Wednesday, December 5

Introverted Sonofabitch

If you're a fan of my Facebook page (FYI if you're not a fan you're pissing me off right now), you know that last week I posted something about how Cassie from Witty Title Here and I made something awesome, and that you'd probably find out about it this week. Well here it is, my loves! We teamed up to create a little somethin' that you can put on your own blog and a way to spread the news that introverts are not, in fact, a bunch of lonely freaks.


I was raised on a dirt road in the middle of the nowhere with no neighbors and no brothers and sisters. My parents are introverts. I had very few friends until I got to Jr. High, and I had a terrible time trying to fit in when I was growing up. I always preferred to sit on the sidelines and observe rather than immediately join in. Most would say I was "set up" for being introverted.

BUT (and this is a very big but):

The difference between being an introvert and being shy/quiet is that I would've turned out this way no matter where or how I was raised. Introversion is an actual sensitivity to dopamine due to different dominant neuro-pathways. We are not raised to be introverted, just as we are not raised to be gay or straight or mentally disabled or musical prodigies. We are born with it, and it is part of us no matter how much we do or do not nurture it. We cannot fix it, nor is it something that should need fixing to begin with.

Until about a year ago, I paid no attention to the fact that introversion was my most defining trait. I wondered why I constantly felt like I wasn't getting what I wanted from the people in my life even though I knew that I loved them and that they were good people.

This article was the first thing I found (I believe it was Evi that shared it, so thank you!) that made me pay attention because I finally felt understood. Those last 2 lines especially were a game changer, because that's what I seemed to struggle with most. Carl King also wrote an amazing post about this that's worth a read! The reason Cassie and I put this together is because we want to celebrate the fact that we are introspective, observant, reserved people. We notice things that others may not. We take our time and only say the things that we know will make a difference. We recharge when - and only when - we are by ourselves. And we don't want anyone else to feel guilty or wrong for having trouble with what our very extraverted society believes to be "normal."

So here’s where you come in. If you’re an introvert, and you feel as though you’ve been misperceived as shy/slow/weird/irrelevant because of who you are, we invite you to put one of these badass badges (Go here for the downloads and more info!) on your blog and write a post based on the following prompt: Just because I'm introverted, it doesn't mean...

Here are mine:

It doesn't mean I'm shy.
I have no shortage of opinions or things to say. EVER. I am loud and obnoxious and feisty, but only for certain people. Introverts are usually extremely picky about who they open up to: not just in love, but in casual conversation. It takes a while to decide if I want to subject someone to all my nonsense. And I can tell you with absolute certainty: when someones tries to draw it out of me, it usually doesn't work.

It doesn't mean I can still function like an extravert.
This is especially true at work. At my first job, I used to get put on the spot often. "Just throw some ideas at me," is a phrase that makes me panic. It's not how my mind works, and it doesn't help me produce results. Instead, it makes me retreat and feel inadequate because I can't spit out ideas like other people can. What I need in order to do my best work is to stand back and observe for a while. I may not have a lot to say while everyone brainstorms out loud as a team, but I promise that I am paying very close attention. When I feel that I've come up with a quality idea, I'll share it and work very hard to see it come to life. But I can almost guarantee that the great ideas won't come to me until I'm left alone.

It's also true in relationships. It's hard for introverts and extraverts to be together. The extravert will likely feel a bit neglected, and the introvert will likely feel a bit overwhelmed. It's perfectly acceptable for a date to want to take me out and introduce me to all his friends, and I'd love to do that to show him that I'm interested in his life - but the thought of it makes me shudder because it's just too much stimulation at one time. A balance and an understanding of this has to be reached for a relationship to survive.

It doesn't mean I'm a bitch!
Trust me, me being a bitch is an entirely separate issue ;) When I was growing up I was branded as a bitch because I sat back and watched my classmates before I joined in. If I didn't feel comfortable joining in, I wouldn't, and there was not a damn thing anyone could do about it. That doesn't go over well in school!

We hope you’ll join in and spread the love with this idea! And when you do, send me a link to your post so I can check you out (wink). I'll make sure to post each link on the downloads page!

Once again - the link to the downloads page.

Introverts UNITE (Individually!)

18 comments:

  1. Yes I'd say it takes extra effort for a self-guided introvert and an overly-compassionate extrovert to find a happy medium but the distance and time has strongly improved that. In fact. . I'd rather spend time with you than 90% of the planet which sort of makes me introverted at the same time.


    Proud of you Biff.

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    1. I love you Neil! A couple weeks and I'm gonna hug you so hard your eyeballs pop out and roll onto the floor

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  2. I am so happy I read this post today, it actually describes my husband in many ways....I honestly thought he just didn't like people. He comes across as an asshole just because he sits back and observes when meeting people instead of jumping into a conversation...however I do not consider myself an introvert, but I do share some of the qualities, but mainly because I am simply shy. Well anyways, Thank you for posting this, I love reading something that allows me to learn!! :)

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    1. Heather, your comment just made me smile so big! I know that struggle very, very well, and it's easy to see why so many introverted people can come off as rude. It makes me happy to know that you're willing to read about things like this and actually process them; a lot of people skim through but don't take the time to think about all the people in their lives that may feel this way.

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    2. I'm glad, and hes my husband, my best friend so It makes me happy to understand him even more! <3 I enjoy your blog and I am new to blogging myself, I am glad I found one like yours!

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  3. Wonderful!

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  4. Thanks for starting this whole thing :) You're an inspiration to introverts everywhere. I just posted mine.

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    1. I LOVE it, and thank goodness for having such amazing introverted blogger friends that understand each other!

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  5. One of my favorite TED talks is by Susan Cain called The Power of Introverts. Totally worth watching. ^_^


    http://www.ted.com/talks/susan_cain_the_power_of_introverts.html

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  6. I love reading about introverts, because I am the total opposite. I think it's so awesome how everyone is so different. Then again, if I was raised without siblings in the country with introverted parents.. I'd probably be an introvert, too! :)

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  7. Great post, this is so me. I can be really out-going when the right people are around but most of the time I'm not.

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    1. I'm so glad you like it! I'm the same; in the right environment I am out of control, but I am usually incredibly happy to spend time alone with my own mind. I'd love to see you post about this too!

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  8. Great post! I completely identify with everything you've said here. I'm grabbing me some badges for my blog. The thing about being an introvert when you're young that is difficult is that you often don't understand why you're different so you may begin to buy in to all of their crap.

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    1. Grab away! until today this comment was in my spam filter for some reason? Glad I fished it outta there. Thanks for stopping by :D

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  9. Stumbled on your blog post and loved it because I can totally relate. Especially to the "throw ideas at me" kind of thing. I'm a writer so definitely love my alone time. I posted your badge and a link to this page and one of your cited pages on my 3 FB pages. Power to the Intros!

    http://www.facebook.com/jaimerushauthor in case you're interested.

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    1. Thank you so much Jaime!! This means the world; I am so happy that people are reading and sharing and actually taking something away from this little project! You sharing it is a big freaking deal.

      Also I saw that little bio for your writing that says, "If you love and miss the X-Files..." That's all I needed to see. I'm gonna go check out your writing ASAP.

      Thanks again!

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  10. No, really, THANK YOU and Cassie for coming up with this blog project. This is my first real venture into really trying to connect (individually) with other bloggers, and to try something like this. This experience has been so positive, it really has encouraged me to try to get out there a little more, and realize that there's a lot of awesomeness out there that I can potentially be a part of. It tickles me even more that this truly was the perfect type project for me, because as an extreme introvert, it allowed for me to participate, but individually.

    Hooray for this, and I hope it continues to keep growing!

    (Do blog rings still exist? Because there should be some kind of central site, or even a website of its own for this!)

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