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19 Real Life Examples of An Extroverted Introvert So You Don’t Get Confused

19 Real Life Examples of An Extroverted Introvert So You Don’t Get Confused

If you’re like me, you’re an extroverted introvert. You can be outgoing, yet you desperately need your alone time.

You can’t do that. You’re one or the other.

No, this is how I am. And that’s how many other people are. But we’re often misunderstood.

Take for instance, people often see me as completely, inarguably, extroverted because that’s the personality that gets the most attention. The other side of me, the side that stays home and reads all day, doesn’t get any attention (but I love doing that, take a look at my reading list if you don’t believe me).

Let me tell you what happened a few weekends ago.

I spent Saturday alone, reading, writing, getting errands done. At 8:54 pm, I got a text from a friend, asking what I was up to. He was making plans to go out. I responded, “Nothing. What’s up?”

Fifteen minutes passed and he didn’t respond. I wanted to go out and considered calling him to see what was happening, but also wanted to sit in bed and read a book before going to bed at 10 pm. So I didn’t call.

Another fifteen minutes passed and I finally made the call. It took half an hour and a significant amount of energy for me to put down my book, pick up my phone, and call him to figure out the plan for that night.

So instead of staying in and reading myself to sleep, I left my apartment at 9:30 pm to go out for drinks.

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And you know what I did? I danced. And I was obnoxious. And I had tons of fun.

But the next day? I sat at a coffee shop and read a book. I did some grocery shopping, cooked, and ate alone while watching Netflix. I spoke to almost no one. I only texted my friend who I went out with the night before to see how he was doing. I didn’t want to talk to anyone. And I loved it.

So yes I’m outgoing. But not all the time.

The fact is, extroversion and introversion isn’t an either/or type of thing. It’s a spectrum and you can lie anywhere along that spectrum.

For us, we happen to be very close to the middle and even flip-flop between the two.

I know, it’s confusing.

Some of us learned to become more extroverted because we realize that the basis of human nature is grounded in interacting with each other – it’s kind of unavoidable.

To relieve you of some confusion, here are a few things we’d like you to know about extroverted introverts.

1. We’re often quiet, but it doesn’t mean we don’t want to talk.

We most likely have plenty of thoughts we want to talk about, but think that they won’t interest you. We’d rather listen to you talk because we want to learn about you and we know you’d enjoy talking.

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2. And just because we like being around people doesn’t mean we want to talk.

Talking requires a lot of effort. For us, being around people is often enough to make us happy. I know, it’s a little confusing.

3. We like hanging out one on one better than in groups. We’ll listen to you forever.

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    One on one hangouts are more intimate and we like that. It means we get a chance to actually get to know you and have a thorough conversation about what we really care about instead of making small talk that an entire group can contribute to.

    4. We suck at responding to texts because sometimes we don’t want to talk – to anyone.

    It’s not that we hate people or that we’re annoyed. Sometimes we’ve just been around people so much that we’re exhausted from talking and texting and Skyping and we just don’t want to talk. We’re totally open to hanging out in person, just don’t expect us to talk too much when we’re in one of these moods.

    5. We’re open to meeting your other friends. Just let us know ahead of time that we’ll be meeting new people so we can mentally prepare ourselves to socialize.

    We’re not closed off to meeting new people, it’s just a very exhausting thing to do. So we literally have to prepare ourselves to socialize. We have to get into the mindset of, “Okay, I’m going to be talking a lot.”

    6. Despite needing our alone time, we do get lonely.

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      It’s difficult to balance between alone time and not feeling lonely. Often we’ll want to go out because we feel alone, but our apartment is so comfortable that we won’t want to leave.

      7. It’s hard to get us out, but we’ll have a great time when we go out.

      Sometimes we’ll require some coercing to get us out of the house. Again, it’s not that we don’t want to go out, we just start thinking, “What if it’s not fun? I could totally be reading my book. What if the tickets are sold out? What if they don’t actually want me to go and they’re just inviting me to be nice? We begin to draw into our own heads and make up things that could go wrong and use them as excuses to not go out.

      8. We’ll happily chat up your parents/friends/girlfriend/boyfriend/boss/etc., but once it’s over, we require silence.

      After so much talking, we really need to recharge.

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      9. We’re not always the most talkative people in a group, but if someone is in need of a social life jacket, we can step up and offer that.

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        Again, we’ll happily chat someone up if the situation arises. We get that conversation can be uncomfortable, so if we see someone who is worse than us at holding a conversation, then we’ll take the initiative to make them feel more comfortable.

        10. We live in our heads even if it seems like we put ourselves out there.

        Even when we’re being outgoing, our thoughts are still running and analyzing the situation.

        11. Because we can be outgoing and calculated at the same time, sometimes we end up being leaders. But that does not mean we want praise, nor do we want to talk about how great we are.

        People seem to think that we’re fit to be leaders. We can stand up and talk in front of crowds when we need to. We can make decisions when we need to. But we often analyze ourselves and don’t think highly of our skill sets. Sometimes we don’t believe we’re good enough to lead. We always think we can be better so praise often makes us cringe.

        12. We bounce between wanting to be noticed for our hard work to panicking over the thought of somebody else paying more than 30 seconds of attention to us.

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          Sometimes we want attention, other times it’s hard to believe anyone would spend more than 10 seconds on us.

          13. People think we’re flirtatious. We’re not.

          We understand that interacting with people is a necessary part of life. So we make an effort to do it intentionally, and genuinely want people to know that they have our undivided interest and attention.

          14. We get mad at ourselves for wanting to stay in and letting our friends down.

          Which is why we sometimes force ourselves to go out. To let our friends know that we enjoy spending time with them, not because we want to be out.

          15. We’re at our happiest in places like coffee shops and cafés: surrounded by people, but still closed off and keeping to yourself.

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            We just like being around people, even if they’re strangers. It’s the compromise of being around people but not having to talk to them.

            16. We have a constant inner struggle of controlling our introverted side.

            It’s frustrating because we’ll realize when we start withdrawing into our own minds and become extremely introspective. It happens when we’re in really big crowds. And the only thought is, “Oh no, it’s happening. No. I have to talk to someone now. But it’s so difficult. No. Yes, you have to talk or else you’re going to end up in your head for the rest of the night.”

            17. We really don’t like small talk.

            We’d avoid small talk if we could. We want to really get to know you. We want to know what you think about, what your goals are, what your family is like. We don’t want to talk about how bad the weather is. But if that’s what you’re comfortable talking about, then we’ll talk about it.

            18. We don’t actually have a staple “group” of friends.

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              We often pick and choose one or two individuals from different social groups that make up our closest friends. But we make this handful of best friends our life and we’d do anything for them.

              19. If we like you, we really like you. We’re extremely picky about who we spend our time and energy on. If we’ve hung out multiple times, take it as a compliment.

              Seriously. If it’s such a struggle to talk to people and if we get so exhausting going out, it’s a big deal if we’re willing to spend our time and energy with you. It isn’t to say that we’re full of ourselves. We just wouldn’t want to spend that energy with people whose company we don’t enjoy.

              Featured photo credit: Unsplash via download.unsplash.com

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              Last Updated on October 30, 2019

              How the Stages of Change Model Helps You Change Your Habits

              How the Stages of Change Model Helps You Change Your Habits

              Change is tough, there’s no doubt about it. Old habits are hard to shift, and adopting a new lifestyle can feel like an uphill battle!

              In this article, you will learn about a simple yet powerful model:

              Stages of change model, that explains the science behind personal transformation.

              You’ll discover how and why some changes stick whereas others don’t last, and how long it takes to build new habits.

              What is the Stages of Change Model?

              Developed by researchers J.O. Prochaska and Carlo C. DiClemente over 30 years ago[1] and outlined in their book Changing For Good, the Stages of Change Model, also known as the Transtheoretical Model, was formed as a result of the authors’ research with smokers.

              Prochaska and DiClemente were originally interested in the question of why some smokers were able to quit on their own, whereas others required professional help. Their key conclusion was that smokers (or anyone else with a bad habit) quits only when they are ready to do so.

              Here’s an illustration done by cartoonist and illustrator Simon Kneebone about the different stages a smoker experiences when they try to quit smoking:

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                The Stages of Change Model looks at how these conscious decisions are made. It emphasizes that change isn’t easy. People can spend a long time stuck in a stage, and some may never reach their goals.[2]

                The model has been applied in the treatment of smoking, alcoholism, and drugs. It is also a useful way of thinking about any bad habit. Social workers, therapists, and psychologists draw on the model to understand their patients’ behaviors, and to explain the change process to the patients themselves.

                The key advantages to the model is that it is simple to understand, is backed by extensive research, and can be applied in many situations.

                The Stages of Change Model is a well-established psychological model that outlines six stages of personal change:

                1. Precontemplation
                2. Contemplation
                3. Determination
                4. Action
                5. Maintenance
                6. Termination

                How are these stages relevant to changing habits?

                To help you visualize the stages of change and how each progresses to the next one, please take a look at this wheel:[3]

                  Let’s look at the six stages of change,[4] together with an example that will show you how the model works in practice:

                  Stage 1: Precontemplation

                  At this stage, an individual does not plan to make any positive changes in the next six months. This may because they are in denial about their problem, feel too overwhelmed to deal with it, or are too discouraged after multiple failed attempts to change.

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                  For example, someone may be aware that they need to start exercising, but cannot find the motivation to do so. They might keep thinking about the last time they tried (and failed) to work out regularly. Only when they start to realize the advantages of making a change will they progress to the next stage.

                  Stage 2: Contemplation

                  At this stage, the individual starts to consider the advantages of changing. They start to acknowledge that altering their habits would probably benefit them, but they spend a lot of time thinking about the downside of doing so. This stage can last for a long time – possibly a year or more.

                  You can think of this as the procrastinating stage. For example, an individual begins to seriously consider the benefits of regular exercise, but feels resistant when they think about the time and effort involved. When the person starts putting together a concrete plan for change, they move to the next stage.

                  The key to moving from this stage to the next is the transformation of an abstract idea to a belief (e.g. from “Exercise is a good, sensible thing to do” to “I personally value exercise and need to do it.)[5]

                  Stage 3: Preparation

                  At this point, the person starts to put a plan in place. This stage is brief, lasting a few weeks. For example, they may book a session with a personal trainer and enrol on a nutrition course.

                  Someone who drinks to excess may make an appointment with a drug and alcohol counsellor; someone with a tendency to overwork themselves might start planning ways to devise a more realistic schedule.

                  Stage 4: Action

                  When they have decided on a plan, the individual must then put it into action. This stage typically lasts for several months. In our example, the person would begin attending the gym regularly and overhauling their diet.

                  Stage 4 is the stage at which the person’s desire for change becomes noticeable to family and friends. However, in truth, the change process began a long time ago. If someone you know seems to have suddenly changed their habits, it’s probably not so sudden after all! They will have progressed through Stages 1-3 first – you probably just didn’t know about it.

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                  Stage 5: Maintenance

                  After a few months in the Action stage, the individual will start to think about how they can maintain their changes, and make lifestyle adjustments accordingly. For instance, someone who has adopted the habit of regular workouts and a better diet will be vigilant against old triggers (such as eating junk food during a stressful time at work) and make a conscious decision to protect their new habits.

                  Unless someone actively engages with Stage 5, their new habits are liable to come unstuck. Someone who has stuck to their new habits for many months – perhaps a year or longer – may enter Stage 6.

                  Maintenance can be challenging because it entails coming up with a new set of habits to lock change in place. For instance, someone who is maintaining their new gym-going habit may have to start improving their budgeting skills in order to continue to afford their gym membership.

                  Stage 6: Termination

                  Not many people reach this stage, which is characterized by a complete commitment to the new habit and a certainty that they will never go back to their old ways. For example, someone may find it hard to imagine giving up their gym routine, and feel ill at the thought of eating junk food on a regular basis.

                  However, for the majority of people, it’s normal to stay in the Maintenance period indefinitely. This is because it takes a long time for a new habit to become so automatic and natural that it sticks forever, with little effort. To use another example, an ex-smoker will often find it hard to resist the temptation to have “just one” cigarette even a year or so after quitting. It can take years for them to truly reach the Termination stage, at which point they are no more likely to smoke than a lifelong non-smoker.

                  How long does each stage take?

                  You should be aware that some people remain in the same stage for months or even years at a time. Understanding this model will help you be more patient with yourself when making a change. If you try to force yourself to jump from Contemplation to Maintenance, you’ll just end up frustrated. On the other hand, if you take a moment to assess where you are in the change process, you can adapt your approach.

                  So if you need to make changes quickly and you are finding it hard to progress to the next stage, it’s probably time to get some professional help or adopt a new approach to forming habits.

                  The limitations of this model

                  The model is best applied when you decide in advance precisely what you want to achieve, and know exactly how you will measure it (e.g. number of times per week you go to the gym, or number of cigarettes smoked per day). Although the model has proven useful for many people, it does have limitations.

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                  Require the ability to set a realistic goal

                  For a start, there are no surefire ways of assessing whereabouts in the process you are – you just have to be honest with yourself and use your own judgement. Second, it assumes that you are physically capable of making a change, whereas in fact you might either need to adjust your goals or seek professional help.

                  If your goal isn’t realistic, it doesn’t matter whether you follow the stages – you still won’t get results. You need to decide for yourself whether your aims are reasonable.[6]

                  Difficult to judge your progress

                  The model also assumes that you are able to objectively measure your own successes and failures, which may not always be the case.[7] For instance, let’s suppose that you are trying to get into the habit of counting calories as part of your weight-loss efforts. However, even though you may think that you are recording your intake properly, you might be over or under-estimating.

                  Research shows that most people think they are getting enough exercise and eating well, but in actual fact aren’t as healthy as they believe. The model doesn’t take this possibility into account, meaning that you could believe yourself to be in the Action stage yet aren’t seeing results. Therefore, if you are serious about making changes, it may be best to get some expert advice so that you can be sure the changes you are making really will make a positive difference.

                  Conclusion

                  The Stages Of Change Model can be a wonderful way to understand change in both yourself and others.

                  While there’re some limitations in it, the Stages of Change Model helps to visualize how you go through changes so you know what to expect when you’re trying to change a habit or make some great changes in life.

                  Start by identifying one of your bad habits. Where are you in the process? What could you do next to move forwards?

                  Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                  Reference

                  [1] Psych Central: Stages Of Change
                  [2] Boston University School Of Public Health: The Transtheoretical Model (Stages Of Change)
                  [3] Empowering Change: Stages of Change
                  [4] Boston University School Of Public Health: The Transtheoretical Model (Stages Of Change)
                  [5] Psychology Today: 5 Steps To Changing Any Behavior
                  [6] The Transtheoretical Model: Limitations Of The Transtheoretical Model
                  [7] Health Education Research: Transtheoretical Model & Stages Of Change: A Critique

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