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You know the saying – opposites attract. Or is the reverse true? That opposites don’t always attract? Does any of this even make sense? Why would you want to be with someone who is completely the opposite of you?

Yes, you can complement each other if you have differences. Your weakness are his strengths, and vice versa. That’s not a bad thing. However, if you find yourselves at total opposite ends of the spectrum on pretty much everything in life, then that is not a recipe for a good, quality relationship.

opposites don't always attract
Photo: Stephanie Liverani / Unsplash

That is why it’s important to understand your personality type as well as that of your partner’s. If you’re single, this can help guide you to find someone that you’re highly compatible with. And even if you’ve been married for years, this information can help you understand each other better. Perhaps you will find that opposites don’t always attract.

The Myers-Briggs Personality Types

If you’ve never heard of the Myers-Briggs Personality types, then check out 16personalities.com and take their test. It will give you a lot of insight into your personality. And it’s bananas how spot-on it is.

Basically, the personality test measures people’s psychological approaches to the world based on eight different dimensions. Unfortunately, we can’t discuss all of them in this short article. So, let’s just focus on one aspect of people’s personalities that most people are familiar with – introverts and extroverts.

Myth About Introverts

You may think you know what introverts and extroverts are like, but you may not know the whole story. Basically, there are some definite myths about these personality types. Let’s take a look at some of them.

Myth: Introverts are anti-social and shy. Many people think that introverts are shy and live like hermits. This couldn’t be farther from the truth! Introverts need people just like extroverts do, but they just socialize much differently.

Truth: Introverts tend to have fewer, more carefully-chosen friends. They don’t want to waste time keeping track of a whole bunch of people that they don’t really find that worthy of their time. And they also like to limit their social time. They don’t want to spend hours and hours on end being with people. And finally, they usually prefer to hang out one-on-one rather in groups.

That’s not to say that the don’t enjoy people, but socializing drains and exhausts them. That’s why they like their alone time. This is the way they re-charge and come back to life.

Myth About Extroverts

Believe it or not, there are actually “gregarious introverts.” They are the kind of introvert who fools you into thinking they are extroverts. They don’t do it on purpose – they are just friendly people. And because they’re friendly, easy to talk to, and perhaps even charismatic, people think that they are an extroverts.

opposites don't always attract
Photo: Brooke Cagle / Unsplash

Myth: Extroverts are the life of the party. If your image of an extrovert is a person who dances on tabletops or bars with a lamp shade on his or her head, well, you’d be wrong. That’s not to say that some don’t do wild things like that. But the average extrovert doesn’t necessarily need to be the center of attention. They do like people, but that doesn’t mean they are all attention-seekers.

Truth: Extroverts do like their alone time too, just not as much as introverts. They don’t mind solitary time. However, given the choice of being locked in a house full of people or a month or being alone, they will choose to be around people almost every time.

You see, if extroverts have too much alone time, it gets them down. They feel under-stimulated, and as a result, get drained and tired. They get energized by being around people and drained by being alone.

And finally, as crazy as it sounds, there is actually a thing as a “shy extrovert.” They’re relatively rare, but they are out there. While extroverts like being around people, “shy extroverts” don’t always feel comfortable going to a big party where they don’t know people. So, don’t just assume that all extroverts are outgoing, loud, and can work the room.

The Takeaway

opposites don't always attract

There is so much more that can be learned about personality types. Of course, there is simply too much to include in one article. So, I encourage you to take the test and figure out what you are. And if you’re married or in a relationship, have your partner take it too. It will shed a lot of light on your differences and help you understand each other better. If you’re single, then keep an eye out for people who seem to be similar to you, if you can. Because opposites don’t always attract!

Feature photo:
Brooke Cagle

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3 COMMENTS

  1. I agree with this completely! Being a psychology graduate myself, it became more and more apparent throughout my undergrad that opposites don’t always attract — which is important for people in the dating scene to realize.

    Great post!! 🙂

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