PewDiePie Is An Introvert


Susan Cain would not have thought of using PewDiePie as a case in point. But I will. Because how can one have more than 54 million fans on Youtube, and yet be an Introvert? Hopefully, this study will be relevant somehow.


PewDiePie owns the number one channel on Youtube with (currently) 54,183,246 subscribers. That alone is impressive. He is known for his playthrough gaming videos. Though, he now uploads vlogs, comedies, and other plenty of other stuff daily. He has the highest record of subscribers of any Youtuber of all time.

In most of his current videos, he’s facing the cam alone fearlessly. Playing games, talking, screaming, and joking. And yes, millions of people appreciate this stuff… Every day, he basically makes new video content that is watched by 5 or 6 million people around the world. Entertaining his audience proudly and valiantly.

The Quiet And The Clamorous

So, it would be interesting to know if our Youtube genius is actually an I or an E based on the MBTI. And we are not talking about “introversion” as the equivalent of being shy. But as the theory introduced by Carl Jung a few years ago.

Introverts tend to recharge by spending time alone. They lose energy from being around people for long periods of time, particularly in large crowds.
Extroverts, on the other hand, gain energy from other people. Extroverts actually find their energy is sapped when they spend too much time alone. They recharge by being social.

(You can check this test to know your own preference.)

Naturally, one might easily describe PewDiePie as the perfect entertainer, the “man of action” as described in Quiet.

ebullient, expansive, sociable, gregarious, excitable, dominant, assertive, risk-taking, thick-skinned, outer-directed, lighthearted, bold, and comfortable in the spotlight

Sounds right. But despite the evidence, some other clues show that he is likely to be an Introvert.

  • In his older videos (he’s been around for 7 years), he is pretty soft-spoken. Today, he also acknowledges that fundamentally he is still reserved inside.
  • When he is home, he looks way more calm and gentle.
  • When he appears on other shows than his own, he looks more modest and discreet.
  • What is the point of all of this you might say? Our modern society has developed the idea that successful people need to be extroverts. Relentlessly outgoing, fun, assertive. In schools, students have to socialize and party if they want to be at the top of the social hierarchy. And it only gets worse. Team-working and presentation skills, even exuberance and overconfidence are assets in business.

    Socializing is a greater challenge for introverts, who are not naturally comfortable with excessive human contact.

    So, Is Personality Flexible?

    Introverts’ assets are sadly undervalued. Introverts are creative people, reflective, cerebral, and sensitive. It does not imply though that introverts will always do poorly with leadership, public speaking, or entertainment. Actually, a lot of successful leaders are introverts, think of Bill Gates or Gandhi.

    Professor Brian Little developed the “Free Trait Theory”. He believes that even if we are born with certain personality traits like introversion, we sometimes act “out of character” for the sake of work we consider important.

    Everybody has fixed traits, but also free traits that can be invested in other personality traits.

    It explains how is it possible for introverts like PewDiePie to entertain their audience with such passion every day. To me, that is a great source of inspiration.

    The bottom line is the truth about faking extroversion (or introversion). It is exhausting, probably a bit ambiguous and unauthentic, but it is possible. As an introvert, never underestimate your social potential. If you are doing what you love, you can be everything.

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