I have had an epiphany ! I just read an article in Somerset Studio magazine about introverts & extroverts ... and I get it !! I have always struggled with what seems like an outgoing social personality but I felt like I was an impostor. I have always worked in jobs that involved communicating IN ABUNDANCE !! And it was fine. I often had to attend social events, mingling, chatting, and doing presentations. I did. Everyone assumed I was actually that person. I even did. But I couldn't understand my feeling of dread about going to a wedding or some event that was supposed to be fun. Even lunch with a friend. What was wrong with me ?? I always enjoyed the lunches or events once I actually got there ... but the days ahead were filled with excuses and dread. I was ashamed of myself for feeling that way. I would be a part of a committee or group because I believed so dearly in the cause ... and then I would drag my feet to meetings. I would ask for tasks that I could take home to complete.I didn't want to be part of the group ... but I really wanted to help. I avoided group crafting activities ... I never did a thing at them !! I couldn't make anything ... no ideas. All I could think about was going home & making things. Yet, I could teach classes. Strange.
So the article explains this whole thing !!! Written by Quinn McDonald, it uses the research done by the Myers and Briggs Foundation. Quinn says that "introverts are people who get their energy in the inner world of ideas and images. They spend time in the outside world interacting with people, but it tires them out. They refresh themselves best by being alone." Quinn goes on to say that "the big difference between the two (extro & intro ) is the direction of the energy flow. Extroverts get energy from crowds: introverts feel drained by crowds." BINGO !!
I actually felt like I made sense after reading that !! I always look forward to being alone ... and would chose that over any social activity. And by being alone, I also mean being with my husband. We are so much alike that I feel just as comfortable with him as I do by myself. And we tend to always stay home and avoid social situations. I am sure some people look at us with pity ... no social life ... but it really is how we are happiest.
I looked at friendships that didn't work, vacations, family situations ... it all made sense !!
*I realize now that I don't feel the need to have really close friends to do all sorts of things with ... I am somewhat intimidated by that. Any time I have a full-on friend, I end up feeling like I am being swallowed alive ... I need my space. I end up disappointing extrovert friends because I can only keep up that pace for a short time. I quickly tire of going out & doing things. And the friendship wanes.
* I noticed that most of those who commented on a facebook post that they too were introverts were people I really really liked. I think I see a similarity in them and I do not feel intimidated. I know that we could be good friends because we wouldn't expect great social things from each other. LOL. An introverts version of friendship would seem to others to be much more casual, far less intense, much quieter, and probably not very exciting but the bonds are just as real.
* vacations ... the vacations that everyone loves scare me !! The cruise ships, resorts, etc ... scary stuff !! Group vacations ... I cringe at the idea. My ideal vacation is just my beloved and I ... off on our own, exploring. We love big cities but I think that's because you are truly alone there. There may be loads of people but they aren't looking at me ... they too are in their own little worlds.
* family ... I come from a small family . A quiet family. I always THOUGHT I wanted to be part of a big Hallmark family ... oops, nope. Too many big family dinners, family activities and expectations and I am once again running for my rabbit hole. I enjoy the occasional big family dinner but then I need a whole month of Sunday dinners at home .
This has always made me feel a bit mean, selfish maybe, and very anti-social. I realize now that it is just who I am & how I function and fuel myself. And that there are lots more out there like me. And that we need both types of people on this great big glorious earth !!!
Long live the introverts ... too bad we will never have a convention or national day of parades !!! LOL !!!!