Today I want to talk about being an Introvert. I'm sure a lot of you out there are as well. I want to describe how and why I am an Introvert, and how it affects my life. Maybe this will shed some light on how you are perceived too, or maybe it will shed some light on how you are perceiving Introverts like me. It doesn't boil down to shyness and self-esteem issues... those traits need not apply!
As an Introvert, I do not like crowds, small talk, social gatherings that include more than 4 people (especially social gatherings that include strangers), putting my personal life out there, bragging, talking about myself, talking on the phone, video conferences, and the list goes on! But as the years have gone by I have realized it's not because I am shy. I love my close friends and I have no problem being myself around them. I have no problem presenting ideas or public speaking (as long as I am beyond prepared!) I was also very much into performance art as a youngin' because playing SOMEONE ELSE was exhilarating. If I'm not myself, I'll let it all hang out with no problem. My "introvertedness" stems from a need for having all the facts, modesty, and not being afraid of being alone or needing attention as well.
A couple of months ago I was on a shoot for a commercial (I work in TV) and one of the talent read me immediately. We were in a production meeting, the first time speaking with talent in person, and throughout the entire conversation I kept pretty quiet and took notes and jotted down questions and ideas. To many, this would seem that I am either not interested, have no idea what I am doing, am inexperienced, and/or have no business being there. It's quite the opposite as this talent pointed out. At the end of the conversation she said, pointing to me, "I like this girl, she sat here and just figured us all out." Brava, my dear - YOU figured ME out! I don't just talk so that I have a say in something, I don't just jabber because if I don't people will think I have nothing to offer. I also don't upstage people higher on the food chain. I am calculating. I draw diagrams, pictures, make lists, raise questions, write paragraphs all before I open my mouth. With whatever I am about to propose, I have my idea ready and questions already answered. Maybe I should have been a lawyer but what is perceived as shyness/inexperience is really someone who is crafting something, and they'll share when they have all the i's dotted and the t's crossed! I am not saying that people who speak their minds all the time are wrong. I'm just explaining why I act this way. Carry on how you carry on!
I am not one to speak of my achievements. I don't boast about things that I've done or talk myself up. I usually don't even bring it up unless I am asked. I never one-up people, and I also like to have an air of mystery. I probably do this to a fault because sometimes you just have to share your accomplishments otherwise people will never know you have these talents or experiences under your belt. This is an area though that I really do not know how to improve. The thought of me talking myself up makes me gag!
I was an only child growing up and both of my parents worked until my mom got sick. Being alone never bothered me. I had my movies and my pets, and I acted out plays in my room and I was ok with it! I did a lot of growing up on my own. I had friends, hung out, played sports, participated in plays and other activities as well, but being on my own was cool too. This has created an interesting trait in myself in that I like to work alone on projects, and I like to partner up with people who are collaborative and share information with me. I think this Introverted trait in particular is the most versatile of all. I like to be around like minded people... just not for very long. :o)
Again, my point in this post was to share why I am an Introvert. We get labeled so many different things: angry, bitchy, shy, losers, uptight, negative, rude, weirdoes, mean, snobby, etc. We are not.... for the most part. There are some evil people out there no matter how introverted they are or not! :o)
Extroverts, I want to hear from you!
What makes you one and what are the myths about you?