Post Soundtrack: Sprawl II by Arcade Fire (as requested by my Economics Professor, Dr. Khandke)
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On the Myers Brigg’s Personality test I scored 17 – 0 introvert. I think about 99% of people I come into contact with on a regular basis would be very surprised to hear this little fact because I put so much effort into coping with my extreme introverted-ness that I often come across extremely extroverted. Now being an introvert in no way means that I hate people, or I am a recluse or that I even dislike social situations; it just means that I draw my energy from being alone rather than by being with others. I recently ran across a blog that breaks down some common myths about introverted-ness. According to the blogger, Carl King, the psychological research says that only about 25% of all people are “introverts” and of that group there are only a mere handful of people who are as introverted as I am. Since there are so few of us that are introverted, society has a lot of misconceptions about us introverts… I couldn’t do a better job myself so, here is Carl King busting 10 common myths about introverted-ness.
“Myth #1 – Introverts don’t like to talk.
This is not true. Introverts just don’t talk unless they have something to say. They hate small talk. Get an introvert talking about something they are interested in, and they won’t shut up for days.
Myth #2 – Introverts are shy.
Shyness has nothing to do with being an Introvert. Introverts are not necessarily afraid of people. What they need is a reason to interact. They don’t interact for the sake of interacting. If you want to talk to an Introvert, just start talking. Don’t worry about being polite.
Myth #3 – Introverts are rude.
Introverts often don’t see a reason for beating around the bush with social pleasantries. They want everyone to just be real and honest. Unfortunately, this is not acceptable in most settings, so Introverts can feel a lot of pressure to fit in, which they find exhausting.
Myth #4 – Introverts don’t like people.
On the contrary, Introverts intensely value the few friends they have. They can count their close friends on one hand. If you are lucky enough for an introvert to consider you a friend, you probably have a loyal ally for life. Once you have earned their respect as being a person of substance, you’re in.
Myth #5 – Introverts don’t like to go out in public.
Nonsense. Introverts just don’t like to go out in public FOR AS LONG. They also like to avoid the complications that are involved in public activities. They take in data and experiences very quickly, and as a result, don’t need to be there for long to “get it.” They’re ready to go home, recharge, and process it all. In fact, recharging is absolutely crucial for Introverts.
Myth #6 – Introverts always want to be alone.
Introverts are perfectly comfortable with their own thoughts. They think a lot. They daydream. They like to have problems to work on, puzzles to solve. But they can also get incredibly lonely if they don’t have anyone to share their discoveries with. They crave an authentic and sincere connection with ONE PERSON at a time.
Myth #7 – Introverts are weird.
Introverts are often individualists. They don’t follow the crowd. They’d prefer to be valued for their novel ways of living. They think for themselves and because of that, they often challenge the norm. They don’t make most decisions based on what is popular or trendy.
Myth #8 – Introverts are aloof nerds.
Introverts are people who primarily look inward, paying close attention to their thoughts and emotions. It’s not that they are incapable of paying attention to what is going on around them, it’s just that their inner world is much more stimulating and rewarding to them.
Myth #9 – Introverts don’t know how to relax and have fun.
Introverts typically relax at home or in nature, not in busy public places. Introverts are not thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies. If there is too much talking and noise going on, they shut down. Their brains are too sensitive to the neurotransmitter called Dopamine. Introverts and Extroverts have different dominant neuro-pathways. Just look it up.
Myth #10 – Introverts can fix themselves and become Extroverts.
A world without Introverts would be a world with few scientists, musicians, artists, poets, filmmakers, doctors, mathematicians, writers, and philosophers. That being said, there are still plenty of techniques an Extrovert can learn in order to interact with Introverts. (Yes, I reversed these two terms on purpose to show you how biased our society is.) Introverts cannot “fix themselves” and deserve respect for their natural temperament and contributions to the human race. In fact, one study (Silverman, 1986) showed that the percentage of Introverts increases with IQ.”
What is the point of telling you all of this? I’m glad you asked!
With my challenging classes, numerous activities, constant meetings, and now the fun yet time consuming associate member process for Pi Kapp it seems that I am drowning in the vast sea of overwhelming tasks that need completion.
A few weeks ago when I first started on my journey with the fraternity I could have sworn I was going to explode, fail out, or some mix of the two. It’s not that its not enjoyable, I wouldn’t be doing it if I wasn’t having a ton of fun, but it’s just such a time intensive commitment, and on top of all the other things that I also love doing it was quite a struggle at first. And what’s more all this GO GO GO GO GO is really exhausting for me. Last weekend I almost crashed, emotionally that is.
(Sidebar: When I crash it’s not pretty. Basically what happens is I enter a state of lethargy and intolerance where I am not only constantly physically and mentally exhausted, but also I can’t bring myself to really be around people at all. I get extremely mean and judgmental and I over analyze everything that happens to me. The only thing I can do for it is to wait it all out, in silence, alone – a process which can take a weekend or a month)
Anyhow, that wouldn’t have been a good thing, I am just too busy to recoup if I were to need that much time alone. Thankfully I realized that I needed to step back and have some nights to myself.
Over the course of this week I not only detoxed from my overdose of humanity (something that lets me recharge the batteries for my extrovert mask) but I also organized my calendars and to-do lists down to the most minuscule detail (I literally put an egg timer on my desk so that I can keep track of how long I take to accomplish taks… oh, it just rang…)
Heading into the weeks to come I feel like I am ready to handle the commitments I have made, but also be aware of myself enough to know when to say no to more social activities.
What I’ve learned: College is all about balance. Social time with time alone. School with fun. Homework with relaxation. Balance.