Reminder: You’re not broken.
Even with all of the pithy internet pieces out there, such as The Atlantic article Caring For Your Introvert, as well as the book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain — to me it still seems as if being introverted is something people want you to overcome rather than embrace.
I am emotionally reserved. I’m sure a part of it is because I am also an anxious person and I need a lot of time before I feel comfortable around someone, but a part of it is also just my temperament.
Sometimes I feel the urge to inject my opinion into a discussion just to prove to everyone that I’m not a robot — I do have thoughts and feelings. But nine times out of ten I fall back on what I’ve trained myself to do in the last few years — ask myself if what I’m about to say has any merit or value. Will it enlighten anyone or contribute to the conversation? If not…then I won’t waste my breath.
It may seem like I’m needlessly complicating the art of conversation — but I’m trying to be respectful of people’s time and voice. There’s already so much noise out there — why contribute more to it if what I have to say isn’t really of value?
For a while I was burnt out on discussions about introversion and extroversion, because I felt I had learned all I needed to know about them. I had a dalliance with researching and discussing Myers Briggs/Keirsey personality tests (I’m an INFP who initially thought she was an INTP, in case you’re wondering) But I felt that there were too many hollow think pieces and clickbait articles on what it meant to be an introvert — and my interest waned. Even with my current frustration, it’s not something that dominates my thinking.
So this is mostly for me, but if anyone else feeling the way I am reads this I hope it inspires you to take a step back and remind yourself that you’re not broken. Quiet and reserved, perhaps. But definitely not broken.