What Exactly is an Introvert?
"Contrary to what most people think, an introvert is not simply a shy person. An introvert can be shy, but introversion is not shyness.
An introvert is a person who is energized by being alone and whose energy is drained by being around other people." (About.com)
"Introverts make up 60% of the "gifted population", but only 25-40% of the general population." (About .com)
Introvert: to turn inward or in upon itself as;
1. to concentrate on or direct upon oneself
2. to produce psychological introversion
Using an article from the Huffington Post... I'll talk about my personal view on being an Introvert:
23 Signs that You are an Introvert
By: Carolyn Gregorie
1. You find small talk incredibly cumbersome.
* I truly can't stand small talk. I feel like it's a waste of time and air and I get really annoyed by it.
2. You go to parties, but not to meet people.
*I only want to go to parties if I know someone that I want to spend time with is there. Meeting new people is awesome when it happens, but that's never why I would go to a party. Again, that involves small talk and idle chatter and I hate it. So, if I go to your party filled with strangers, I'm more than likely going to be a wallflower.
3.You often feel alone in a crowd.
* Yes, Yes and Yes. I can be surrounded at school and work with a large group of people and totally feel like I'm by myself. Example: I like to go to coffee shops to read books, not to interact with people, but just to get out. I'm relaxed and feel like I'm by myself in my own little world.
4. Networking makes you feel like a phony.
* I dated a guy who would go to events not to interact with friends, but he would go there with "networking" in mind. I hate that!!!! I like a lot of that to happen organically. Yes, I do art shows and events like that, but for the most part I like to make stuff while I'm there and let people see what I do and meet people that way rather than just handing someone a business card and telling them to check out my stuff.
At shows, if you asked my friends they would say, I make a "home" at these types of events. I create a space that is comfortable for me so that when people do come around I don't feel like I've been put in an uncomfortable or unfamiliar situation.
5.You've been called "too intense".
*I have been called this before... I am very analytical and also very passionate so that can come off as being too intense. I'm especially like this when I do group projects because I'm very disciplined when it comes to making sure that whatever I work on is up to my standards, especially if my name is going to be on something.
6. You're easily distracted.
* Yes, this is true. I am a creative person who has tons of ideas and things that I want to make happen. I could be researching for one project and then go on a tangent with another idea and start taking notes on that, but I always come back to my original intent.
7. Downtime doesn't feel unproductive to you.
* I HAVE to have downtime. I go to school and entertain clients all day and then I go to work in another service industry where I serve tables and interact with my co-workers. I do this 4-5 days a week in a row and by then end of that time I am burnt out. If I don't get a break I get stressed, overwhelmed and I even breakdown and cry sometimes. On those special days when I do get time to myself, I treat myself by sleeping in, writing down ideas in my notebooks, spending time with my dog and getting stuff done around the house.
8. Giving a talk in front of 500 people is less stressful than having to mingle with those people afterwards.
*I used to hate public speaking, but now I would rather do that. If I'm fully prepared for the talk that I'm giving, it won't really bother me as much as if I'm not prepared. So when I have to do those sort of talks, I practice and practice and practice some more. Interacting with the people afterwards, not my cup of tea.... there is a lot of hand shaking (I'm a bit of a germaphobe), small talking and that part is the most draining for me. So, if I seem rude... I'm not trying to be.
9. When you get on the subway you sit at the outside.
* I don't like to feel trapped when I'm on public transportation. I have to sit on the outside, close to the exit and I don't like to sit close to strangers.
10. You start to break down after you've been active too long.
* This goes back to #7.... I've overdone it quite a few times before and the aftermath is not pretty. I get snappy and irritable, sometimes I have panic attacks, and if it builds up too much then I'll break down and cry. (Selfish ) I've done full months where I'm constantly going and then have to take long periods where I just disappear off the face of the earth for most people.
11. You're in a relationship with an extrovert.
*My boyfriend will be an introvert at times, but he loves to have people around. He comes from a big family and so that is very normal for him. When we first started dating, we were always hanging out in groups with friends and that was totally out of the norm for me... He might not think that he's an extrovert, but he is.
12. You'd rather be an expert at one thing than try to do everything.
* It might seem like I can and do everything, but in reality I see a connection to all of the things that I do. I have a Bachelor in Fine Arts with a concentration in Painting and Drawing, but I do a lot of printmaking, papermaking, sewing and more. To me everything I do connects to making an idea turn into reality.... I can see things in my head and then I figure out the best way to make it come to life. I have a love for knowledge and challenging things, so everything connects to something else.... It's all relative....
13. You actively avoid any shows that might involve audience participation.
* The best example of this for me is when you have your first day of class or a first group meeting and they make you stand up and tell everyone who you are and what you do and why you're here..... I can't stand that... Another one is when I took a Yoga class they made us partner up for some exercises and I was screaming on the inside the entire time....
14. You screen all of your calls... even from your friends.
* Yes I am very guilty of this.... but it goes all the way back to hating small talk.... I really hate talking on the phone..... But, if you call and I don't answer and then you text me to call you, that lets me know that it's important and I'll call back immediately or if you leave me a voice message I'll more than likely call you back.... I also hate having a long conversation in text too..... So try not to get offended by it....
15. You notice details that others don't.
* I notice a lot..... People think that I'm too quiet sometimes, but really I'm observing, observing people, surroundings, and listening to what people are saying..... Same thing when I watch movies... I'll notice the makeup, costumes, things going on in the background while still listening and paying attention to the plot.... I notice little things too....
16. You have a constant inner monologue.
* That 40 minute drive to and from school is proof of this..... I talk to myself all the way home.... not in a crazy way, but it's a way for me to work things out of my head and they say that you remember more of what You say out loud than if you keep it just rolling in your head.... If I have downtime at work.... things that are in the background in my head will come to the front.... so I try to stay busy until I leave.......
17. You have low blood pressure.
* High blood pressure and hypertension run in my family..... Usually when I get mine checked I have the blood pressure of a dead person..... I try to keep myself from being stressed and a lot of that is taken care of when I get that time to myself....
18. You've been called an "old soul" since before your 20's.
* Yes, I have always been told that I'm an old soul... from my taste in music, books, history, work ethic etc.... Previously, I had only dated men that were at least 9-10 years older than me....
19. You don't feel "high" from your surroundings.
* I get excited and "high" at the anticipation stage........ Like road trips.... but after being out and around so many people I'm totally drained.....
20. You look at the big picture.
* I learned growing up to focus on the solution vs. the problem..... Problem Solving, Troubleshooting, those are what I focus on..... with that said I look at things from a lot of different views instead of just one...... I hypothesize......
21.You've been told to "come out of your shell".
*I get told this at local concerts.... I love dancing and singing and all of those things, but I distracted by all of the people around me..... so letting go takes a bit of time.....
22. You are a writer.
* Part of the reason that I started blogging was so that I could get stuff out.... and blogging allows that on a bigger scale.... It's more public than internalizing in a journal.... and I get to talk without feeling like I'm boring the hell out of someone or taking up too much of their time....
23. You alternate between phases of work, periods of social activity, and solitude.
* Yes Yes and Yes.... My brother can attest to this... he laughs and pokes fun at the fact that I'll have a period where I'll go out all of the time to do things and then turn into a "hermit". Like right now.... I've gone months without seeing friends and it's not that I don't want to or don't care about these people.... it's just that I need that down time from work, school, etc....
I watched this Awesome episode of TED that really hits on a lot of what I've just talked to you about.... I hope you Enjoy this....
TED: Susan Cain: The Power of Introverts