Myers-Briggs: Who Are You?
Last year, I went to lunch and met several people who my boyfriend works with. "They all loved you!" He texted me. "One of them said you were clearly an extrovert." <insert laughter>
That makes sense that he would think that. I can be outgoing and chatty. My boyfriend and I both know that even though I sometimes come across as an extrovert, that is far from the truth. It is a common misconception that you must be an extrovert if you are confident and outgoing. For me, being an introvert or extrovert has nothing to do with your ability to be fun or contribute to a conversation. Do I have a good time engaging in social conversation with friends at lunch? Totally. Would I find joy in doing that every single day during lunch? Not a chance. For me, being an introvert means that I need a lot more down-time than my hella-extroverted boyfriend. I recharge by myself. Both of these are styles of life, neither one is good or bad, they just are.
Here is how I define extroverts and introverts:
Extrovert: Recharge with other people. These people find that they get into a little slump when they spend too much time alone. They use social interaction to raise their energy levels.
Introvert: Recharge alone. These people generally need time to relax and recharge. Introverts find that they can become overwhelmed and exhausted when they are constantly engaging and interacting with other people.
Not sure if you are an introvert or extrovert? This is where the personality test, Myers-Briggs comes into play. (What MBTI are you? Find out for free on this site, it's one of my favorites: 16 Personalities - this one takes maybe 10 minutes? I can't remember.)
Your Myers-Briggs personality profile is made up of a combination of 4 letters, each letter can be one of two options. Introvert or Extrovert (I or E) Intuition or Sensing (N or S) Thinking or Feeling (T or F) Judging or Perceiving (J or P). Each one of these is a scale, just because your profile says you are X letter, doesn't mean you have none of the other, it means that you tend to lean one way and some times that can just depend on the day. This assessment goes into so much more detail than just being an introvert or extrovert. They discuss likely patterns you might find in your life, what careers you might excel in, how you might handle situations with friends or in relationships. For those of you on a path of self-discovery, Myers-Briggs personality profiles are a great place to start.
I encourage everyone to take the Myers-Briggs test (even if you have done it before) and learn about your profile. What parts of it do you feel strongly towards? What parts might be a little bit off?