There’s been a lot of talk in the last few years about people who are introverts and people who are extroverts and what those terms actually mean in the context of how these kinds of people look at the world. In the midst of reading all the articles, I’ve realized something. I’m an introvert. I’m not just quiet or shy. I’m an introvert, and I’m going to give you a glimpse inside of my world in today’s post.
But, first, I guess I should define what introvert and extrovert mean so I can give you a context of what I mean. First, here is what extrovert means. Giftedkids.about.com defines an extrovert as being “a person who is energized by being around other people” while an introvert is “energized by being alone and whose energy is drained by being around other people.”
When I was growing up, I was often accused of being quiet and shy even though I had relationships with people. I heard those words so often that I internalized them and grew into adulthood thinking I was quiet and shy. It didn’t help that we moved often when I was a child and I had to abandon relationships when I didn’t want to.
After I married and had my children, the moving around continued. Due to circumstances in my life which resulted in leaving the church for a period of time, I didn’t have many close relationships, and my internalization of being a shy and quiet person continued. By the time we moved here, I wanted community badly, wanted close relationships badly, but didn’t know how to go about getting them. Fortunately, we found the church we now attend, and I’ve been able to form some close relationships.
It has been in the last three years though that I’ve made this discovery of being an introvert, and it makes me wonder if I’ll be able to keep the relationships I’ve been able to form. I’m not the person who likes to stay up until midnight at a ladies retreat. I’m the person who hangs at the back of the crowd until she feels comfortable enough to plunge in. When I walk around a crowd and talk to people, it wears me out, sometimes to the point of having to rest the next day. I like to talk about things that are deep and not trivial and sometimes they’re not things other women are interested in. In fact, I’ll be honest and say other women intimidate me sometimes, even women I know well. I have this tape playing in my head that I’ll never measure up because I feel so different. I want to measure up though. I want to have relationships. I just need people to understand the world I inhabit, the world of an introvert.
Have a great day!