I was thinking about extroverts and introverts recently because I'd heard about this book called Quiet, The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking. I don't know what I am. I think of an extrovert as someone who walks into a room, opens his arms wide, yells out Hello Everyone! and suddenly the room turns into a stadium of 50,000 screaming, cheering fans, chanting his name. The introvert is the little guy who shuffles in behind him, says hi quietly with a shy wave, then with his head down walks over to the wall. I know, I know, those are extremes, and there are variations and combinations in between, but there are also versions that appear to be one thing and then are really another; so it's confusing. In trying to figure out my own type, I looked at a few general categories I belong to:
Ok, this seems obvious: Americans are extroverts, back slapping, fuck yeah kind of people, but even though I would never really define myself as "American", I've realized from hanging out with people who are not, that I am. I've been told, politely and with love, that I am vulgar and loud. This is because I tend to talk about things that are inappropriate, I don't wait my turn to speak and I yell from one room to the next. And I'm not embarrassed about it! But I'm not self righteous and it's not hard for me to say I'm sorry when I've done something wrong (which is a good thing since I have to say it a lot) and I'm very quiet most of the time.
Again, this seems obvious: Shy people are introverts. I don't go out much. If I do, I prefer hanging out with children or else talking with the one person I know. I'll push myself to make an effort but I find I quickly run out of things to say. Still, if I'm in a group and there's an opportunity to stand up and say something to everyone, I will be the first to grab the mike. And if I'm at a Chippendales show with my sisters and one of the Chips pulls me on stage to dance: I WILL.
I am alone most of the time which would seem to automatically qualify me as an introverted, but one of the definitions of an introvert is that he is energized by being alone. This can happen to me periodically but more often than not, my time alone is spent wasting time, and then being depressed about it.
Both Parents are Actors
If both of your parents are extroverts, then you are automatically the opposite, (until you are old enough to realize, with horror, that you are exactly the same) but just because they are actors, does not mean they are extroverted. My mom actually does get completely energized when she spends time alone and my dad would rather be in a cluttered trailer in the desert than at a party.
I think I'm a little of both. What are you?