Introvert or Extrovert? Maybe You’re an Ambivert.

We all know people who are so shy, we have to pry words out of their mouths. The whole room goes quiet when they begin to speak. We call them introverts. Other people can talk to anyone in any social situation. We label them extroverts.

introverts and extroverts

Introverts and extroverts are polar opposites, so how can we be one or the other? My eyes roll with every debate. Introvert or extrovert? GAH! There’s a gap the size of the Grand Canyon between them. It’s the perfect place for another personality type called, ambiverts. I would guess it comes from the Latin word ambi – both and verts – green. Both green? No. That’s probably not right.

In order to understand this new personality type, we need to review what we know about introverts and extroverts.

Introverts are reflective and happier alone with their thoughts. They energize through being by themselves. They stress out in social situations. If they do go out, they are exhausted afterward.

According to Wikipedia, extroverts are “enthusiastic, talkative, assertive and gregarious.” Extroverts get bored hanging out at home and are energized by socializing.

I’m a classic extrovert, but I’m definitely not comfortable in every situation. Who is? Am I still an extrovert? Definitely.

IMG_0116

I know introverts who have their extroverted moments too. My dad is happiest lost in his thoughts while drawing and has never been into socializing. Even he enjoys capturing everyone’s attention with a funny story. Is he still an introvert? Definitely.

These guys look pretty comfortable doing their extroverted center of attention thing.

Dancing ambiverts

Lets review, shall we? According to Myers Briggs personality test, introverts are thought-oriented, seek depth of knowledge and influence. They prefer more substantial interaction, and get their energy from spending time alone. Extroverts are action-oriented, seek a wide range of knowledge and influence. They prefer frequent interaction, and get energy from spending time with people.

Ambiverts have both personalities in balance. They can talk your ear off like an extrovert, but as soon as someone else enters the conversation, they will listen and step back like an introvert. They love socializing as much as they love their time alone. According to the Wharton School of Management, they make the best salespeople.

Definitely an ambivert. Peter Parker by day, Spiderman at night.

The spidey dance

Billy could be an introvert, extrovert, or an ambivert. Everyone likes to read, but it appears as though he hasn’t quite gotten the concept of reading or turning the pages. 
kid reading book

Somewhere along the line, some kind of crazy confusion began. Some believe their love for staying home to work on projects meant they were introverted.

Writing is my passion. I’m an extrovert who loves to write. Yes. This is possible. There are a few of us out there in the world. I can’t write in social situations. It would be impractical and awkward to lug my laptop to cocktail parties or tennis matches. I am happy and content to stay home where I can concentrate.

This guy has been inside working way too long. His mother has to freak him out in order for him to go outside and play. Is he an introvert, extrovert, or an ambivert? I would go with extrovert.

Working too long

Could I be an ambivert? Nope. I took the Loner Wolf Assessment. I am a straight-up extrovert who gets tired after staying up late dance bombing, mingling, and meeting new people.

Wake up little Susie!

If there wasn’t a personality type in between extroverts and introverts, I was going to make one up:

Omniverts. Omni – all. People who have all traits. Think of how cool that would be. They could have a different personality every time you socialize, like Sybil. It would be like hanging out with somebody new every time.

220px-Sybil_DVDWant to take a quick test to see which personality you are? I bet you’ll be surprised. Let me know! The Loner Wolf Assessment. (The first arrow will take you to a psychic. Click on “Take quiz.”)

Thank you, Carrie Rubin, for informing me about ambiverts.

What personality type do you have?

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94 thoughts on “Introvert or Extrovert? Maybe You’re an Ambivert.

  1. I love this post! Nobody ever accused me of being an introvert but I’m no wild rider either. I took the test and got:

    “You’re an ambivert. That means you’re neither strongly introverted nor strongly extraverted. Recent research by Adam Grant of the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Management has found that ambiverts make the best salespeople. Ambiverts tend to be adept at the quality of attunement. They know when to push and when to hold back, when to speak up and when to shut up. So don’t fall for the myth of the extraverted sales star. Just keep being your ambiverted self.”

    Who knew?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Julie! I think ambiverts are the best of both worlds. They are supposed to make great salespeople. I had thought I might be that personality type since I get exhausted after socializing, but when I really thought about it, I’m exhausted after being wired!
      Thanks for stopping by. I’m glad you took the test!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’d add one more category……an inextrovert. I’m an introvert, But I was in industrial sales for 25 years. Hated almost every minute of it, but had to raise a family somehow. I was also very good at it. I could go out each day, shed my introvert cloak and party like it was 1999. (Wait,one year it actually was!). Then as soon as I got my kids through college, I quit and became a paralegal where I was in my introvertic (not a word) element. Looking back it seems deceitful, but i played with the cards I was dealt.

    Great post, Susie. Your GIFs are hilarious. And you are an accomplished sketch artist…..but then you knew that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Al! It was fun to go through GIFs. And the drawing was a last minute thing. I finished editing and had an extra hour.

      I love that you played your cards and the part of extrovert. My sister has been doing that for years. She is introverted like my dad, but works retail and has been top in sales! I hope she takes that 1-2 minute test. Maybe she is an ambivert, but I doubt it. I would imagine there are a lot of introverts who find themselves in sales.

      In one of the articles I read, you can tell an introvert from an extrovert just by looking at them. We always smile when making eye contact, even with complete strangers. I even go farther than that. I usually say hello. Ha!

      Like

  3. I often feel confused about the whole extrovert vs introvert things as I can see myself being both. Took the test & it appears I am an ambivert! Balance on both extremes is what works for me I think. Great post Susie!

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    • That is so cool! This new personality type makes so much sense to me. Ambiverts are supposed to make great salespeople too since they “slide up and down the scale” at will.
      Thanks so much, Lynn!

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    • Perfect! You might want to take the test for kicks and giggles. It was eye-opening for me. I thought I was an ambivert since I equate socializing with exhaustion. I tend to be wired after coming home and can’t sleep. But I rarely am the one tired before the end of the event. I’m usually the last to go!
      Thanks for reading, Mary!

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  4. Great post, Susie, and thank you so much for the mention! I think ambiverts get the best of both worlds. My husband is one, and I envy his ability to slip in and out of introversion and extroversion. Another thing to note is that shyness isn’t the same as introversion. Many introverts are shy, but many aren’t. Over the years my shyness improved significantly. Unfortunately my introversion hasn’t. 🙂

    Wonderful read. Thank you!

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    • That is so true!
      I found researching ambiverts so fascinating. I really thought I was one, but no way. I get tired after coming after socializing when I’m not able to slow my brain down enough to work or sleep. 🙂 My husband took the test this morning too. He’s also an ambivert which is what I suspected. An ambivert would be a great personality to have, but in one article it said some can be wishy washy in decision-making. Thank God, my husband is not like that at all!
      Thanks Carrie!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Introvert, no surprise. What I found interesting was in the description, it states, “You’re an introvert. To get better at moving others…” Sooooo introverts need to get better? We have a disease or something? Oh, wait. I don’t mean to call attention to myself. Never mind.

    Great post!

    Like

    • Hahaha! I didn’t see that since I tested as an extrovert. I’m sure every personality type has its drawbacks. Extroverts need to become better listeners and I’ve calmed waaaay down through the years. Do I hear laughing in the background???
      Ambiverts tend to be wishy-washy. I live with one who is an excellent decision maker. These are all HUGE generalizations.
      Thanks for stopping by, Maggie!

      Like

  6. I balance between both and now know there is a term for me – YAY!!! My hubbie calls me an “acquired taste” – ha! My mom tells me I have no “medium button” – all or nothing. My middle nephew is just like me and we get each other – love that most of all. I really try hard not to label myself and just keep on keeping on 🙂

    Happy Day – Enjoy!

    Like

  7. Definitely an ambivert. Around people I know or have a lot in common with, I’d appear to be an extrovert. In a large crowd or among strangers, I tend to look for a corner to hide in. Glad to find the word ambivert. Thanks, Susie.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I took the test and am an ambivert like you! I think of myself as an introvert by day and an extravert by evening, then an introvert by night again, unless I take a nap and hit the party circuit late at night again, LOL! This series of comments is one of your most fun ever, got a huge kick out of Wally’s schizovert especially.

    Like

    • That is so cool! I’m glad you took the test. Some of the comments have been hilarious.

      I am an extrovert. I don’t have that ability to slide from one to the other. In fact, I’m antsy and have to take a walk right now while it’s not raining. 🙂
      Thanks Gail!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Whoa. It said I’m an ambivert! I would have guessed extreme introvert. Well, I suppose it’s due to the fact that I love to strike up conversations with people, even strangers. I just don’t like big groups or crowds. One on one is where I’m best. I’ve always been told I’m a great listener.

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    • What? Sorry. 🙂
      An ambivert is the best of both worlds. They can hang out in any situation.
      I get restless after a day of writing on my computer. Being isolated is depressing for me. I was born to be Wild! Ha. I couldn’t let that one slide by….

      Like

  10. I took the test, and – ta da – I’m an ambivert! I kind of knew this about myself, but didn’t know there was a term for it until today. For the most part, social situations leave me drained, with the exception of when I gather with close friends. Then I feel energized and thankful for the time with them. Otherwise, I look forward to being alone and tend to pursue independent activities. I’m so glad that we’re recognizing people’s different tendencies – when I was in grade school, introversion was labeled “shy” and could be a negative mark on my report card. “Needs to work on social skills” and that kind of thing. We all have our gifts!

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    • We do have our gifts! Ambiverts are the adjustable personality type. That’s cool that you predicted that. I guess we know ourselves better than anyone.
      I was confused when I found out that extroverts gain energy from social situations since I am drained after. I think it’s because I am so wired, I can’t sleep! 🙂
      Thanks for stopping by and taking the quiz!

      Like

    • Thanks for taking the quiz, Jessica! That is the even-keeled personality type.
      I found it interesting too. I wondered if I would be an ambivert, but after researching all three, I knew I would probably test in as an extrovert and I did, No surprise to anyone who knows me… 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m definitely an ambivert which works perfectly traveling all the time. I enjoy my alone time but can equally be comfortable socializing with strangers. Interesting concepts 🙂

    Like

    • That is great! Ambiverts are in the majority of comments today. You can handle any situation! Excellent! 🙂
      I had to switch out the test since Dan Pink must be working on his website. I added a new personality quiz from Loner Wolf. I tested “positively” for extrovert again!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Ambivert – 57 – not a surprise, because there are times when i am movin; and groovin’ and others when I just want to hang back and hang loose. Nice post and I love your drawings and sketches. Thanks for sharing the personality quiz. It’s summer and time to get out and enjoy the outdoors. I read you guys are getting all sorts of rain – stay dry and get out. it’s been pretty wet here in the midwest – Illinois and Michigan, but there is a lot of summer left to get out and strut my ambivert self.

    Like

    • It’s overcast here again and rain is predicted. I’ve been trying to get out on my bike. It looks like it’s clearing up a little bit, so maybe I’ll chance it! Every day that’s not 90-100 degrees in July is a great day.
      Ambiverts are the coolest! The only thing I question is how tired I am after socializing. I might be an extrovert ambivert tendencies.
      Thanks so much! I had an extra hour the other day. I figured if drawing took longer than that, I wouldn’t use it.
      Keep on strutting, Clay! Happy Summer to you.

      Like

  13. this was loads of fun, Susie! I’m an “an Extrovert with some Ambivert functions.” I’m not sure that is really correct, I think I am more middle of the road than they do, but …

    The world needs all kinds, I think.

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  14. No! I could never tell that you’re a extrovert. I am shocked! lol. Great job explaining this phenomena Susie. I had never heard of omnivert. That was new to me. Speaking of me, I think I fall into the ambivert category with a little omnivert sprinkled in. Very interesting. I hope you’re enjoying your summer! ((Hugs))

    Like

  15. Good to know there is a spectrum and that I don’t have to be one thing or the other. Small talk is death to me, unless I’ve had a few drinks (social lubricant). But I love good conversation and someone who can flirt properly – funny, clever, non-threatening – is worth their weight in gold. Maybe flirting should be taught in school. And the tango.

    Like

    • I love that idea. There should at least be online classes. I thought I might be an ambivert, but other than my energy level soaring and then crashing I’m an extrovert. Nice to meet you!

      Like

  16. It amazes me how many bloggers say they are introverts. I wonder if this is a tag we are disinterested enough to hang on ourselves, or if it should be left up to others to classify us?

    Like

    • You can only classify yourself since you are the only one who knows how you feel in certain situations. Take the quiz!

      I grew up with a dad and sister who were introverts. I want my sister to take the test. There wasn’t a classification for those who can roll either way. Finally there is!

      Like

  17. I used to suffer from social anxiety, but as I got older I became much more comfortable in social settings. I still really love my alone time BUT, I notice I really look forward to getting out with other people now, which is way different for me. I guess I AM an ambivert! You’re ALWAYS teaching me something valuable.
    PS- Nice artwork.

    Like

    • Thanks Cayman! I had an extra hour so I drew it up.
      I think the majority of people are ambiverts.
      I had thought I was an ambivert since socializing wears me out. Since I’m pretty hyped at the time, I’m an extrovert like I thought.
      It was fun to research!

      Like

  18. I’m an introvert who knows how to get along in social situations, but I need twice as much time to refuel as I spend socializing! I think because I can speak in front of people and I don’t “hide out” people think I’m more of an extrovert than I am, but by the Myers Briggs I hardly have a drop of extrovert in me. My husband is an extrovert–I think we balance each other out! Ambivert is new to me, but a fantastic word! 🙂

    Like

    • Did you take the one minute test? You may be an ambivert. There’s another one that’s super fast and interesting too – http://www.danpink.com/assessment/ It was down the day I posted, but it’s back up now.
      Ambiverts are probably to new to be included in Myers Briggs. I get tired afterward, but am super hyped up when around people, so who knows?

      Like

      • I will definitely take the test! I enjoy these things. 🙂 It might be fun for us to take at work as well…we are a very mixed group of personalities and we amuses each other with our differences. Thank you!

        Like

  19. That said, I am an extrovert who has learned to appreciate the benefit of being alone (and not lonely). One of my best friends at work is one of those people who everyone seeks out, yet she shared with me that sometimes she has to withdraw just plain because it feels like it takes too much energy to be around people. She hates having a birthday because of the attention. Yet she is definitely someone I would label as an extrovert. I can relate to her.

    Like

  20. Hey, hey, Susie, I’ve missed you! What a fun post. I thought I was an introvert who loves to be a goofball, too, but I scored 42, so I’m an ambivert!

    I love your drawing of extrovert Susie. You’re so talented. I’ve been meaning to get over here to say hi, but moving and family stuff and life stuff have kept me out of the loop, leaning toward my introvert side!

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    • Lynne! It is so great to “see” you!! I think about you so often. Moving is so huge and you have grandkids to take care of on top of that.
      Ambiverts make the best salespeople. That must help when pitching your books! What are you working on these days?

      Like

  21. I took the quiz and got “Extrovert with some Ambivert functions” I would totally agree! I love people and I love my alone time, but I’m definitely more extroverted. Great article! Very interesting!

    Like

  22. Ambivert Alert! Ambivert Alert! 51% score. Perchance am I balanced?! Scary!

    INTJ + Ambivert + Leo! Worldview: pleasantly pessimistic realist. I should stick this on my Twitter profile. haha

    This is so cool, Susie.

    Like

  23. Pingback: Are You Adventurous? Take the Quiz! | Susie Lindau's Wild Ride

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