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Are You An Ambivert?

Mal12345

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Click here to read the 8 signs of being an ambivert:
8 Signs You're an Ambivert: The Most Flexible Personality Type

"Essentially, being an ambivert is like being a jack of all trades. Ambiverts are pretty flexible and can adapt well to whatever environment they’re in. There are those who have more introverted tendencies and those with more extroverted tendencies, but they’re pretty much half and half.

Wouldn’t it be great if personality tests like Myers-Briggs included an option of being ambiverted?"

Yes. But the same goes for the other 3 dysjunctions.
 

á´…eparted

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This doesn't really fit me, but that isn't surprising. I have traits of both an introvert and an extrovert, but I have significant more extroverted traits, as such at the end of the day I am a solid extrovert.

Per this list, none of them are particularly true. Some partially, others not at all.
 

fetus

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Yes. I agree with seven of these. And I've been self-identifying as an ambivert for awhile now. Over the years (or months) it seems that I flip-flop between more introverted and more extroverted. I think I'm in a slightly more extroverted state now, hence eNFP rather than iNFP. :)
 

PeaceBaby

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I identify with all of of these really, and I do score very close in the middle between I and E. But I am not really convinced that ambiverts are a "thing". It seems to me the scales must ultimately tip one way or the other, even if the preference is very slight.
 

Frosty

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Yeah many of these just seem to be the runoff of living a certain lifestyle/and learned adaptability thing. So vague... Yes I do enjoy time alone and also enjoy time with other people-shocker seeing as I live multidemnsionally.

Do I have energy preferences, yes. May I favor one side, one mode, because of underlying processes, I think so. Can this be said about everyone and the system in general-aka no ambiversion just development and situational differences between people of the same type-I'd say yes. May it be harder to distinguish/more time consuming/less favorable/ might some be more hesitant explore to distinguish, also believe yes.

I am going to throw caution to the wind and say that for the EP's and IJ's... Well.
 

Luv Deluxe

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Honestly, most of these traits seem more like the hallmarks of a mature, well-balanced adult than anything truly noteworthy with regard to introversion or extroversion. I'm really starting to feel like "ambivert" is just another buzzword; at the end of the day, I'm guessing that most people probably do prefer one mode over the other. For those who sincerely feel that they can't tell the difference, and this feeling persists consistently, then maybe the term applies.

Or, if ambiversion is a thing, then upwards of 90% of well-adjusted adults could likely identify. If this were the new standard, maybe introversion and extroversion might then only be regarded as such when demonstrated in their extremes (and possibly seen as psychological obstacles to be overcome, consequently).

Take the very first bullet point:
"If you have plans for the weekend, awesome. But if you don’t or if they get cancelled, that’s fine too, you had things to do anyway."
I'm pretty sure this is a healthy reaction and nothing more. If your cancelled plans aren't fine, what would you do instead? Throw a tantrum? Demand that somebody hang out with you? Show up at someone's house uninvited, because the show must go on? I think being adaptable is a positive trait, and one not necessarily linked to these dichotomies.

I think we all tend to fall somewhere along the spectrum. Even the most extroverted people I've met still require a moment here and there to shut off and go do their own thing, though it takes them longer to reach that point than myself. And though it may sound appealing sometimes, I'd be willing to bet that very few people would truly be happy living as hermits for the rest of their lives.

As for myself - I have many, many behaviors that make me appear extroverted, though I'm not. I love being stimulated by the world, I love exploring the world, I can be warm and friendly toward others and I generally don't experience crowd anxiety - but my energy ultimately comes from the inside-out, especially where people are concerned. (I love traveling alone so that I can soak up the experience without being drained or distracted by others, for example.)

I guess I've grown weary of seeing "AMBIVERTS!" everywhere, as though people have only just now discovered they're not purely one or the other, but both.

And if I see one more article using the word "recharge," or more specifically, the phrase "recharge your batteries," I swear... :dry: Hehe.
 

Patrick

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And if I see one more article using the word "recharge," or more specifically, the phrase "recharge your batteries," I swear... :dry: Hehe.
Thanks for saying that. I've always had a problem with that "test" of I/E--especially since my wife and so many others readily relate to it, while I can't. My energy level generally stays moderately high and steady all the time. If I get drained, it's because of overwork, lack of sleep, or something I ate. Mingling with people or being alone doesn't seem to have any effect.

David Keirsey never thought much of I/E. He always said it was the least important "dichotomy," and in his last book he avoided mentioning it at all (except to note, almost in passing, that some people tend to be reserved and others gregarious).

In my particular case, that posed a problem, though: I've always come up decidedly Introverted in tests (including the MBTI), and my being "quiet" or "reserved" is something others readily notice in me. Furthermore, it's something I've always felt was a big part of my personality.

However, I still could not relate to the "recharging batteries" thing. And as a matter of fact, I noticed myself often getting excited and enthused when in a friendly group of people. Sometimes I could even be the life of the party for a while. I do not avoid people to recharge; nor do I avoid people because I'm hypersensitive to noise or commotion. I avoid people due to anxiety. I worry what people think of me, and I fear rejection and abandonment. Hence, my nerves are on edge anytime I'm dealing with someone face-to-face; and I can only take so much of that before it becomes unpleasant. Still, if the relationship is good, it can be worth the stress; so I'll hang in there if it's rewarding.

After years of wondering about this and finding no good type-related explanation for it, just a month or two ago I finally realized my enneagram type is Six. That, to me, is the piece of the puzzle I've been missing. The description of type Six fills in the important-to-me part of personality typing that the Myers-Briggs system fails to capture. (Actually, MB tests do capture it--I always come up Introverted--but the descriptions fail to cover the kind of tension or anxiety I always feel, which is what Introversion means to me personally.)

Someone wrote that enneagram Sixes are the most likely to be ambiverted. But to me, ambiversion doesn't really exist. Rather, I/E can be confusing, and both I and E can manifest in many different ways. A pretty good test is whether you do more initiating or responding: do you readily approach others and initiate conversation, or do you usually wait for someone else to make the first move? My INTJ wife and I are both responders, so we wait for each other to initiate things, and therefore little gets done. Because of her directing nature, she initiates more often than I do, but she resents having to do it.

Other factors are regularly confused with Introversion and Extraversion: e.g., Informing vs Directing style, Affiliative vs Pragmatic mind-set, focus on Motive vs Structure. What Jung meant by I/E is different from what most people mean when they identify each other as introverts or extraverts.
 

EJCC

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5.5/8 apply to me. :shrug: I would describe myself as very extroverted, per the general MBTI use of the word "extroverted". But some people think I'm an introvert, by popular usage of the word, when they first get to know me -- just because I'm fairly independent and thoughtful, I sometimes need recharge time, and I also don't bulldoze people when I have conversations with them. My ISTJ roommate, for example, was convinced that I was an introvert for the entirety of this year, even though I do more talking than him when we interact.

I also scored 100% on Thinking Introversion when I took a test associated with the STAR model of introversion. So there's that.
 

Patrick

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I would describe myself as strongly ambiverted.
What does that mean? That you're really enthusiastic about both mingling with others and being alone?
 

Bush

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It's as much of a personality buzzword as "EQ."

See also: http://www.inc.com/larry-kim/ambive...p-influential-than-extroverts-here-s-why.html etc.


Most people do fit near the middle of the bell curve on personality traits. If at least half of the population could be considered ambiverts .. then, well, ambiversion wouldn't exactly be the superpower that articles like this make it out to be. It would be akin to saying that e.g. being able to hear is a superpower.

Moreover,
Jung said:
There is, finally, a third group... the most numerous and includes the less differentiated normal man... He constitutes the extensive middle group... I call the first group extraverted and the second group introverted.
From the man himself.

As far as myself, I have traits strongly associated with extraversion and other traits strongly associated with introversion. I'm not really "in between" on many individual traits. That is, if you take a gander at something like the Step II, the bar graphs for traits introversion/extraversion would reach the edge on one side or another.

Though they average out to "ambivert", all of those traits are supposed to be correlated; so I have no recourse other than to plant myself into the "N/A" group.

And N/A is the most elusive and magical and special and successful group of all.

Don't take that away from me.
 

cascadeco

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Yes, by that list, I'd be an ambivert.

Socially/interpersonally, I'm super introverted in some respects, but in other respects I'm not so much . So I do think I'm in the middle of the scale.

In mbti terms though, I'm definitely an introvert.

Luv Deluxe said:
If this were the new standard, maybe introversion and extroversion might then only be regarded as such when demonstrated in their extremes

I personally think most mbti traits are most 'relevant'/noticeable when at the extremes (and I thought I'd heard that that's more how Jung viewed all of the dichotomies? When observing less healthy/balanced individuals?). And if at the far extreme, for any of the traits, I think they'd be a bit more of a handicap for the individual, in terms of inability to access the other end. I'm not judging it as negative per se, just that it would be noticeable and pronounced.
 

Luv Deluxe

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I personally think most mbti traits are most 'relevant'/noticeable when at the extremes (and I thought I'd heard that that's more how Jung viewed all of the dichotomies? When observing less healthy/balanced individuals?). And if at the far extreme, for any of the traits, I think they'd be a bit more of a handicap for the individual, in terms of inability to access the other end. I'm not judging it as negative per se, just that it would be noticeable and pronounced.

I agree - that's why I concluded that these extremes might be regarded as generally pathological, an obstacle to be overcome. That's also why I can't take the concept of ambiversion very seriously insofar as being a special state of existence goes. I'm thinking ambiversion would probably include most well-balanced individuals, and, well...I don't think extroversion or introversion are bad things, they simply denote a preference. I think it's possible to be a non-anxious, friendly introvert just as much as I think it's possible to be a mellow, downtempo extrovert. We've come to lean so heavily on stereotypes that we're tossing out a new buzzword to cover the ground that doesn't fit the exaggerations that we've previously imagined.

I've always had a problem with that "test" of I/E--especially since my wife and so many others readily relate to it, while I can't. My energy level generally stays moderately high and steady all the time. If I get drained, it's because of overwork, lack of sleep, or something I ate. Mingling with people or being alone doesn't seem to have any effect.

I agree with this, actually! It's not that I'm regularly left feeling dissipated and exhausted from interaction with other people. It's more accurately that, after a while, I start jonesing pretty hard for some time alone to go do what I'd like to do. I'm definitely not taking a nap when the party's over; I'm just having fun writing, listening to music, adding movies to my "must see" list, working on some other random project - anything by myself. My energy levels are naturally very high and I sleep somewhat little.

I do have emotional barrier issues that can drain me a little bit, but I think it's somewhat unrelated to introversion in and of itself. Being around others feels a bit like being one of the eggs in a frying pan wherein all of the yolks have broken and spilled into each other; I can't keep others' emotions safely outside of myself. If there's any unhappiness, any stress, any pain, I feel it very viscerally and then am overwhelmed by a simultaneous desire to help the other person while also wanting to run away from it, as quickly as possible. That can certainly be tiresome, but usually I'm pretty good at foreseeing and dodging those situations before they arise. If not, I keep my cool and be strong for the other person...but then I'm definitely gonna want to treat myself, BY myself.

So when it comes to everyday people interaction, I don't feel like my batteries will automatically need to recharge. :dry: I simply would rather go do my own thing later, because I like being alone. It makes me happy. As in, it sure was fun dancing with you, sir; don't call me, I'll call you, k thanx bye.

It's a misleading parameter, the whole "recharge" thing.

Patrick said:
David Keirsey never thought much of I/E. He always said it was the least important "dichotomy," and in his last book he avoided mentioning it at all (except to note, almost in passing, that some people tend to be reserved and others gregarious).

In my particular case, that posed a problem, though: I've always come up decidedly Introverted in tests (including the MBTI), and my being "quiet" or "reserved" is something others readily notice in me. Furthermore, it's something I've always felt was a big part of my personality.

I can relate, but I am more of a cognitive functions girl, myself. I think the dichotomies can be a good way to start, but I also find they can foster some of the stereotypes we're struggling with here.

Patrick said:
However, I still could not relate to the "recharging batteries" thing. And as a matter of fact, I noticed myself often getting excited and enthused when in a friendly group of people. Sometimes I could even be the life of the party for a while. I do not avoid people to recharge; nor do I avoid people because I'm hypersensitive to noise or commotion. I avoid people due to anxiety. I worry what people think of me, and I fear rejection and abandonment. Hence, my nerves are on edge anytime I'm dealing with someone face-to-face; and I can only take so much of that before it becomes unpleasant. Still, if the relationship is good, it can be worth the stress; so I'll hang in there if it's rewarding.

For me, introversion hasn't meant anxiety. It has meant a preference for space, a lack of need for attention, and overall self-containment. I do have anxiety, but it's generalized and genetic - not social. People hardly shake me at all anymore, at least insofar as my self-confidence and worry for their opinions are concerned, but perhaps that might be due to my extremely unpleasant experiences growing up. Exposure therapy by accident, what didn't kill me made me stronger, etc. I'm not very worried about what people think, but I do care how they feel (and there certainly is a difference).

I get pretty tired of the idea that introverts simply can't deal with other people - that we're all just phobic and anxious - but sometimes anxiety really is a factor. And as much as I get annoyed with these relatively common assumptions about introverts and anxiety, I just want to say that your reasons here are totally valid, and I'm not trying to undercut them at all. Anxiety is a truly awful thing to grapple with. :(

Patrick said:
After years of wondering about this and finding no good type-related explanation for it, just a month or two ago I finally realized my enneagram type is Six. That, to me, is the piece of the puzzle I've been missing. The description of type Six fills in the important-to-me part of personality typing that the Myers-Briggs system fails to capture. (Actually, MB tests do capture it--I always come up Introverted--but the descriptions fail to cover the kind of tension or anxiety I always feel, which is what Introversion means to me personally.)

Someone wrote that enneagram Sixes are the most likely to be ambiverted. But to me, ambiversion doesn't really exist. Rather, I/E can be confusing, and both I and E can manifest in many different ways. A pretty good test is whether you do more initiating or responding: do you readily approach others and initiate conversation, or do you usually wait for someone else to make the first move? My INTJ wife and I are both responders, so we wait for each other to initiate things, and therefore little gets done. Because of her directing nature, she initiates more often than I do, but she resents having to do it.

Yes! The enneagram can be a big player in this game, too. My type combination probably looks like a joke to most people - and I understand why they might think so - but for me, it explains the duality in my personality better than anything else does. I'm an only child, and I was raised in an area where I literally had no neighbors to interact with. My parents were often unavailable in some way, so I learned as early as possible that I could get what I needed if I entertained myself. The pattern stuck; I like being busy, creative, and mentally active, but I'm cool with my ability to be all of those things on my own - even if I'm exploring a new city by myself. The only person I've ever been able to tolerate in large doses is my boyfriend (ISTP).

I'm happy that finding your enneagram type seems to have helped!

And I agree that there are certain tendencies that seem to give better I/E cues. Reticence? Gregariousness? How often does the individual seek attention or feedback from others? How often do you make the first move with others? If you're bored, will you find something to do on your own, or would you prefer to be bored with a friend?
 

Avocado

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I agree - that's why I concluded that these extremes might be regarded as generally pathological, an obstacle to be overcome. That's also why I can't take the concept of ambiversion very seriously insofar as being a special state of existence goes. I'm thinking ambiversion would probably include most well-balanced individuals, and, well...I don't think extroversion or introversion are bad things, they simply denote a preference. I think it's possible to be a non-anxious, friendly introvert just as much as I think it's possible to be a mellow, downtempo extrovert. We've come to lean so heavily on stereotypes that we're tossing out a new buzzword to cover the ground that doesn't fit the exaggerations that we've previously imagined.



I agree with this, actually! It's not that I'm regularly left feeling dissipated and exhausted from interaction with other people. It's more accurately that, after a while, I start jonesing pretty hard for some time alone to go do what I'd like to do. I'm definitely not taking a nap when the party's over; I'm just having fun writing, listening to music, adding movies to my "must see" list, working on some other random project - anything by myself. My energy levels are naturally very high and I sleep somewhat little.

I do have emotional barrier issues that can drain me a little bit, but I think it's somewhat unrelated to introversion in and of itself. Being around others feels a bit like being one of the eggs in a frying pan wherein all of the yolks have broken and spilled into each other; I can't keep others' emotions safely outside of myself. If there's any unhappiness, any stress, any pain, I feel it very viscerally and then am overwhelmed by a simultaneous desire to help the other person while also wanting to run away from it, as quickly as possible. That can certainly be tiresome, but usually I'm pretty good at foreseeing and dodging those situations before they arise. If not, I keep my cool and be strong for the other person...but then I'm definitely gonna want to treat myself, BY myself.

So when it comes to everyday people interaction, I don't feel like my batteries will automatically need to recharge. :dry: I simply would rather go do my own thing later, because I like being alone. It makes me happy. As in, it sure was fun dancing with you, sir; don't call me, I'll call you, k thanx bye.

It's a misleading parameter, the whole "recharge" thing.



I can relate, but I am more of a cognitive functions girl, myself. I think the dichotomies can be a good way to start, but I also find they can foster some of the stereotypes we're struggling with here.



For me, introversion hasn't meant anxiety. It has meant a preference for space, a lack of need for attention, and overall self-containment. I do have anxiety, but it's generalized and genetic - not social. People hardly shake me at all anymore, at least insofar as my self-confidence and worry for their opinions are concerned, but perhaps that might be due to my extremely unpleasant experiences growing up. Exposure therapy by accident, what didn't kill me made me stronger, etc. I'm not very worried about what people think, but I do care how they feel (and there certainly is a difference).

I get pretty tired of the idea that introverts simply can't deal with other people - that we're all just phobic and anxious - but sometimes anxiety really is a factor. And as much as I get annoyed with these relatively common assumptions about introverts and anxiety, I just want to say that your reasons here are totally valid, and I'm not trying to undercut them at all. Anxiety is a truly awful thing to grapple with. :(



Yes! The enneagram can be a big player in this game, too. My type combination probably looks like a joke to most people - and I understand why they might think so - but for me, it explains the duality in my personality better than anything else does. I'm an only child, and I was raised in an area where I literally had no neighbors to interact with. My parents were often unavailable in some way, so I learned as early as possible that I could get what I needed if I entertained myself. The pattern stuck; I like being busy, creative, and mentally active, but I'm cool with my ability to be all of those things on my own - even if I'm exploring a new city by myself. The only person I've ever been able to tolerate in large doses is my boyfriend (ISTP).

I'm happy that finding your enneagram type seems to have helped!

And I agree that there are certain tendencies that seem to give better I/E cues. Reticence? Gregariousness? How often does the individual seek attention or feedback from others? How often do you make the first move with others? If you're bored, will you find something to do on your own, or would you prefer to be bored with a friend?

I don't even really care at all what people think anymore. I go to restaurants with a bedhead, pajama bottoms, and eat like a barbarian. I still care at work, though, so I clean up real nice to go there.
 

Avocado

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Yes, by that list, I'd be an ambivert.

Socially/interpersonally, I'm super introverted in some respects, but in other respects I'm not so much . So I do think I'm in the middle of the scale.

In mbti terms though, I'm definitely an introvert.



I personally think most mbti traits are most 'relevant'/noticeable when at the extremes (and I thought I'd heard that that's more how Jung viewed all of the dichotomies? When observing less healthy/balanced individuals?). And if at the far extreme, for any of the traits, I think they'd be a bit more of a handicap for the individual, in terms of inability to access the other end. I'm not judging it as negative per se, just that it would be noticeable and pronounced.

I've become more introverted in every respect with age, except I'm not really that shy.
 

Patrick

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I've become more introverted in every respect with age, except I'm not really that shy.
Hmm ... I hadn't thought about it, but I guess I've probably become a bit more extraverted with age. Not in every respect, though. My pattern is something like this:

Early childhood: open and not shy, but introverted in the sense of being more inwardly aware than others

Late childhood and teens: intimidated into becoming shy and self-absorbed, but tried repeatedly to break free of that

Early adulthood (twenties and thirties): shy and reserved but less fearful; still self-absorbed, but willing to take risks

Later adulthood (forties and fifties): reserved and inwardly anxious, but outwardly a little more open and gregarious
 

Bush

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when at the extremes (and I thought I'd heard that that's more how Jung viewed all of the dichotomies? When observing less healthy/balanced individuals?).
Yeah, and this is something that everyone needs to remember when they talk about Jung/MBTI. They need to beat it into their own skulls until they break.
 

cascadeco

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Yeah, and this is something that everyone needs to remember when they talk about Jung/MBTI. They need to beat it into their own skulls until they break.

haha, want to quote this. :)

Patrick said:
Hmm ... I hadn't thought about it, but I guess I've probably become a bit more extraverted with age. Not in every respect, though. My pattern is something like this:

Early childhood: open and not shy, but introverted in the sense of being more inwardly aware than others

Late childhood and teens: intimidated into becoming shy and self-absorbed, but tried repeatedly to break free of that

Early adulthood (twenties and thirties): shy and reserved but less fearful; still self-absorbed, but willing to take risks

Later adulthood (forties and fifties): reserved and inwardly anxious, but outwardly a little more open and gregarious

I'm only in my late 30's, yet to reach 40's/50's, but I have a somewhat similar pattern; think mine was a little more extreme in teenage years though.

I was apparently very open/fearless at a very young age, with adults. I'd walk up to strangers/ talk to them; my uncle joked with my mom that she'd have to be careful with me.

By junior high I went 100% inwards, I became fearful of my peers, due to all of the social cliques and thinking most people were 'mean'. By college I began opening up again, was fairly outgoing, but in a quiet way, enjoyed going out, dancing, hanging out with friends; I didn't really tire socially. I've never been a talker, though; I'm just not worn out doing activities / sharing experiences with people (though get extremely anxious if I don't feel I fit in). In 20's I was somewhat depressed for several years, which threw me into a bit of a funk. Since then I'd just consider myself fairly introverted, but definitely not shy, and I like having jobs where I'm interacting with people on a very light-hearted basis. I like a mix of staying active/doing things, and being on my own. I start to really dislike being on my own after more than a few days though.
 
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