Many say one cannot be successful as in introvert, but so many successful geniuses have proven that living in your shell gives you time to think and create great things.
Albert Einstein, who was thought to be an introvert said, “The monotony and solitude of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind.” There must be some truth to his words; the advancement in physics today is largely thanks to his scientific work, discoveries, and theories. But how true is it that personality types can affect the success of an individual? Einstein is not the only example of a famous introvert, Bill Gates, Steven Spielberg, Sir Isaac Newton, and Elon Musk are successful geniuses, despite being labeled as introverts.
As closely as Elon Musk resembles Iron Man, he has human merits and flaws like the rest of us. Being constantly in the spotlight and doing interviews and events has made it possible to get an insight into his personality, something that he believes could be more important than talent in hiring employees.
“My biggest mistake is probably weighing too much on someone’s talent and not someone’s personality. I think it matters whether someone has a good heart.”
Understanding Personality Types
Recognizing personality types helps understand people and according to Carl G. Jung’s theory of psychological types, they can be identified based on four criteria. The first criterion is where a person’s energy comes from and where it is expressed, extraversion and introversion, E or I. The second one is how a person perceives information, either Sensing or iNtuition. The third is how the process information, by Thinking or by Feeling and the fourth is how they implement that information, either a Judging type who is decisive and always sticks to their plans or Perceiving type that tends to improvise more. These four criteria give sixteen personality types. Let’s try and find out which type Elon Musk is.
Understanding Elon Musk: Intuitive (I)
“I would just question things… It would infuriate my parents… That I wouldn’t just believe them when they said something ’cause I’d ask them why. And then I’d consider whether that response made sense given everything else I knew.”
Early childhood makes up a big chunk of our personalities. Elon’s childhood wasn’t very stable; despite being born into a well-off family, mainly because his parents got divorced when he was nine. That didn’t stop him from showing early signs of genius and coding his first game at twelve years old and selling it for $500. In addition to his thirst for knowledge, he was an intuitive child that wondered about everything and refused to believe everything he was told.
“I’m interested in things that change the world or that affect the future and wondrous, new technology where you see it, and you’re like, ‘Wow, how did that even happen? How is that possible?'”
Understanding Elon Musk: Thinking (T)
“People should pursue what they’re passionate about. That will make them happier than pretty much anything else.”
Despite being passionate about everything he does, Elon Musk isn’t known for making emotional decisions. He is undoubtedly one of the most innovative masterminds of our time and has been known to do what’s best for his companies after careful analysis, regardless of how he, or other people involved, may feel about it or how unpopular it might make him. Some of his decisions may seem unfeeling, but they are logical.
Understanding Elon Musk: Judging (J) or Perceiving (P)
“There’s a tremendous bias against taking risks. Everyone is trying to optimize their ass-covering.”
It would be impossible to get to where Elon Musk is now without making a lot of strong, timely decisions and taking chances. Of course, it helps if you have overflowing confidence and blind belief that you’re going to succeed.
“It’s OK to have your eggs in one basket as long as you control what happens to that basket.”
Elon could go either way in this criterion; he has been known to make impulsive actions too. His confidence, mixed with some spontaneity, has led to many seemingly unwise reactions to some situations and a lot of tweets that haven’t all been received too well.
Understanding Elon Musk: Introvert (I)
That brings us to the first criteria of personality analysis; is he an introvert or an extravert? Elon Musk is definitely an introvert and a private person in general. Other than talking about his companies and plans to improve life on Earth and start one on Mars, we don’t usually hear Musk talking about much. He rarely discusses his personal life and despite being pressured into discussing his first divorce from his first wife Justine Musk, he kept his life private until pushed to clarify some misconceptions about the divorce.
So Elon could either be an INTJ or INTP, either way, there’s so much to be inspired by, like his creativity, persistence, confidence, big dreams, and determination to succeed. The one thing everyone can easily agree on is that Elon Musk is never boring.