Hello my name is Linda and I’m an introvert.
Those of you who know me personally probably guessed.
Or you think I’m a snob.
Or you think I don’t like you.
Or you think I’m ignorant, boring and have nothing to add to a conversation.
Nope. I’m just an introvert. And on a Myers Briggs scale, I am at the far end of the introvert spectrum, like ready to plunge off the introvert cliff.
“We stop and take time to smell the roses”
“We look before we leap”
“We intrigue people”
OK, that makes introverts sound cool. But for a blogger in social media, it’s tough to be… well… SOCIAL. I think that’s why I got online in the first place. You can hide behind an avatar. And you can think before you speak. It’s one place I can live out my extrovert wishes and fantasies and be something I’m not. But I’m still an introvert to the core and blogger life doesn’t always jive.
At conferences I sit to the side (or sit in my room) and awkwardly pretend we should know each other (although I know we have or haven’t met) or convince myself we don’t want or need to meet (although I really want to meet you and be your bestie) or we talked earlier so there’s nothing left to say (except that I have a ton of questions for you that I’m sure you don’t want to answer).
When a group of us are out to dinner, I sit on the end, so there’s no awkward “who do I talk to” question. I’ve limited my choices. And I’m going to go to the bathroom at least twice.
OK, that’s maybe because I’m over 50, but I’d still go a couple of times just to get away.
I live behind a computer and I can come out whenever I want… or not. I don’t have to entertain anyone and I don’t have to engage anyone. But I AM online so it’s what I do.
You extroverts AND THERE ARE SO MANY OF YOU are like the spray and pray machine gun. You fire your ideas and comments and conversations one after the freaking other, always coming up with something to say or do and you never seem to wear yourself out. We introverts are the subatomic missiles. We plan and plan again and re-plan and make sure our aim is spot on before we push the red button… and then we collapse in exhaustion because all that thinking and planning (and to be honest your machine gunning) has worn us out – completely.
Still, we’re both hitting the target.
Here’s the thing. I want to be the extrovert. I really do. Being an introvert feels limiting. It’s scary. And it feels not normal – unnatural – when you place me next to an extrovert. I walk into every social situation wishing that a switch would flick, fairy dust would be sprayed, and that I’d be cloaked in “extroversia”.
Author Susan Cain makes a good case for living a fulfilled introvert life.
“Don’t think of introversion as something that needs to be cured…Spend your free time the way you like, not the way you think you’re supposed to.”
I know, I know – it makes sense. But if you find an extra extroversia cloak laying around, let me know.