Sunday, June 25, 2017


Many people have taken the Myers Briggs personality test. Like many personality tests, it qualifies you on a handful of elements as being either "A" or "B". "Do you prefer to focus on the basic information you take in or do you prefer to interpret and add meaning?" "When making decisions, do you prefer to first look at logic and consistency or first look at the people and special circumstances?"  And so on...

As someone who doesn't tend to see the world as either black or white, I have a hard time with these types of tests and justifying whether or not I think the test came to the correct conclusion about me.  I took the Myers Briggs test a couple years ago in the process of a training course that I was taking and I was intrigued by the results.  The training course had us take the test before the course and then during the course we evaluated ourselves based on the elements of Myers Briggs before finding out our results.  

The big thing I always struggle to identify about myself is if I'm an introvert or an extrovert. That is, do I prefer to focus on the outer world or on my own inner world?  Depending on the day, my mood, and the situation, I clearly exhibit qualities of both.  This is probably because my mom is one of the biggest extroverts I know and my dad is a huge introvert.  Unlike my brother who is generally introverted himself, I managed to get qualities of both.

What amazed me when I took the Myers Briggs test is that in evaluating myself, I recognized that I am both introverted and extroverted.  But the results of the test showed that I am an introverted extrovert.  That is to say that I am an extrovert, but I'm am so close to being an introvert that it's sometimes hard to tell.  After finding this out, I felt like my life made so much more sense.

Introverted extroverts aren't very common, but I think there are more of them in this world than you may think.  I find it interesting about myself that I thrive on being around people and I tend to be able to hold a conversation with most people, whether I previously knew them or not.  Yet, on the other hand, I enjoy staying in on a Saturday night by myself and I love to travel solo.  To be able to explain this quality is a bit challenging for me.  I know that it is who I am, and I love that about myself.  

I think, for me, it has to do with my independence.  I am one of the most independent people I know.  I don't like to rely on other people to go places and do things (mostly because people often times back out of plans), which means that many times, I go alone.  I still thrive on human interactions, but I'm also perfectly content by myself.  I'd be curious to know what drives other introverted extroverts.

Note: There is a difference between an introverted extrovert and an extroverted introvert. An introverted extrovert gets energy from other people, but still enjoys having time alone. An extroverted introvert gets energy from being alone, but still enjoys interacting with others.