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  • The Extrovert-Introvert Divide
    What if you found out that being an introvert isn’t the polar opposite of being an extrovert and that there’s such a thing as being a little bit of both? If personality tests get you excited, keep reading to determine just what type of personality you have and to better understand others’ personalities. Read >>
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Health and Fitness News

The Extrovert-Introvert Divide

It may not fall where you think.

For most people, the difference between extroverts and introverts is obvious. One, the extrovert, likes to party and be the center of attention. The introvert, on the other hand, feels more comfortable hiding out with a book at home or watching the party from a distance.

But what if this picture is oversimplified? What if you found out that being an introvert isn’t the polar opposite of being an extrovert and that there’s such a thing as being a little bit of both?

If personality tests get you excited, keep reading to determine just what type of personality you have and to better understand others’ personalities.

Inside Extroverts

Traditionally, extroverts are considered the life of the party. They seldom meet a stranger, are always looking for ways to get together with others in a group setting, and seem to never need time alone. For the most part, these are textbook pictures of extroverts. However, there are other traits you may not immediately associate with being an extrovert.

In most situations, extroverts are flexible, willing to take risks, and optimistic. Not surprisingly, most extroverts enjoy talking to others. Whereas some people prefer to process things by thinking, extroverts process by talking. This can be frustrating for those who think a lot about what they want to say before saying it, but it’s how extroverts figure things out.

Before slapping the extrovert title only on the class clowns, there’s something you should know. Some extroverts are actually shy. These extroverts love being in groups and long to participate in the conversation, but anxiety and fear prevents them from speaking up. Despite the fact that they don’t speak up, simply being around people and enjoying their company gives shy extroverts energy.

Inner World of Introverts

The main way to tell if you’re an introvert is how you feel after prolonged socialization. True introverts can enjoy time with others, but it is exhausting. As a result, introverts need some time alone after hanging out with large groups of people. This doesn’t mean they don’t like people. It just means that being around people doesn’t energize them. It actually zaps their energy levels.

That said, introverts typically have deep, meaningful relationships with a few people. When with that close-knit group of friends, introverts are most at home. They can relax, have fun, and have long, thoughtful conversations about things that matter most to them. When not with those closest friends, introverts enjoy being alone. They don’t mind spending time inside their own heads and are very self-aware and introspective.

Because introverts make up approximately 25 percent of the population, the majority (extroverts) often feel that introverts have something wrong with them. It’s also common for extroverts to think introverts don’t like them. In most cases, both ideas are wrong.

A Crazy Mix of Both

Not sure if you’re an extrovert or introvert? Feel yourself being tugged in both directions at different times? Then you may be an ambivert.

Also known as social introverts, outgoing introverts, or antisocial extroverts, ambiverts are people who experience life as both an extrovert and introvert. Whereas true extroverts always get energized by being around people, ambiverts only do sometimes. At other times, being around people is completely exhausting.

Likewise, while a full-blown introvert would rather stay in on a Friday night, an ambivert is eager to hit the town. It just has to be with the right people to the right event at the right time.

So which are you? Whatever camp you find yourself in, you don’t have to let it define you. Be who you are—not who a personality test says you are.