I’m an introvert, which you probably already figured out by the title of this post.
I have learned to embrace my introverted self and that I’m not mentally nor physically able to function well in big social events for a long period of time. Try explaining that to an extrovert; they can’t fully comprehend.
My sister, for example, is one of the most social people I know. She is a night owl and we couldn’t be more opposite. Her idea of fun would include going out with friends and staying out late. She loves the camaraderie of others and could do this every day if she could. Just the thought of staying out late exhausts me.
I love people, don’t get me wrong, and I enjoy fellowship as well just not for a long period of time.
It seems as though more people now are embracing that they are introverted and are okay with it.
The more I listen to podcasts and read blogs, I have learned that those who behold such creativity are more inclined to being introverted. And while they may seem extroverted in a podcast, they are anything but.
As an introvert, we are in our heads a lot, but we also have an entire universe in our minds. Our minds are inundated by a myriad of ideas, stories, blog posts, content, and our ultimate goal—at least for most, is to inspire others and share our content with the world. We are driven by our dreams, goals, and aspirations we have in life.
We long to encourage and inspire people with our stories, photographs, art, blogs, music, or whatever talent it may be that you have.
Although we possess such creativity, one thing we lack at times is the ability to socialize without being awkward. You know what I’m talking about and you’re probably nodding your head right now in agreement.
I’ve had to train myself to be social and come up with stories, ask questions and be more open when I do hang out with friends and family. But it wasn’t always easy.
Just the other day, my husband and I were at a birthday party and I went to say hi to one of my friends. I went in for a hug and my hand seemed to have a mind of its own that day—my hand somehow ended up in her face and hit her and almost knocked her glasses off. We both laughed it off but I was mortified for a moment there.
Here is a list of a few things introverts struggle with besides being socially awkward.
1.) We Get Overwhelmed Easily
One of the main reasons we don’t like big social events is because crowds can easily overwhelm us. The constant noise, the inability to stay in one place without being asked to move, or the vast number of people can easily overwhelm us, causing our nervous system to go into overdrive to the point of shutting down.
It’s strange, I know, but I love how God has designed each of us differently. Can you imagine living in a world full of extroverts? Or can you imagine living in a world full of introverts? I can’t and thankfully we are all uniquely designed by our Creator.
2.) We lack Communication Skills
This is an obvious one. Now that I have learned a little more about my personality after taking the Enneagram and the 16 Personalities test, I can easily point out the introverts.
They are usually the ones that, after a church service let’s say, quickly sneak out the door and not initiate a conversation with anyone. I can’t even count how many times I’ve done this. Sometimes I just have nothing to say, and the last thing I want is to stand next to someone staring awkwardly at them. So, to save myself and others that moment, I’ll slowly leave the building.
3.) We Overthink Things
Usually, after meeting someone new, I often wonder what they thought about me and if I made a good impression.
Was I rude? Was I nice? Did I smile okay? Was my breath kicking? Maybe I shouldn’t have said that.
Usually, after a conversation, I’m bombarded by what-ifs and buts and I constantly wonder how I could have made things better even if nothing went wrong. We tend to care too much about what others think about us so we try our best to make a good impression.
4.) We need a LOT of Breaks
Now, this goes in hand with getting overwhelmed easily. After being with a group of friends after a while, you might feel drained and feel the need to leave and recharge.
Our idea of spending a weekend would be diving into a good book or staying home watching Netflix with our significant other. This is our comfort zone and we prefer staying in rather than going out.
To others, we may seem shy, but get to know us and we eventually come out of our shell—it just takes us a while.
Extroverts may call us lazy or lame but they just don’t understand how we function and vice versa. But truth be told, we need breaks from people and our way to refuel is to be alone.
I’m a hermit and if I don’t have to leave my house, I won’t.
5.) We Struggle to Express Ourselves
Because a lot of introverts are so creative, they have the ability to express themselves through writing, a song, or some sort of artistic form but expressing ourselves verbally is something we struggle with at times.
What we can’t say verbally we may say it in another fashion that best describes the way we feel.
I’ve found myself a stuttering mess when trying to explain something to my husband. While I have a way with words when I write, I have a hard time verbalizing what I would like to say.
Now that I am aware of the vast majority of introverts, I don’t have to pretend to be like everyone else and you shouldn’t either. We can all fully embrace that we are all created differently.
Although I don’t like socializing as much as others, I can still have close friendships and cultivate those friendships who understand me and won’t criticize me for being me.
This is an updated edition of a post originally published on nallelyrodriguez.org
Featured Image by Jake Ingle