shy is also a biochemical brain reaction to fear, anxiety, those kinds of things. it's much more medically rooted.

>> also, when i took the little test that you did, i checked out 18 out of the 23. i'm an introvert . it's true. things like you find small talk incredibly cumbersome. you often feel alone in a crowd . networking makes you feel like a phony. what are some of the other sort of signs of being an introvert ?

>> another sign is that you're in a relationship with an extrovert. a lot of introverts tend to maybe take themselves a little too seriously. it's nice to have an extrovert who encourages them to have fun and get out. another one is being called too intense or being called an old soul. because a lot of introverts are very observant. they're deep thinker. they tend to be seen as very wise.

>> they're not fear based. and they're not anxious. and they still live.

>> shy is more associated with anxiety?

>> yes. more of a biochemical issue or medical problem that needs more than just a description of a personality type .

>> i think people watching this will say how could brooke shields , who's been in the public eye for most of her life, be an introvert . how could lady gaga be an introvert . kim kardashian . chris tia aguilera, courtney cox . how does it work when you're famous and your whole job is, in effect, to have attention paid to you and be an introvert .

>> some introverts really thrive in the spotlight. 40% of ceos are introverts. great speakers, leaders, actors and actresses. after they've been in the spotlight they might need to rest and go home and have time alone. i think what's taxes for an introvert sometimes is constantly meeting people and being in very stimulating social environments where they have to do a lot of meet and greets and really excessive social interaction .

>> how do you tell or can you tell early on in a child that they're either shy or introverted?

>> you look at even in an adult, you look at things like their sleep. their ability to function during the day. are they fear based throughout other parts of their life? are they able to go to school, eat, all of the kind of medical types of things you would look at in mental health issues. but other than that, if they're not really doing those things but they just kind of, like, know when they need to disengage and be in quiet time , they're just probably introverts.

>> i like one of your signs, too. if you've been called an old soul since your 20s, you're probably an introvert .

>> exactly.

>> that goes back to being sort of an observant, maybe a lot of writers and academics are introverts. i think it comes from that type of thinking.

>> a self-charger. you know when to disengage and really replenish yourself.

>> should two introverts be together?

>> they'll probably bore each other.

>> i'm definitely married to an extrovert.

>> oh, i am, too.

>> you are. absolutely. i'm a bit of an introvert .

>> come out of your shell, al.

>> that's another sign. that's another sign.

>> that's a misconception. have you not been listening to anything she just said?

>> i'm trying! thanks so much.

>>> coming up next, all the news you need before you head out the door.