This week my brother Bill gave the Sibling Assignment. Here is our task:
Write about yourself as an introvert. You can do with this whatever you want. Discuss what it means, tell about your experience, or anything else.
My brother's post is here, and my sister's post is here.
I have always been classified as an Extrovert. Here are some attributes of an Extrovert:
Extroverts are social beings always on the look out for excitement. They are outgoing and do not hesitate to assert their needs. They are predominantly occupied with activities ‘outside the self’ and crave for human interactions. Extroverts are essentially talkative, sociable and enthusiastic in dealing with people in general. They love to take initiative and plunge into action. They can make friends easily and often adapt to new environments without any problem. Extroverts are open and do not hesitate to share their thoughts with others. It is easier to get to know an extrovert as they do not hesitate to lay bare their feelings and thoughts.
I have many of these attributes, and have most of my life.
But I have noticed, as I get older, I am becoming more introverted. Here are the attributes of an introvert:
Introverts are more concerned with the inner world of the mind. They enjoy thinking, exploring their thoughts and feelings. They often avoid social situations because being around people drains their energy. This is true even if they have good social skills. After being with people for any length of time, such as at a party, they need time alone to "recharge."
I find myself wanting and needed my alone time more. If I don't have this time, my energy becomes depleted. And each social situation does not energize me. It depends on the people with whom I am socializing. If I am with people I'm comfortable with, and enjoy their company, I am energized. If not, it can be very draining. I find if I go for a time without spending time alone to think and contemplate, I lose my energy. So there has definitely been a shift in my life.
There was a time when I didn't want to be away from a group of people who were having a conversation for fear I would miss something. That is not as important anymore. In fact, now I often go away and perhaps hide in the kitchen to work to avoid people for a while.
I remember taking the Meyers Briggs personality test, and I always came out strong Extrovert. But I would be curious to take it again, and see the results. I believe I would still be an Extrovert, but the result would show me with a higher Introvert rating.
It is interesting how your personality and way of interacting with the world can change. I still will walk down the street and say hello to strangers much easier than my very introverted husband. But I do need more time alone to do the things I need to do....to recharge....to evaluate the way I spend my time.
In my immediate family, my husband and middle daughter very introverted. My oldest daughter is closer to a split between introvert and extrovert. My youngest daughter and myself are extroverts. Because we all perform people think we must be extroverts. But that is not the case. I have seen my husband play a role and schmooze a room with the best of them, because he was playing a part. But a couple of weeks later, he was a nervous wreck at a graduation party we attended, because he dreaded the small talk and chit chat that he may have to do at that gathering.
My brother is an Introvert, and I believe my sister is becoming more introverted, but was probably at one time a stronger Extrovert.
I am thankful for my leaning toward more introversion, because I believe it is helping me slow down, and look at things more clearly, and make more thoughtful and though out decisions. I am not always on the go.
And I hope I continue to use this alone time to give me energy for the things I want and need to do in my life.