Some people might not care about what type of personality did they have, but some are curious.
According to Myers Briggs, perhaps the most widely popular and accepted personality test, extroverts are action oriented, seek breadth of knowledge and influence, prefer frequent interaction, and get energy from spending time with people while introverts are thought oriented, seek depth of knowledge and influence, prefer more substantial interaction, and get their energy from spending time alone.Introversion and extroversion are commonly misunderstood. Just because someone is shy, doesn’t mean she’s an introvert. Someone who is bubbly, gregarious and the life of the party can, in reality, be an introvert. So who are you?
The personality traits of extroversion and introversion fall on a spectrum, and most of experts’ focus has been on the two ends. Now, social psychologists, behavioral scientists and business experts are taking a closer look at the overlooked category smack in the middle—ambiversion—and deciding that people with this trait may have some personal and professional advantages for being adaptable.
Experts believe that the personality traits on the introvert-extrovert spectrum remain stable throughout life—they appear as early as infanthood and are difficult to change. On one end are extroverts (sometimes spelled “extravert” in psychology circles) who become energized externally. They love to have lots of people around them and to be the center of attention. They enjoy brainstorming with others and often form their thoughts as they speak. When by themselves, they easily become bored or restless.
Introverts, on the other end of the spectrum, become energized internally. They prefer to spend time alone, with one other person or with a small group. They feel drained by a lot of social interaction or a crowd. They gather their thoughts carefully before they speak.
What is an introvert?
Introverts are concerned with their own thoughts and feelings. They are quieter than extroverts and prefer to be removed from the social world. As such they are happy being alone. Introverts do socialize but it will be with a few close friends rather than large groups of people. They will probably feel lonelier in a crowd than on their own. Introverts prefer to plan and analyze things and are careful in their decision making.
What are the strengths of an introvert?
Introverts are capable of introspection and self-knowledge. They value their own standards and principles and as such are independent minded. Other people are not needed for their entertainment or stimulation. Introverts are interested in what is going on underneath rather than being concerned with trivial matters. An introvert will be imaginative and intuitive.
Assumptions made about introverts
There is often a tendency to see introversion as a problem that needs to be corrected. This is not the case. Introversion is not about being shy, depressed or lacking confidence. It is not about having bad social skills either. They just do not need the external world as much as an extrovert for their happiness. Introverts are happy as they are and do not need to be taken out of themselves. Introverts may not give much away about themselves. It is therefore important to not make assumptions about what is going on for them or what they really want.
What is an extrovert?
Extroverts are interested in the external world. Their focus is on people and objects. They enjoy being with others and like group activities. As such, they like to be noticed. Extroverts find it difficult being alone and feel lonely if they are not with other people. Possessions and success are valued by an extrovert.
It is estimated that extroverts outrank introverts 3 to 1.
Research carried out by Twenge (2001) found that extroversion appeared to have become more prevalent in the US over the years. This may not mean that there are more extroverts out there – rather it could be that extroversion has become a more acceptable personality trait than it was decades ago.
What are the strengths of an extrovert?
Extroverts like to focus on concrete reality and as such are practical and have common sense. They make decisions easily and quickly take action. Extroverts are sociable, enthusiastic and eager to try new things. They can live in the present, without worrying about the future. Their desire for success means they relish achievements.
What is ambivert?
Since introverts and extroverts are the extremes of the scale, the rest of us fall somewhere in the middle. Many of us lean one way or the other, but there are some who are quite balanced between the two tendencies. These people are called ambiverts. Ambiverts exhibit both extrovert and introvert tendencies. This means that they generally enjoy being around people, but after a long time this will start to drain them. Similarly, they enjoy solitude and quiet, but not for too long. Ambiverts recharge their energy levels with a mixture of social interaction and alone time.
What are the strengths of an ambivert?
If you’re an ambivert, be mindful of it, says Dr. Helgoe. “If you are aware that you can go both ways, then you can look at a situation and see what behaviors are going to be most effective and rewarding.”
Think of “introvert” and “extrovert” as verbs, says Beth Buelow, a speaker and coach who is founder of The Introvert Entrepreneur, a website for introverts. “You can choose to introvert (turn inward) or extrovert (project outward) depending on what’s called for.” Because ambiverts do well socially and individually, it’s easy for an ambivert to become the jack of all trades, having knowledge in many different areas but not necessarily an expert an any of them.Ambiverts tend to do well adapting to any situation that they are placed in, whether it be a loud social scene or a secluded environment.
However, no matter if you identify as an extrovert, introvert, or ambivert, don’t let a personality test define how you think about yourself. Figuring out how you work best for yourself is much more helpful than any test.
What do you think? Where would you put yourself on the spectrum?