I'm An Ambivert

April was crazy busy! We went to five kid birthday parties, four egg hunts, and spent time with our families on Easter. We went to a STEM event, planted our garden, and attended the last Silvertips hockey game of the season. I had fun going to two Mariners games and driving to Portland to see Garth Brooks. I volunteered in Nolan's class twice a week all month long, had friends visit from California, attended a gardening class, went on a couple lunch dates, and babysat my nephews. I also went to Urgent Care, the dentist for a cleaning, and squeezed in a manicure. 

The first few days of May have been just as busy with a trip to a museum, babysitting my nephews, going to a movie, and seeing The Phantom of the Opera. I also have a concert and comedian to go see this month. I'll probably make it to a couple Mariners games and I want to see at least five more movies. I'm scheduled to babysit my nephews again, I have a hair cut and color appointment, and a mani/pedi booked. I took on a big project for Nolan's teacher, Milo's last day of preschool is May 22, and I have two book club meetings.

Waah waah waah, right? I hear the world's smallest violin too. My life is far from hard, I know that. I'm typically happy being active and love having fun upcoming plans, but a few times a year I hit a wall. I want to cancel on everyone and everything and climb in bed for a few weeks, not because I'm sad, but because I need to recharge. I always end up going and having a great time, but up until the moment I leave the house, I think about staying in with Netflix. I never thought of myself as an introvert, but in my old age I've become a homebody, and when I don't get enough downtime I feel overwhelmed and anxious.

I read up on it and did a few online surveys and realized I'm an ambivert. I strike a balance between extroversion and introversion and slide up and down the spectrum depending on the situation or people. Here are characteristics of an ambivert:

  • Enjoys socializing, but also being alone at times
  • Behavioral decisions usually rely on how one feels, or the context of the situation
  • Usually has a small group of friends
  • Flexible
  • Ability to appreciate both inner and outer worlds
  • Easygoing

Sounds about right. Each test placed me as a high ambivert or low extrovert. It's the "inner world" thing that keeps me far from being an introvert. I don't need time alone to think and process, I just want it to read and watch TV in my pjs. I'm also not drained when hanging out with people, I get energized. I know for sure I'm not the extrovert I was in my late teens and twenties though. Looking back I'm a little embarrassed about how outgoing, ballsy, and loud I was.

The thing is, we all got a cold again last week (our third one in seven weeks, I'm not even joking) and I know I'm not taking care of myself or getting enough sleep. Being on the go all the time is not helping. To top it off, I miss my husband! He's been working overtime again and he's training for an MMA fight in June. (Ugh. You can read my thoughts on that right here.) He hasn't fought in a few years so he's got some work to do and he is committed to it. Thankfully he can fit in some workouts when he takes the kids to swimming lessons twice a week, but the other five nights are spent at his gym or in our garage where he's got some kettlebell system going on. So lately when I leave for something fun, I kinda wish I could just stay home and hang with him. We end up catching up when I get back and we're up till 1:00 am.

So, long story short, I'm going to say no to anything else that comes my way for a while. I already said no to dinner with friends next week. I just need some time to do nothing for a while. And on the few nights Jacob is home, we'll cuddle up with a movie and go to bed at 9:30.

Are you and introvert, extrovert, or ambivert?
How do you deal when you feel overwhelmed and overbooked?


SMD @ lifeaccordingtosteph said...

I can identify with ambiverts, but the thing that marks me mainly as an introvert is being drained by social situations. I need alone time after to recharge, which I typically do by reading, watching TV, cooking or cleaning. I love being by myself.

Good for you for saying no! Too many people say yes to everything. I hate when I've overscheduled myself.

Jana @ Jana Says said...

I love saying no to things. I feel no obligations to anyone except myself and my immediate family.

I mostly identify as an introvert but if my depression is in check, I think I'm more of an ambivert.

Karen M. Peterson said...

An ambivert, huh? I'd never heard that term, but I think it describes me too. I don't really feel like an extrovert, but I'm not exactly an introvert either.

I hope you all get better quick! Being sick is stupid!

Misty, Handbags + Handguns said...

I didn't know it had a name, but this is definitely me too.

Micah said...

I'm definitely more of an introvert -- I need that time alone to think and process and social situations are very draining.

Jo-Anne's Ramblings said...

I have never heard of an ambivert anyone it doesn't sound like me at all so doesn't matter that I have not heard of the term