Caring for Your Introvert. This is pretty much exactly right. “I’m an introvert. You are a wonderful person and I like you. But now please shush.”
I’ve had this Dilbert strip hanging up on my cubicle wall for the last three years. I’m a huge introvert, and I usually prefer to get through my day with as little human contact as possible. It’s nothing against my friends, family, and co-workers. It’s just that the very definition of ‘introvert’ is that we acquire energy from quiet and solitude. So, when I saw this comic, I had to print it and hang it up. It amuses me because it’s such a perfect depiction of how I often approach my mornings.
A post by Joel inspired me to write this little bit today. I’ve been told in a number of my psychology classes that extroverts outnumber introverts significantly. I wouldn’t be too surprised by this. Our culture trains individuals to be extroverts in order to survive in the business world, in the social world, in just about every realm of life. I can behave in an extroverted manner for a brief
time, but it always leaves me worn out and drained. I am, by nature and by experience, an introvert. I can be alone for long periods of time and come out of seclusion feeling stronger, healthier, and more rested. Part of this is simply a result of my personality; I was born an introvert. Part of this is because I find it difficult to trust people right away (even though I’m almost always willing to give people the benefit of the doubt, an interesting dichotomy, I admit). Ultimately, if I don’t get alone time every day for at least a half hour to an hour, I find that I am more tired, irritable, and crabby than I like to be. Of course, you can also blame part of that on the artist in me — I am extremely moody for a male. But with copious amounts of sleep and time by myself, my moods tend to stabilize. My best and most creative work usually
develops when I am by myself (or with no one other than my wife), with my favorite music playing in the background. Part of me has been tempted lately to just seek out a career as an author (despite the knowledge of how difficult such a life can be), where I can be alone much of the time and just let my creative juices flow. Naturally, as a result of my introversion, I find it difficult to serve God fully since doing so requires me to interact frequently with other people. It takes a reliance upon Him to do something that does not come naturally to me. That’s just the way it is for me, and I suspect that’s the way it is for most of us who call ourselves introverts.