Ever since we were little we have been taught about differences of the personality spectrum. We have always been divided into two groups: the introverts and the extroverts. The introverts are the people who enjoy their alone time and are often described as “shy.” Extroverts, on the other hands, are the social butterflies of society. The ones who thrive in large groups of people and hate being left alone. These two different personality types seem to be world’s apart, don’t they? But what happens when someone has a personality that settles somewhere in the middle?
I have spent the last five years of my life trying to answer that question.
Whenever I was little, I was the absolute definition of an introvert. I only had three friends, mostly because they were kind of forced to be my friends because our mothers were friends too. I refused to speak during classes to the point where teachers arranged meetings with my parents to talk about how terribly shy I was. I would get overwhelmed in social situations and would always prefer to cuddle up with a book rather than to go to a birthday party. I was an introvert, and I wasn’t ashamed of it. That is just who I was.
But then as I got older, things changed. I started putting myself out there. I didn’t want to be the wallflower anymore, I wanted to be the tallest sunflower in the whole meadow. So I took chances, joined clubs, and started using my voice. And, truth be told, I enjoyed it. I enjoyed being the person that was not afraid to make new friends. I enjoyed being heard.
I started hanging out with friends more often. I spoke in front of large crowds. I found myself thriving in social situations that I would have went to great lengths to avoid in the past. So, by that logic I should identify as an extrovert now, right?
Because even though I now find myself aligning more on the extroverted side of the spectrum more than I ever thought I would, I still have a lot of introverted tendencies. I still enjoy staying at home all alone. I still have times where I get overwhelmed with the thought of having to be around a lot of people. Oh, and I definitely still have severe shyness that I have to force myself to overcome almost everyday. So, where does that leave me?
Introverts and extroverts are supposed to be polar opposites. But I have somehow been able to be both. And, to be honest, I don’t mind being both. I like that I am able to hold a conversation with anybody and can spark friendships in the matter of minutes. But I also like that I am more than okay with staying the night in with only a book as my company. I like that I don’t constantly want to feel alone, but I don’t necessarily need to be surrounded by others either. It feels like the perfect balance for me, and that makes me feel more satisfied than I would if I was a full extrovert or a full introvert.
And I feel like I’m not the only person who is like this, I have plenty of friends that can be shy or would rather spend their time alone but they can also be a social butterfly if they need to be. Honestly, personality types don’t stay set in stone for our whole lives. We evolve and mature with age as we learn how to adjust our social lives to benefit us.
So, I’m not just an introvert. Or just an extrovert. I’m just a happy mixture of both and that is more than fine with me. I’m satisfied with being an extroverted introvert.
I hope that someone relates to this! Surely I cannot be the only extroverted introvert out there. Comment below about your personality type and if you’re happy with it! Also, be sure to like and follow! And as always, stay rad.