So I’ve been getting a lot of people asking me if I would consider myself introverted or extroverted. A lot of times I’m told that it’s confusing because one day I’ll want to be around everyone and have all the fun I can and the next I just really want to be by myself with a book and maybe some tunes.
Let’s break this down to each component and we’ll continue from there.
First of all, introversion vs extroversion really has no direct causation for why people may be more shy or outspoken. There can be very shy extroverts and very excitable introverts. Everything groups down to three basic things: Exhaustion, charge, and processing.
Introverts tend to become more easily exhausted when put in highly social or externally demanding situations. This is because introverts are internal processors, they do best in their head (so to speak). They may love to party or talk to people, but they need to have time to themselves in order to fully function and recharge, because that time allows for insightful thinking and healthy coping so they can process their world and all that makes it.
On the flip side, extroverts can easily become exhausted or depressed when they are in antisocial or internally demanding situations. These are the people that require some form of external stimulus to recharge, and find it best to work on their processing externally. This can be through social interaction or things like theatre and dance (not to say introverts can’t be a part of that as well). Extroverts may love to sit out by themselves and read a good book or listen to some music every once and a while, but their motivation and recharge comes from being active outside of their heads.
Now, which one do I think I am?
I’ve been told by numerous professionals as well as online quizzes that I’m pretty much on the exact border of the two, an ambivert of sorts. Basically, an ambivert tends to be extroverted when in social positions and introverted when alone.
What it means for me:
I need both social interaction and alone time to recharge and process the word. If you think of my psyche as a battery, I can only charge about halfway at a time before the other half is pretty nil. When I’m with my friend group having fun, I feel refreshed and excited and ready to take on the day, but at the end of it all I’m mentally exhausted. It’s the same when I keep to myself. I can lounge about and pamper myself for the day, but at the end I feel like a caged tiger and itch to talk to my friends and go do something.
I have to balance myself. Thankfully, I have the best of both worlds with my best friend who goes to college with me. She pretty much in the same range as I am, so we can enjoy each other’s company while doing our own thing as well. We can be outgoing or chill in each others dorm rooms writing prompts if we wanted to. It’s like the perfect blend.
So, in short, the whole extroversion vs introversion is more of a spectrum than one or the other. Don’t think that being one or the other defines you are determines what you can and cannot do. Don’t label someone an introvert just because they don’t talk much in class or as an extrovert just because they were loud at a party one time. People are people, so treat them with respect and remember that not everyone processes or understands the world in the way you do.
I hope you all have a wonderful week.