There's Nothing Wrong with You-- Maybe You're Just an Introvert

How do you know if you're an introvert?

Do you tire more quickly than others in noisy, busy environments? Would you rather read a book, write, draw, or do another solitary activity instead of going to a social function? Are you never bored when you're alone?

If you answered "yes" to any of those questions, you could be an introvert. If you're curious, you can take The Quiet Revolution Personality Test to see if its true.

Art studio of Artist David Borden. An introvert paradise
David Borden's Fortress of Solitude: the Studio
During my Year of the Phoenix (which has really continued much longer) I realized some things that some of you will say "duh" over, and some of you will say, "I had no idea." I've learned that I'm an introvert, but that I cover it up really well. I've learned to adapt and project extroversion when I need to, though it's very exhausting. A friend of mine in college once gave his assessment of me:

"You're a Type A trapped in a Type B."

I used to think I was just anti-social because there's so much stigma associated with introversion. In fact, not long ago the American Psychological Association considered listing introversion as a pathology. No wonder, so many of us felt out of place in extrovert-favoring American culture.
quiet solitary places, such as this deserted creek is a wonderful spot for an introvert to sped all day
I love places like this

The signs you might be an introvert:

  1. You don't like parties or other large social gatherings.
  2. Discomfort with small talk
  3. Having a terrible aversion to networking because it feels so phony
  4. Craving solitude and time alone
  5. A dislike of telephones because you feel if you call someone you'd be bugging them.
  6. Noticing connections others overlook
  7. Being called "an old soul" by people, even when you are relatively young
  8. A love of abstract ideas and the big picture
  9. You like to spend most of your time writing, reading, creating, or doing other activities that require being alone
  10. You don't get excited by group activities, such as cheering at sporting events, awards ceremonies, or participating in pep rallies of any kind.
I know what you're thinking. You're thinking I'm not an introvert-- I'm a curmudgeon. Nothing could be further from the truth. Curmudgeony behavior stems from one of two possible origins: 1) Misanthropy 2) Introversion. I'm not a hater of my fellow human beings, so 1) is not accurate for me. I do believe that introverts are often labelled as misanthropes, though. I remember a football coach coming to me in the locker room when I played JV. He was very serious and very concerned. 
He said, "Borden, do you even like playing? You don't jump up and down and cheer and get excited like the other boys."

I replied, "Do I get my job done?"

He said, "Yes. I have no complaints about how you play."

"So, what exactly is the problem?"

"You don't get excited."

"I'll try harder." I lied.

"Good to hear it," the coach said, and walked off, having restored order... Though, I must go on the record. I didn't start "high-fiving" or do any butt-slapping. 

Our culture rewards the loudest and most social. In fact, an increasing number of people seem to make a living by simply being public extroverts. What about the rest of us? The introverts who wonder why talking a lot is considered as a virtue? Take heart. You're not alone... (that's a joke, you see, because in all likelihood, you enjoy being alone.)

If you liked this article, learn more about how to use being an introvert as a strength. 
Phoenix rising from artist and phoenix, David Borden
Click to read more about the Year of the Phoenix

#introvert #introverts #introversion #extrovert #personality #happiness #misfit #outsider #shy


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