I have always referred to myself as being both “introverted and extroverted” because I can’t fully “identify” with either. Extroverts are described as being fueled by the presence of people and feel more alive when socializing. Introverts, however, feel drained from too much socializing and need to retreat inward to feel their best. That said nobody is ever fully on either side of the spectrum.
It wasn’t until recently when I was listening to the podcast Alchemy With Ambi and her episode “Introvert, Extrovert or Ambivert?” that I learned the term “Ambivert”. Ambivert is defined as “a person whose personality has a balance of extrovert and introvert features.” I was so surprised I had never heard anyone use this term before to describe how so many people feel.
One of the aspects of Ambiverts that I connect to significantly, is that sometimes I can be introverted or extroverted depending on the environment that I am in. When I feel comfortable in the space that I am in, I can be fully extroverted, very outgoing, and feel totally energized by those around me. When I enter an environment that I don't totally vibe with, my introverted side really comes out and I can become quite shy.
Another thing in Ambi’s episode that I really resonated with is that Ambiverts struggle with finding a balance between both sides of their personality. To give in an example, I do something in my life that I describe as “binge socializing.” When I am going through a binge period it can last for a couple days or even a week where my extroverted side is in full swing and I am saying yes to all things social! What tends to happen as a result of a “social binge”, is that I become completely burnt out and I don't want to see or talk to people for days or even weeks. The social exhaustion paired with the need to turn inward makes me feel lonely and directionless. I am working to find balance in the vicious cycle which is one of the challenges of being an ambivert.
Knowing that I am an Ambivert helps so much because I can define these different cycles and focus on how I feel in different environments. I find it so fascinating to see how this awareness can lead to a further extension and personification of the self. To learn more about ambiversion listen to Ambi’s podcast episode along with this article.
Photos by: Casey Fyfe
Sweater: People Of Leisure