Do we get shaped by our environment or do we shape our environment?
It’s a balance of both. For instance, our personality is a mixture. It is of our innate tendencies along with the environment that we grow up in.
An ambivert is someone extroverted and introverted. They can be the life of the party or be in the back of the room asking questions and actively listening.
Adam Grant is an organizational psychologist and a professor at the Wharton school of business. He speaks to the “self-chameleon” on his podcast. This is someone who changes to their environment and atmosphere. They know how to act at a funeral or while at a party. They adapt their outlook depending on what the situation is.
Grant advises that we get out of our comfort zone to figure out where our regular fissioning is so that we can re-charge. We need to find our restorative niche to reorient.
This takes some introspection. Why not capture and document what you find into a manual for others. It can show the lay the land on what anyone in the future is getting themselves into within a relationship with you. It acts like a car manual of what it’s like working together on a team. This tool’s takeaway is that traits are flexible. If ignorant, traits can be treated as shackles that close you in. Previous failures are ways that we have acted in the past. They are not the sole definition of who we have to be today.
Psychology is the study of neurons in the brain. A trait of these neurons is to be adaptable— this means to self-monitor. Along with experiences from different narratives, stories shift in your life. Grant concludes that “your personality matters but your ability to adapt matters more”.
In the end, lean into whatever you discover on your path of exploration. Be accepting of whatever you find. Know that it can change depending on your environment like a chameleon.