You may have a big imagination, but the function of your brain that finds ‘fun’ in storylines is the same as the extroverts who find ‘fun’ in experiences. Neither is left in solitude with the introverted function of self-analysis and introspection (introvert thought function). Simply put, you can have an extroverted mind while still functioning as an introvert.
However, there are those rare true unwavering personality types who possess almost all dominant extrovert functions and no introverted functions regardless of the situation. Even presenting an assignment would involve yapping away with others. Or for instance, the predominantly introverted functions who find no sense of fun in celebrating birthdays or anything even with their closest loved ones, and would rather read a book instead.
The Freedom Of Being An Ambivert
From my understanding, Jung would say that we all have “preferences” of what we would like to do, but we also have the capacity to be able to be both introverted and extroverted. And as we get older, we slowly migrate towards the center of the continuum scale in most of our functions, as part of the self-actualization process. The majority of people, although slanted towards one side of the scale, operate using traits and preferences from both sides.
Ambiverts are people who don’t really prefer one way of functioning over another. In other words, you could say they’re the neutral, middle-ground hippies. They’re equally comfortable in situations where the introvert feels most at home and situations where the extrovert is having a good time.
That being said, I would consider myself an Ambivert. I don’t feel drained from social interaction or going out shopping, and discussion energizes and invigorates me. I constantly seek daredevil, risk-taking stimulation, while simultaneously relishing quiet time with my books and catching up on scientific essays. I’m both overly confident, but also reclusive and critical in thought.
The freedom with Ambiversion comes in finding both Introverted and Extroverted worlds satisfying and rewarding. Ambiversion helps you to enjoy a varied life. Ambiverts have enough introversion to slowly absorb the world around them and enough extroversion to be able to propound ideas and express themselves (through writing or verbally) without feeling depleted.
The notion of Ambiversion changed my life. Previously, when filling in a personality type questionnaire, I”d hesitate when answering questions like: “would you prefer to go to a party or read a book?” My first thought was “Depends on the party or book and also how tired I am from the previous night.” But that contextual option wasn’t available. Now I realize what a gift it is to be sensible, reasonable, and well balanced enough to have the freedom of choice.
I don’t consider myself either extroverted or introverted. Even though I may be 49% extrovert and 51% introvert, I’m equally labeled an INTJ. Yet other’s with 99% introvert and 1% extrovert are still labeled INTJ’s. Superficially we have the same label, but psychologically we are entirely different. This is why I much prefer the Big 5 Personality Traits and their more balanced way of analyzing our personalities.
I’m an Ambivert with 70 shades of Introvert and 30 shades of Extrovert! What are you?
Originally appeared in LonerWolf