Revenge of the Introverts

Last month, I went on a great big blogger meetup, in a city far, far away. On top of some amazing experiences with some awesome people, this allowed for one big thing: lots of alone time waiting in airports. I’m usually the sort of person to get bored rather easily – usually demonstrated in any attempt at physical exercise – so my first stop was to the newsagent’s, to stock up on magazines. Secretly, I kind of enjoyed being dressed up in ruffles, rosettes and accessories for once (first impressions, people!) and purchasing a pile of science, technology and psychology magazines, and I spent the remainder of my solitude reading them cover to cover. That’s the great thing about these sorts of magazines – the popular ones are half filled with ads for products you don’t care about, gossip about celebrities you don’t care about, and recycled articles on the same old beauty techniques, weight loss, and sex tips used in every issue of archives past, tweaked for wording and wrapped in a different package to give the impression of fresh material.  Okay for flicking through for ten minutes in a waiting room, perhaps, but not for four hours sans company or entertainment.

These magazines are great for really reading fully, cover to cover, full of interesting facts and insights. I learned about holograms, peak moments in life, technological advances, and even forgiveness after death, but the most interesting thing to catch my attention was an article entitled Revenge of the Introverts. It was the cover story: a picture of a brunette girl, hiding behind her hair, with my eternal inner monologue pasted over her face. How to Thrive in an Extraverted World. Doesn’t this just encapsulate everything I’ve tried to do this year?? This seemed to be a story written for me to read, so of course I had to pick it up.

It was a long article, but it was absolutely fascinating. Written by a therapist, it opened with a confession: the author loved the study of psychology, but hated dealing with people all day long.  “I was perpetually overstimulated, busy decoding everything I took in. Plus, I wondered why I couldn’t tolerate the large caseloads my colleagues took on willingly.”  This is so true for me – I love education, as well as the idea of helping to educate others – but being continually around or in front of people is exhausting and anxiety-inducing, rather than stimulating. At the end of the day I love nothing more than shutting my office door and putting my favourite radio station on – retreating into my own little world.  I’m normal! my brain rejoiced, as it continued to digest the story.

There are plenty of introverts around. It’s just that perceptual biases lead us all to overestimate the number of extraverts among us (they are noisier and hog the spotlight). Often confused with shyness, introversion does not imply social reticence or discomfort. Rather than being averse to social engagement, introverts become overwhelmed by too much of it, which explains why the introvert is ready to leave a party after an hour and the extravert gains steam as the night goes on.

This doesn’t mean us introverts are shy. This means that unlike extraverts, we get our energy from alone time, and too much exposure to people is actually draining. Introverts are collectors of thought. Extraverts are collectors of socialisation. What surprised me, was that according to a national US study, introverts make up 50% of the population. So why does it seem we’re vastly outnumbered by extraverts? The answer could be cultural. “Like individuals,” the article stated, “cultures have different styles. America is a noisy culture, unlike, say, Finland, which values silence. Individualism, dominant in the U.S., promotes the direct, fast-paced style of communication associated with extraversion. Collectivistic societies, such as those in East Asia, value privacy and restraint, qualities more characteristic of introverts.”  But if every other person is an introvert, why doesn’t our cultural tone seem to reflect that?

It’s not just that we overestimate the numbers of extraverts in our midst because they’re more salient. The bias of individuals is reinforced in the media, which emphasize the visual, the talkative, and the sound bite— immediacy over reflection.  “In verbal cultures, remaining silent presents a problem,” reports a study of communication styles in the U.S. and Finland. Perceptions of competence tend to be based on verbal behaviour. An introvert who is silent in a group may actually be quite engaged—taking in what is said, thinking about it, waiting for a turn to speak—but will be seen in the U.S. as a poor communicator.

Is this why I’ve struggled to much with public speaking? Is this why it remains one of the highest ranked fears across the nation – because we’re conditioned to believe that extraversion equals competence and, subsequently, success? Is this why, for years, I believed I wasn’t really worthy of deep relationships and meaningful friendships, because I wasn’t a big speaker, not really good at improvisation or making jokes, or even thinking on the spot to answer simple questions like “how are you?”

Conversation between an introvert and an extravert can involve a series of misunderstandings. As the introvert struggles to follow multiple conversational threads and sort out his own thoughts, he remains quiet and appears to be just listening. The extravert reads that as engagement, a cue to keep talking. The introvert struggles with the continuing flow of input and soon starts to shut out the extravert, while nodding or smiling, or even trying to stop the exchange. Rather than simply answering the  question, an internal dialogue begins, in which the introvert “hears” themself talking internally as the other person speaks.

Even if the introvert responds, “I’m good,” they’re probably still internally reflecting on how they really are. They may evaluate their thoughts and judgment about the day, and even the question itself, wondering why we revert to “good” just because that’s the question, or if the other person even really wants to know. The cognitive load becomes increasingly difficult to manage, as the internal talk competes with the external conversation.  Moreover, while trying to keep the conversation going, introverts may miss social cues, which can  make them appear socially inept. The conversation is also anxiety-provoking, because the introvert feels they have too little time to share a complete thought. They hunger to pull away and give time to the thoughts their brain has generated.

How fascinating is this? A scientifically researched argument for all my years of self-questioning actually being normal enough to constitute half the population. One thing I love about the blogging world is that, contrary perhaps to day-to-day existence, there seem to be a copious amount of introverts. According to the Myers-Briggs personality test (of which I’m a massive fan), my type is supposed to be the rarest of them all. Yet in discussions with other bloggers, I’ve found a good number of people whose type is just like my own. Perhaps, as collectors of thought and lovers of solitude, it provides a safe sense of community where we’re free to take all the time we need to construct our ideas and responses, from the safety of our own isolation. In the blogosphere, we can be successful social communicators and contributors, unaffected by the interruptions, fast pace and expectations of external society.  And perhaps this realisation is just what we need in order to give ourselves a bit of a break once in a while, and embrace who we are in our own skin. It seems we’re not such aliens in our own world after all.

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64 comments

  1. Wow! What a fantastic article. This makes me feel so much better 🙂 we’re after all more the norm than society wants to make us believe.

    Thanks for sharing this, Em.

  2. I’m right there with you, girl. You and I exploring Wormhole Coffee together in Chicago – AWESOME. The two of us going to a big ol’ party with 58 people we don’t know – AWFUL.

    I’m socially capable in groups, but I don’t enjoy it a whole lot most of the time, unless it’s with people that I know pretty well. And I like to hole up in my cave with the Leave Me Alone hat on and just work on stuff. 🙂

    1. I think the “leave me alone” hat is a pretty perfect “introvert” advertisement lol! I have definitely become more aware of my discomfort in big groups lately, but it’s also kind of empowering knowing that’s NORMAL and it’s not because I’m awkward or socially inept, it’s just because I’m wired with a need for smaller, more private social interactions with people who understand I need a bit of time to formulate conversation rather than just being thrust into a group of strangers and expected to “perform”. 🙂

  3. Hi Emily,

    This is a great post! The article is spot on and the fears you struggle with are the same as my own. Coming from an Asian society, it is true that we value privacy and restraint more. But the more successful ones have learned to pick up the extraverted qualities of the West.

    I recall my encounters with an extraverted friend of mine. She speaks like a bullet train and rattles off on many different tangents. The first time I met her years ago, I felt totally overwhelmed, as if the said train had rolled all over me. I had a hard time keeping up or even finding the right things to say. When I patted myself on the back with a well-crafted response, before I could deliver it, I found that the conversation had progressed far and beyond. Nowadays it’s not so bad for me, but it is still hard for me to get a word in at times. The pace however is just as relentless. The only difference is that I am used to it. 😛

    With close friends who I feel comfortable with, I tend to be more relaxed and open. But with strangers or in group settings, which I dislike, I tend to be more quiet. In work, my colleagues always comment that I am the quiet one. I also find it hard to make small talk because I am not good at belaboring the mundane. Thus it is great to see research done to show us introverts that we are not, as you say, alien.

    It is true that it is easier for me to expound on my ideas online behind the safety of my screen. I have more time to think through what I want to say and how to say it.

    Thanks for sharing this great post!

    1. I have always been told throughout growing up, that I come across as “quiet” or “shy” yet when I am in small groups of good friends I am usually the most open and “extraverted” – I guess as a result of building relationships with those I feel understand and ‘get’ me, I can naturally feel comfortable being myself. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  4. Self-proclaimed extrovert here (spelling is different in international English?), and this actually speaks to and explains all of the introverted friends I’ve made in the blogosphere. In fact, if it weren’t for blogs, I probably wouldn’t have known these people. Here’s to that.

    Is there a permalink to this article maybe?

    1. I always thought it was “extrovert” too until I read the article, saw “extravert” and looked it up – apparently both are right though. 🙂 I’ll e-mail you the link to the article!

    2. Definitely. I’m totally an introvert and love the friends that blogging has made me. Like Nico said, I probably wouldn’t be friends with many of them if it weren’t for my blog.

  5. Indeed, there seem to be a disproportionate amount of introverted bloggers around. I’m one of them. I think the net offers the ideal medium for us to express ourselves, on our own terms, in our own times.

    I often get quite a high after having had a great time out with friends….but I much prefer alone time. I can’t imagine living with a friend, for example…apart from T there is nobody’s company I could tolerate around the clock. I’ve never had a best girlfriend who I was joined at the hip to and did everything with. I love the idea of it, but it’s really not my style.

  6. I am SUCH an introvert, and to top it off, I’m a teacher. This means that I get the life sucked right out of me each and every day. It used to be exhausting to teach, but now I know to take my prep periods in silence and recharge by doing individual activities after work.

    1. I think D is the same way! I know he loves education but he’s close to me in that he’s an INTJ, and scored EXTREMELY on the scale of introversion where I am only “slightly” so I think I have more tendencies of both sides. I remember hearing about how draining his days were teaching sometimes and now it makes complete sense!

  7. Thanks so much for posting this, Emily! I’m one of those people who sits quiet in a large group just taking it all in…I’m not shy…just overwhelmed with the hubbub! However, I have no difficulty with public speaking, thanks to training in broadcast journalism.

    I think I blog because it’s my way of “getting a word in edgewise” without being interrupted or overshadowed by the extroverts!

    Wendy

    1. Thanks for reading! I wish I’d taken training in something that may have forced me to be a little more comfortable being in the spotlight, but it’s comforting to know there’s a reason behind the panic 🙂

  8. fantastic post em. really interesting point about us living in a ‘noisier culture’ where it seems more normal to be extraverted, which leads to us introverts feeling like theres something wrong with us. if i am in a small group of friends i have no trouble opening up and seeming more extraverted i think because we’re all sort of the same style of personality, but if i’m in a group of strangers i don’t know i end up being a bit of a wallflower. i loved reading about WHY and how normal this is!

    1. I definitely feel the same way!! It’s comforting isn’t it, knowing that it’s not through any fault of your own, it’s just a difference in built-in personality type. Thanks for the kind comment 🙂

  9. that is so interesting!! you should google the article called “caring for your introvert” – it gives the reader a new way of looking at introverts – and points out how common they are!

  10. Great post, Emily! I loved the part where you quoted conversations between an extrovert and introvert; I had many internal dialogues in university as I silently engaged in class discussions. I was probably seen as shy and non-communicative until my fifth year when I learned to play the game and said whatever popped into my head – totally not my style! Have you ever heard of the impostor’s syndrome? It’s also incredibly interesting and may explain a lot of why you feel the way you do. It typically effects high achieving women and makes them feel as though anything they have accomplished has been a fluke or just a stroke of good luck. They live in fear of one day being outed as an impostor, a child playing dress up… I’m not explaining this very well, but you should look it up! See you later today 🙂

    1. I am so intrigued by this “impostor’s syndrome”, I’d love to chat about it when we get together!! I took a quick look on Wikipedia and it does sound awfully familiar…

  11. Another introvert blogger here! I too have noticed lots of INFJ bloggers out there; I find this so interesting. I’ve tested as both INFJ and INFP at different times in the past.

    I love connecting with people through blogs/online because it also gets past the difficult “getting to know you” phase of meeting new people. That’s always been something that’s been difficult for me as an introvert.

  12. That is a very interesting article. One thing I’ve learned from reading blogs and reading in general, is how we’re all different. Sometimes it’s easy to assume we are very much the same without realizing how different people can truly be. I think I’m an extrovert who used to be more of an introvert. I used to be much more shy and quiet when I was younger but I’m much more outgoing now. I do notice that when I’m around people who are extremely extroverted it’s easy for me to dip back into being an introvert…or at least, just into being quiet and the real me doesn’t show. I hate those kinds of situations because I don’t feel like I’m showing who I really am or being allowed to show who I really am. I’m going to try and think more about other people who might be introverts when I’m in my extrovert mode, maybe I’m squashing someone’s personality by taking over and be too extroverted myself.

    Hmm…what does help you when you are around extroverts? I can think of one person in particular who seems very shy and quiet and it would be great to know what I could do to make him feel more comfortable…ideas?

    1. I’ve found when I am most introverted around people, it’s often because I feel like I can’t find a common thread of conversations. The times that I am shy and feeling awkward is the times when I am with a lot of people and can’t truly find a moment to jump in and talk because I feel inferior. When you introduce your friend to people, you may just want to start off with a topic that the person can really connect with RIGHT away so more further conversations can carry amongst everyone. That’s how I have made some of my best friends.

    2. “when I’m around people who are extremely extroverted it’s easy for me to dip back into being an introvert…or at least, just into being quiet and the real me doesn’t show”

      Me too! I find when I’m in a group I’m comfortable in, I can be more extraverted but around major extraverts I revert back to being very quiet. It’s frustrating. I just find they are overbearing and that I could never be as loud and out there and flamboyant, so I just keep quiet.

      A tip for dealing with introverts? Hmm I would just make a point of spending one on one time, asking open ended questions that aren’t in front of everybody, just to break the ice and make him a little more comfortable?

      1. I feel you with the overbearing-ness. It frustrates me, too because I don’t feel like they end up seeing the real me. I end up feeling boring and shy when really I’m not.

        In most of my experiences with this person I’m talking about I end up feeling like he’s just so rude because he makes weird comments…and then it makes me hard to want to reach out to him because I feel like he doesn’t like me/my family. I’m going to try again though, just because of this post, because I realize it might be really hard for him. AND, if he still can’t open up a little bit in a smaller situation and be polite when he talks to me, well, then I think I give up! Thanks for the suggestions! 🙂

  13. i’ve just been realizing how introverted i actually am lately. my job drains me [i’m a receptionist] and i feel stressed out and anxious ALL THE TIME. and i don’t feel like that’s legitimate for me to feel because, hello, my job is so easy.
    but.
    maybe that’s why i like blogging so much. it’s an introvert’s way to be extraverted. you interact with so many people, without having to actually interact with anyone at all.

    1. Definitely. I felt the same way – 2 years ago I was a receptionist too and at the end of the day I could just feel my heart RACING because I was so stressed by the fast pace and constant being around people without having ANY down time… when I moved into another position with my own little office where I could see people when I want… I ended up LOVING my job 🙂

  14. So I am normal!! I thought I have my own world or something. 🙂

    I can definitely say I’m an introvert though my behavior depends on the person I’m talking to. I can be shy around people I’m not comfortable with and it gives them the impression that I’m a snob or not interested. Or bored. I can only be silly and funny around people I’ve known long enough. Or maybe around people I’m comfortable with. But I am most comfortable when I am alone, even at home.

  15. I always joke that I’m an extrovert stuck in an introvert’s body. I can easily open up when given the chance but I can sometimes veer towards being quiet and I love my alone time.

    Sounds like a really interesting article.

  16. Fabulously interesting article! I definately relate to feeling overwhelmed and anxious even though I am seen by most people as the “extraverted” type. I can put on the face and do my job and people think I’m an extravert but I can’t wait to get out of the classroom and back to my office where I can close my door and have some down time. If I don’t have that I tend to go home for the day frazzled and stressed and take it out on my poor husband! I loved reading about the science behind the personality type. Thank you for sharing this with the world I hope lots of extraverts read it and keep it in mind next time they are dealing with people who appear “socially awkward”, maybe they are just processing internally.

  17. I like this idea. I am an introvert from waaaaay back. It was through drama classes and a lot of drunken practice that I learned to interact at parties with people. I tend to flee parties, and arrive at them late, while I sit alone and think, or sleep and dream. This article explains why I do that. To recharge my batteries. Which I’m currently doing on a Provincial scale. Thanks for this post. Very much appreciated. 🙂

    1. Awww, yay, I’m glad you got something out of it 🙂 I am the same way with parties. Get there late and leave early, but enjoy the SHORT period of social interaction while I’m there while being okay that though the party will probably go on for hours, I’ve made an appearance and had my “dose” of socialization and can still decompress afterward. If only you hadn’t hopped across the country, I’d have a new party-goer who’d be happy to leave at the same time I did! 🙂

  18. I am a pretty extroverted person in a sense that I really put myself out there when it comes to my writings and my videos and meeting new people on the street. But I have my moments where I can be extremely introverted. It tends to be my way of embracing what is going on around me. And I think introverts have that special knakk to them–that thing that really makes them understand the world around them. Sometimes people are so outgoing that they miss the small things (Think reality TV show stars). I think that your posts are EXTREMELY extroverted because you are such a strong individual with observation and passion for what you see…and I think that makes you a great mix of both, even if it isn’t extroverted by definition. I think often times people put introverts on different track…sometimes label them loners–and thats why introverts get such a different rep than what they are looking for. I consider introverts STRONG HARDY INDVIDUALS who are just grasping life and putting their observations out there in an intriguing interesting way–maybe through art, or video, or writing, or whatever. I recently heard from someone who used to work with Mr. Ashton Kutcher that he is EXTREMELY introverted…but extroverted in his art. Who would have known?

    1. Thanks for your kind words. It’s funny when you put it like that – I guess I can be a total extravert here on my blog because I’m afforded my introvert preference of having time to formulate and process before speaking up. I WANT to be extremly open, but in real life situations I find I need down time before being in front of a bunch of people.

      Very interesting point about Ashton Kutcher!!

  19. I clicked over to your site from a comment you left on my friend Cait’s blog, Finding My Balance and I just had to chime in on the idea of introversion. I took the Meyers-Briggs test a couple of times for work and was shocked to find out that I was an “I” — an introvert — because I’m so fond of being around people and I get sort of cranky when I’m by myself for too long. It was only after I found out that introverts are drained by socialization whereas extroverts are energized by social interaction that I realized the test was right. After I spend a lot of time with my friends, or with a crowd, all I want to do is just settle down by myself with my laptop and decompress for a bit.

    I think the career I’ve chosen (Children’s Librarian) is a reflection of the interplay of introvert/extrovert. I get to put on lively, energetic programs for kids and teens, and I get to interact at the circulation desk with parents, patrons, and colleages. But after it’s all said and done, I can go back to my desk in the back office and just reflect.

    Thanks for this article — as you can probably tell, it gave me a lot to think about! I’m glad I stumbled on your blog 😀

  20. This was so, so interesting for me to read! I am most definitely an introvert and it was so neat to read all about ME and why I am the way I am. I can totally see that I get overstimulated easily by big crowds, which is why finding a Bible study/book club has been so hard for me! Big crowds just make me further draw into myself, causing me to look standoffish and snooty.

    I handle them in small doses but at the end of the day, I like my own company.

  21. I honestly think introversion was one of the biggest factors that led me to writing in the first place. I don’t enjoy dealing with large, loud groups of people. I hate talking on the phone (and prefer the privacy of email). It’s best if I’m alone when I write or, at the very least, wearing headphones to block out the outside world and pipe in only the music/sound I want to hear.

    As far as extroversion leading to success, it’s a tough concept to unravel. We need other people, introvert or not, but the way an introvert “recharges” is through alone time. Extroverts recharge by hanging out with other people, exchanging pleasantries, etc. I’ve often wondered how much this ties in with feelings of loneliness or “apart-ness,” feeling different/disconnected, but I haven’t come up with anything concrete. I do know that I/we can’t survive this life as hermits. I need others to brew my beer, roast my coffee beans, truck in my food products… this is really stretching the definition, but you get what I mean. Then again, we control our involvement with the rest of the world, don’t we? At least, to a certain extent?

    1. Firstly let me just say how big a fan of your brain I am. You always leave such thought-provoking and intelligent comments and I really appreciate that!!

      You hit on an interesting point – how much introversion and extraversion correlate with feelings of loneliness and feelings of disconnect. I think another factor in that is age – as a teenager, the most important thing in the world is being accepted, having plans on a Friday night, having hundreds of Facebook friends… but for a true introvert those feelings of crowd-related anxiety may present themselves as “there’s something wrong with me”, “I don’t fit in” etc. simply as a result of subconscious mannerisms that may be perceived as social awkwardness. As we get older, “being popular” isn’t as high a priority, and I think that is when we turn more to self-assessment – and there’s a certain comfort, at least in my case reading this magazine article, in knowing that feeling disconnected isn’t a bad thing – it’s perfectly okay to spend time alone and recharge without beating yourself up for not going out with the crowd every weekend. But you’re right, we can’t live as hermits – and I do crave social companionship – in small doses. I guess, as with many things in life, it’s about finding the right balance between ideal and comfortable.

      1. I do my best but, again, you deserve all the credit. You’re a wonderful hostess.

        The correlation between introversion and loneliness is something I feel (felt?) like I know a lot about, particularly in my teenage years. I believe it’s one of the main factors that drove me into some risky behaviors, and it affects my apparent “trust issues” even today, among other things.

        I think, as with validation, that feeling of acceptance can become an addiction. You can force yourself into more, similar situations where you create the same scenario simply because you create the same result. When you’re a teenager, you have no idea where your limits are (or where they need to be) for things like this, like confidence, and that’s where it’s helpful to have clearly-defined boundaries. For someone as recklessly independent as I was/am, boundaries are essential. Part of the problem, though, is that introverts like me don’t identify boundaries for ourselves.

  22. I wasn’t able to respond to this yesterday because it led me to a lot of thinking. I wonder why society seems to value the extrovert over the introverts. Maybe it is because I am an introvert myself, but I much prefer introverts. I can sometimes feel uncomfortable around extreme extroverts.

    It is great timing that you posted this because while I am an introvert, I can sometimes play extrovert. Over the weekend one of my good friend’s husband’s made a comment that he thought I was an extrovert. Immediately my husband and I replied almost in unison “Oh no, for sure not”. I usually only see him when we are in a group of our friends and when I am surrounded by friends it is much easier to be extroverted but I value my quiet time/down time too much. If we have a busy weekend with people, I always take Monday off to decompress!

    Thank you for sharing this article and providing me with material to think about for a whole day!

    1. I love that you thought about the topic for a whole day!! 🙂 I think I can ‘play’ extravert sometimes too – once in a while if I am with a group of people who score higher on the introversion scale than me, that makes me the closest to extraversion of the bunch, therefore I feel way more comfortable being the outspoken one. Case in point – last week I went out for dinner with a couple of friends, and we didn’t receive our food for an hour and 20 minutes, cutting it really close to a movie we were supposed to go and see right afterward. My friends were content to keep quiet, just get the food to go, and not say anything, and I was comfortable enough with them that I could step forward, talk to the manager, politely let him know how unacceptable it was and get 50% off the bill. But if I’d been out for dinner in the same situation with a group of extreme extraverts, I would’ve been the one to keep quiet…

      1. Oh yes, I completely understand that. I will speak up if I have to but if someone else will, I am fine to not say anything. My husband is also an introvert so it is a toss up as to who speaks up between us. If it’s over the phone, it’s usually my husband and if it’s in person or email it’s me.

  23. Hi Emily!
    This was great.
    I took the Myers Briggs test and was interested to discover that I am INFP. A Healer and an introvert. Apparently this type makes up about 1% of the population. (Wow, does that ever explain a lot! LOL.)
    I love this post as it was very enlightening for me. I realized that like many I have often confused introversion with shyness. They are two totally different things.
    I never really saw myself as an introvert because I am not shy and I am VERY talkative. That said, I still prefer to be alone most of all and I do find too much interaction to be over-stimulating.
    This makes me wonder. How much time do we spend judging others and finding fault and reasons to be critical when what we are being critical of are the things that we have no control over?
    Thank you for this.

    1. We are so close! I think mine is <1% which also explains a lot LOL. One of my peeves is the mass misconception that introversion is the same as shyness, where in reality it just means what you get your energy from – within, or externally from other people. I think that's a huge reason why there is so much judgment in the world – people judging based on something they think is a choice, but is in actuality, internal "wiring" as it were…

  24. I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE that you posted this. YOU HAVE NO IDEA!

    “Is this why, for years, I believed I wasn’t really worthy of deep relationships and meaningful friendships, because I wasn’t a big speaker, not really good at improvisation or making jokes, or even thinking on the spot to answer simple questions like “how are you?””
    ^
    ^
    I CANNOT tell you HOW many times I have had this EXACT thought…word for word almost.

    I think you just made my day with this post because I related to it so much. I loved the part about how we’re not shy, we just get overstimulated. This fits me to a TEE. I can’t hang out with people ALL day long, because I start to essentially go crazy…and I love how this article explained that whole process, and how we need to gather our many thoughts!

    Yay for introverts! 🙂 Love you Em!

  25. Yea for introverts. I am one as well. I do love being around people, but I need my down time. I need my quiet time. I need my alone time. I was reminded of that this weekend when I way way way over-committed. By Sunday night I felt so out of sorts and couldn’t figure out. Then I was like – duh, you have been socializing pretty much non-stop all weekend…

  26. Thanks for sharing that article! What an interesting read…

    I’m definitely an extrovert (sometimes an extreme one…) but it’s interesting to see how many people aren’t… which I guess means a lot of people are fantastic fakers.

  27. A brain injury 3 years ago effected my mental processes and speech and, subsequently, forced me to be an introvert when I had been a “chatty Cathy” my whole life until then. You know what? I found my true nature!

    It feels much more comfortable and natural to me. It has been a tremendous growing experience to just shut up and listen and to learn to like my own company. I actually prefer solitude now. I only talk on the phone when absolutely necessary and do not socialize much at all. And that is perfectly OK with me. I am happy.

    I think I put on the mask of an extrovert because that is what I thought I “should” do. I am introvert now and loving it!

  28. This is probably one of the most interesting blog posts I’ve read. After I was done I thought. “There’s nothing wrong with me after all! And I’m not alone”!

    This was fantastic, thanks.

  29. Oh what a lightbulb moment! I am not as shy as I used to be and I always equated that with being more extroverted now than I used to be but this makes so much sense. Wanting to leave a party after an hour … it all is so familiar. This was so good to read. And I think you might be on to something with the blogging being popular among introverts.
    What is the name of the magazine where you found the article? Do you know if it’s available online? Or could you be so kind to scan the article and email it to me? I’d love to read the whole thing. Thanks.

  30. This is fascinating. I thiiiiiiink I’m an extrovert (based on the description of how an introvert thinks), but I do love silence and solitude. Is there something in the middle?

  31. I loved this! I’m an introvert too married to an extravert and only this year have I really felt the stretch. But I’m with you, reading stuff like that finally puts me at ease like, “Oh so I’m not just a crazy person!” My husband thrives on being around people and after 1 beer I’m ready to go home. I’m a big fan of the Myers Briggs too and I’m an INFP (so close to you) and my type is really rare too. We’re like social issue soulmates 😉

  32. I’m not that much of a online reader to be honest but your sites really nice,
    keep it up! I’ll go ahead and bookmark your website to come back down the road. Many thanks

  33. This blog is incredible! You certainly know how to keep a reader amused.
    Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start
    my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Great job.
    I really loved what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it.
    Too cool!

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