Ambivert Happiness

For the last two weeks we have covered happiness concerning introverts and extroverts. Now enters ambivert. Behold! A person who is not fully introverted nor fully extroverted. For those of us who have been asked which “-verted” nature are we, this may feel familiar.

Believe it or not, there was a time when psychologists thought there were only two types of people; introverts and extroverts. And given the standard definition of happiness, extroverts were happier. TWO TYPES OF PEOPLE! That’s like saying water can only be hot or cold. [Buzzer sound] Wrong. In the same fashion that water can be a multitude of temperatures depending on the environment, we too can show different personalities.

Let’s create a scale (1-100). 1 will represent an absolute introvert and 100 will represent an absolute extrovert. Where on this scale would you feel comfortable saying you fall? If the scale was split into thirds, most of us would fall between 34-66 on the scale on an average day. Why did we say “on an average day”? Like water, we are affected by our surroundings. Our personality will slide up and down the scale.

Is there something within us that drives this reaction? Nerd Time! Scientists are beginning to understand the neural connection from the cerebellum to the ventral tegmental area (VTA) of the brain. Short story, the cerebellum contributes to our social behavior. What’s new is how it works with the VTA to produce a reward system that drives our social personalities.

So how do I know if I’m ambiverted? Do these apply to you?

I can work comfortably alone or with a group.

I can work at a station for some time, but being stagnant for too long is boring.

I can entertain small talk, but it’s not my forte.

Too much down time is boring. However, too much social time leaves me drained.

If this sounds like you, then you may fall into the ambivert personality class. The important thing to remember is to be honest with yourself. Don’t try to be a personality that you’re not. That would leave any of us drained. Knowing and understanding our personality and how they work is an important step in finding happiness. If you feel bored, get out and do something social. If you feel drained, find some alone time. As with any cycle there is a time to be out and there is a time to stay in. Here’s to finding that balance and finding life’s happiness.

Until the next blog, live life, be happy, and find life’s happiness.

Steve Curtis

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