When I was a kid, my family always saw me as the most confident and outgoing personality in the family. I remember telling stories and last night’s dreams like it was my turn at the Comedy Cellar stage. There was no stopping me from making friends and chasing my goals.
But something started to happen as I got older. I still maintained this image of the funny, happy go lucky entertainer, but I started to realize other art forms I craved like writing, reading, ceramics, and with these art forms I craved solitude.
Only lately have I started to become curious about my personality type as one does in the information age. I learned that I am an introverted extrovert rather than the extrovert I always thought I was.
This information concerned me because I am an aspiring actress and I need to be a people person always and I can’t be a recluse introvert. I decided to ignore my introversion and seriously put myself out there, in auditions, in my job as a waitress, and my social life. I slowly began to feel extremely burnt out and actually angry with the world and my life.
What I soon began to realize is that I cannot ignore my need to be alone.
The strength I see in my craft often comes from recharging my energy and so I devised a plan to maintain a balanced introverted extrovert life:
1. Sleep, studies, social life: pick two
This classic college dilemma remains true for all of adulthood and especially in an introverted extrovert life. If you try too hard to maintain your sleep/health, your career, and your social life all at the same time, you’re going to burn out fast. Try keeping two afloat at once and definitely make sure your health is always a priority. Social life is never an issue for you so just try to give yourself a break every now and then.
2. Think of everything in medicine doses
Just like allowing yourself to sleep eight hours a night, you should allow yourself certain doses of other aspects of your life. For instance, a dose of alone time every day, a dose of socializing once a week, a dose of an artistic assignment, a dose of accomplishing menial tasks, etc. Giving yourself the idea of a dose, encourages you to believe this is how you keep yourself healthy and truly alive.
3. Don’t forget your extroverted self
Once you know you’re an introverted extrovert, you start to think that you need to spend lots of time alone. It is good to be alone occasionally to recharge, but you can’t forget to give yourself that dose of socializing with your amazing friends. You still do love the energy of people and the funny stories they tell so don’t forget you need to be outgoing occasionally.
4. Don’t let your inner voice make you feel bad for being shy sometimes
If you’re anything like me, I always have these great ideas in my head of how a person to person interaction could go and then I usually chicken out and sink into myself, upset that my introverted tendencies took over my extroverted desires. Life isn’t perfect, and you aren’t ever going to be that perfect person you envision. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself and just be as confident as you can be.
You’re not always going to win in the introverted extrovert battle, but you can have fun in being the incredibly unique person you are and will always be.