Do you ever feel either wildly outgoing at times or utterly quiet and wanting to keep to yourself? You’re not necessarily an introvert because you love social interaction, but you’re also not an extrovert because you don’t love attention and have a waning social battery. If you check any of these boxes, you might be an ambivert, like me!
Here are a few of the telling signs that made me realize that I’m not an introvert, not an extrovert, but an ambivert.
- I love social settings, but also value being alone just as much.
I have a pretty large friend group in my hometown of Reading, Massachusetts. Sometimes, I love to speak up and tell a story at hangouts, but other times I’ll sit alone and observe my friends while they make conversation. I’m always more than happy to be there and see my friends, but that doesn't mean I want to be completely extroverted and social the entire time. Occasionally, people will ask me if I’m okay, and I totally am! I just like to observe rather than mingle when my social battery is running low.
- I sometimes have a short-fused social battery.
When I’m done being social, I’m done. However, like I stated above, that doesn't mean I don't want to be in a social setting. It just means that I may not spark up a conversation, or I might just leave a little early to recharge for the next day. If you’re like this too, have no shame. It is completely normal to feel socially drained after being with a group of friends, even if they’re your best friends, after a long time.
- I’m a great conversationalist.
As an ambivert, I’m a great listener and conversor. An extrovert may interrupt or talk too much and an introvert may avoid conversations or strictly listen. Instead, I always listen intently and know exactly when to speak to make the other person feel equally comfortable. This makes me pretty great at giving advice too since I'm actively listening and ready to share my opinions. If you ever need someone to talk to, you can put your trust in me!
- I don’t relate to the definitions of an introvert or an extrovert.
This one may seem obvious, but I find the definitions of introvert and extrovert to be too extreme, and I usually find myself to be somewhere in the middle. I’m only super outgoing with the right people, but I’m also not that shy when it comes to meeting new people. Thus, I find myself checking off almost every box as a person who is coasting in between. I've taken every Buzzfeed quiz that promises to reveal my “true” personality, so I must be right.
- I’m comfortable in most environments.
You can pretty much take me anywhere and I’ll have a good time. While I may not be the most outgoing person in the crowd, I'll still find my place and enjoy the experience. I usually find satisfaction going out of my comfort zone, though it's been hard to achieve this during the pandemic. Occasionally, I will choose to stay home, but that doesn't mean I’m not equally as comfortable with going out. I just simply may not want to.
- I may not start a conversation with a stranger, but I won't turn one down either.
While I probably won’t randomly walk up to you unless I want to introduce myself, I'd never turn down saying “hi” and meeting someone new. I’m a little nervous when it comes to introducing myself to new people, so I tend to like it better when other people make the first move. However, I am more than happy to meet as many new people as possible. They just might need to come up to me.
- I love meeting new people, as long as I’m not alone to do it.
I probably won’t attend a large party or social event alone where I don’t know anyone, though I give major props to those who would. I usually make an effort to stick with at least one friend during a party (pre-COVID-19). I feel like an extrovert would attend a social event alone, while an introvert may not want to go at all. I’m always down to go...with the confirmation that I know at least one other person.
If you’re anything like me, you appreciate a night in and look forward to a night out. Don’t be ashamed to be somewhere in the middle: you get the best of both worlds! We are the best listeners, great at making friends, and can enjoy our own company too. If you relate, you’re an ambivert, and you’re amazing!