Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Shhhh... I'm Introverting

I'm an introvert. There is no denying it. Some people are somewhere between extrovert and introvert--I believe it is called ambiversion, but I am firmly on the side of introversion. I come from a family of introverts, so it's sometimes hard for me to remember that other people do not function the same way I do.

Rather than explain what introversion is, I want to tell you what it means to me personally. You can find all kinds of information on introversion, what it is, and how introverts behave on average. That's not what I want to do today.

I don't dislike people. I do dislike crowds. They make me nervous.

I don't actually dislike interacting with other people, even strangers. Today, I purposely went inside the bank and Starbucks rather than the drive thru. I even avoided self check-out at Walmart. It is possible that I prefer face-to-face interaction when I know dealing with other people is unavoidable. I have fewer screw-ups going inside than using the drive thru. But I can guarantee that none of these people knew I was an introvert. I'm as friendly as you could wish. I even smile.

Unfortunately, if I am forced to be constantly in the company of other people--even people I like--for days on end, I'm going to start feeling claustrophobic. If I spend a weekend at social events, come Monday, I need another weekend to recover from my weekend.

Even at parties that I'm enjoying I will be very aware of the exits, possible retreats from all the noise (a bathroom or hallway), and what time I am planning to leave. It's nothing against my host or my friends. I just can't handle extended periods of high noise levels well.

Small talk bores me. Almost nothing annoyed me more as a teenager than to be asked how I was doing by someone that I knew perfectly well did not want an honest answer. This was especially true if I didn't think it was any of their business. I nearly insulted a dear friend when I complained about it, and he pointed out that he did care, and it was his business since he was my friend. I'm glad he called me out on it, but if he had not been a true friend, I would not have agreed with his sentiment.

If at all possible, text me. If a phone call is warranted, I would love dearly to have a text as a warning first, but I know that's not going to happen. Phone calls give me anxiety like you would not believe, unless you suffer from it yourself. Even making phone calls is difficult, which is why my sister and grandmother occasionally complain that they don't hear from me often enough. I love talking to my friends, but I hate phones. Phones are evil.

So...comment, text me, tweet me, email me, message me, post on my Facebook wall, but for the love of biscuits and gravy, don't call me about this blog post!

Want to read more about my introverted misadventures?
Check out these posts:

I Hugged a Stranger
Distance Makes the Heart Grow Fonder
Talking To Myself


  1. You speak truth! I work in sales and I'd much rather get a text or email.

    1. I had a preference for emails when I worked sales as well. I learned to deal with people on the phone, but I much preferred text based communication.

  2. Consider this your warning..... Dialing.... Jk!!! :-) But I'm glad you posted this as a reminder before our weekend together. :-) feel free to say, "shhhh.... I'm introverting!" At any given time and I'll be totally fine with occupying myself elsewhere. :-) hey, I can even go to the party that night if you need even more space.... But if I do go, I would enjoy having you along. Maybe we could find a quiet retreat away from the crowd together. :-) Speaking of being together.... We need to decide what we are going to do this weekend in case I need to bring along anything special..... Let me give you a ring and we will discuss in greater detail!!!!! ;-)

    1. No need. I know the party venue well; I know where to escape to if I need it. And I doubt I'll need an escape from one-on-one time. That's different, somehow.

  3. Ashley, this is like the second or third time I've gone back to read this article. It intrigues me; maybe I'm trying to "find myself". But I identify--maybe this is shocking. And today I happened onto another Introvert blogger. I think this might make you smile as well: http://www.stephaniejleinbach.com
    Love and prayers, Angela

    1. Thanks for recommending the blog, Angela. I've enjoyed her articles that I've read so far.