If the idea of being around other people--perfectly nice people, even people you love--drains your energy, leaving you feeling you'd rather go get a tooth pulled, you might be an introvert.
If the idea of being alone seems scary, you crave being around groups of people, and your nickname is "Gabby Gabsalot," you're probably an extrovert. (Or maybe you just had too much caffeine that day...)
But we know introverts and extroverts well, right? They're pretty easy to spot, thanks to the relative extremes of their behavior.
We all have our moments of introversion or extroversion, but most of us don't actually qualify as someone expressing one or the other, most of the time. There's another personality type we don't hear about nearly as often: the ambiverts.
More balanced, flexible, and emotionally stable, ambiverts also tend to be more successful and influential than their introvert or extrovert counterparts.
So how can you tell if you're an ambivert? Check out these 9 telltale signs:
- You're comfortable in different social situations. Having dinner alone isn't terrifying, but you don't mind the insanity of a packed room, either. You're pretty flexible, and appreciate both time alone and in crowds.
- You can hold your temper. As far as mood swings go, yours are pretty moderate, if anything. You're not at all comfortable loudly expressing yourself like an extrovert, but you're not apt to sit quietly and seethe with inner rage, either.
- Intuition serves the ambivert. You're intuition is on point and adapts to different situations. You know when to stand down and when to speak up. You know when to respond and when to do nothing more than observe from the sidelines.
- You're sociable, yet quiet. Co-workers see the side of you that is quiet and reserved, as that's how you are in those situations. But friends see the real you, perfectly comfortable putting yourself out there if the situation calls for it.
- You can't be with others. You can't be alone. Finding balance can be hard at first, as spending time with others can leave you feeling drained and needing a recharge. Yet too much time alone fosters gloominess and loneliness. You like to balance the two.
- You're the Jack-of-all-trades and master of none. This is essentially the best way to understand your new diagnosis (you're welcome!). You adapt well in most situations because you fall in the middle.
- You think too much. For ambiverts, decision making is a chore. You might spend a lot of time self-reflecting and analyzing before taking your options to friends. You may further complicate matters by then having to analyze and consider every single piece of advice offered by friends and family.
- It's all about you. Everything is on your terms--if you're passionate about a particular topic, you can and will happily and excitedly talk about it for hours. But if you're forced to network and endure small talk about topics that have absolutely no interest to you, it quickly becomes awkward and tedious.
- Ambivert advantage. Many people believe extroverts are the best type of person for sales. But it's actually the ambivert. Adam Grant, an associate professor at the Wharton School, analyzed several studies and found that the people in the middle--not introverts, not extroverts, but ambiverts--are actually the best salespeople.