On Introversion

Introversion sucks.

Point blank period end of discussion.

Sure it’s all good in the beginning; skipping out on parties and get-togethers to hang out with yourself. It’s nice to be alone, by yourself, with your thoughts, a book and a movie. The thought of screaming in a club in unappealing, hell the thought of being around other people is exhausting. You enjoy your company the most, and there’s nothing wrong with that. You are introverted and proud.

Until one day you realise that you do not know how to function in society.

I mean, you always knew that you were “different”. Everyone else seemed so comfortable being social, having lots of best friends and being the life of the party. You were pretty much a happy loner, you had-have- friends but you don’t keep in touch regularly. You have never really craved company and you have never needed others to make you feel good. You have always been okay with being alone until now.

You begin to realise, corny as it sounds, that no human is an island. Maybe it would be nice to have best friends that you can yap on and on about nothing with. Maybe it would be nice to have lots of pictures commemorating the fun times you and your friends have had. Maybe you should have socialised a bit more. Maybe you should have tried harder to make and maintain relationships. You begin to realise how necessary human companionship is. The conversations you have with yourself? You wish to have them with another human being. The scenarios you play in your head? You wish for them to be reality. You still have no desire to be the life of the party, but you sometimes wish you had more excitement in your life.You are tired of only showing your real self in certain settings when you are really comfortable, tired of people saying they did not know you were this crazy. You want to be comfortable at all times, at least comfortable enough to talk to people.

But one’s personality is difficult to change, especially in later years. You cannot simply become extroverted. Introversion still weighs down on you; you want to talk to people and mingle, and at the same time you want to be left alone. Be my friend, but no please don’t bother me. It would be nice to have everyone make a big deal of your birthday, but at the same time the thought of all the attention makes you dizzy and afraid.

Besides, everyone else is so different. You cannot relate to their experiences, and you do not think you have much to add to their conversations. You really want to have fun and at the same time you really do not want to leave your room. Your Fear Of Missing Out is strong, but it’s no match for your Reluctance To Leave Your Room.

Everyone one around you is chatting away about their weekends, and you’re seated alone wishing you could yap away as well, but grateful that no one is talking to you because, well you have nothing to say about your weekend. So you just read your book or check your phone.

Fed up with the solitude, you want to start actively making changes; and you try contacting friends you have not communicated with in ages. Their lives have moved on quite a bit, because the lives of others do not stop just because you haven’t spoken in a while. It stings a little-a lot- that they did not tell you of these momentous changes in their lives. But what right do you have to their lives Ms. Introversion? Miss I don’t like to speak on the phone or text or communicate in anyway. Miss I let my phone ring because I really do not have the strength to carry on a conversation. Being introverted is not an excuse. “That’s just the way I am” is child babble.

It is hard to change and most times it seems impossible. Introversion is not an uncool-cool trait that writers and other creatives have. There are degrees to it and at the far end are those who cannot speak in public without feeling as if their heart will explode. Those who panic when they think someone is coming to speak to them. Those who rehearse future conversations and bail out on social gatherings because they have nothing to say.

It is nice to be by oneself, but it is also nice-necessary even- to leave the confines of one’s private sphere and go be with people. Laugh, take pictures, build a tribe, make memories. Life is not meant to be lived alone.

 

 

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6 thoughts on “On Introversion

  1. I understand and relate to every word you said. Well, at least you have got an ability convert your thoughts into words unlike me. At the end of day , everyone is unique , different & sees the world differently. We are all alone. It would useful for us if we accept this truth and appreciate what we have rather than chasing something which we want but don’t how it would affect us.

    • You do have a point. It would in fact be great if everyone could just be content with their uniqueness/weirdness/whatever, but it is easier said than done. We can’t help but feel that things could be better. Yes things could be worse, but they could also be better.
      Thanks for your comment 🙂

  2. I consider myself an introvert who use to celebrate being in solitude all the time in Middle and High School. Like you said in your post, one’s personality is difficult to change. Everyday, I am faced with the question, “Hey Cabby to do wanna go with us?” and every time, it’s a battle with myself to say yes or no.

    I am really serious when I say the phase, “I’m an introvert.” I don’t do this for attention- or to fit a trend-in fact that’s the opposite of what I want to do. In college, when I tried to get out of my comfort zone, that’s when I realized that this is just who I am. It’s exhausting to be someone you are not so if someone wants to celebrate introversion to whatever degree, I believe they have a right to.

    • “Hey Cabby, do you wanna go with us?” I know this struggle all too well! Eventually, these requests may cease 😦
      Getting out of one’s comfort zone is extremely difficult for an introvert, and I agree with you that people have the right to celebrate their introversion. Still a time may come when the solitude turns to loneliness and it becomes impossible to celebrate it any longer. It is easy to become disillusioned with life as an introvert, and if this happens I wonder if things can change through effort on the introvert’s part. It will be painful of course, and, and one may never fully become socially competent, but it is still worth a try because sometimes introversion just plain sucks.
      Thank you for your comment 😀

  3. What frustrates me is that extroversion has always, and will always be celebrated. I didn’t notice until somewhat recently the increase of introverted based articles and blogs that have surfaced about introversion. Now I’ve been hearing that it’s more of a “hipster trend.” So not true! It can be very difficult, embarrassing, and isolating. At the same time, I’ve accepted that it’s who I am. I’m not going to change. Yes, I do put in more of an effort at times to force myself into social situations, but I can’t see myself ever being truly comfortable. I love hearing other ppl bring attention to the personality trait that so many are ashamed to talk openly about openly and honestly.

    • Thank you for your comment 🙂
      I agree with your point about people viewing introversion as a trend. Introversion is a topic that is beginning to gain attention as more introverts speak about it. The attention annoys some people who think “everyone is trying to be introverted now” or “introverts think they are better than extroverts” and this really isn’t the case at all. It is just really nice and comforting to see others express feelings that you know oh so well; nice to know you are not alone. It can be a struggle, but hey, everyone can’t be the life of the party.

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