Folks do love categories, and two I’ve never quite managed to squeeze myself into are the introvert/extrovert ones.
It’s pretty clear to me that nobody is ALL introvert or ALL extrovert, and that people are a lot more complicated than two categories.
I usually get put in the ‘extro’ category.
See, I’m chatty. If you haven’t met me in person, and you do, the first thing you will notice is: chatty.
Usually. Except for when I’m not!
I’m also the one who steps onto the dance floor first, has the difficult conversations (in public if necessary) and is nominated to speak for most groups I’m in.
Extroverts are defined as drawing energy from social interaction, introverts as finding social situations drain their energy. Extroverts recharge in crowds, introverts recharge with alone time.
Which would put me in the Intro camp, going by that definition only, although I can’t really relate to being that, either.
After teaching a workshop, running a webinar or going to a social event, I am totally worn out. I usually need the next day in bed with a book to recover.
So, here’s where I fall on the introvert/extrovert line….. I wonder where you fall?
1) I love to talk, I can’t bear small or fake talk. When people put on a ‘role voice’ like the woman who works in the bank or a tour guide, I find it comical and can’t engage with it.
2) I can stand up and speak or perform in public, but it takes a lot of mental and emotional energy before and after. When I see performers or speakers after they come off stage chatting madly to people, I simply don’t know how they can do it!
3) I mess up on how-to-act-with-people quite regularly. I don’t mean to be rude, but sometimes I am.
5) I am not good at getting other introverts talking, or generally getting people to talk about themselves. I actually have no idea how this is done!
6) I am a self-motivator and self-starter and work best with other folks who are, too. Although I can and will motivate co-workers, and offer support, I find it quite tiring – folks who can just get on with things will always be my colleagues of choice!
7) I can’t stand talking on the telephone. It totally wears me out!
8) I like to travel and adventure alone.
9) Even when meeting up with people for adventures, I much prefer to do the travelling bit by myself (yay for trains!).
10) I suck at just hanging out and chatting. Give me a joint project to work on, or a role, and I’m happy – expect me to just sit and chat and likely I’ll be up and leaving within 20 minutes.
11) Co-habiting is a massive challenge. Seriously – I don’t know how anyone prefers it! Practically, living alone in two houses is ridiculous so I don’t do it, but if I didn’t have a room of my own I would actually go bonkers. Bonkers, I tell you.
12) I do think out loud – which is an extrovert trait, by the way. All the thoughts must be voiced or written down. All!
13) Special dates are not my forte. I won’t send birthday cards very often, may miss parties and am not great at remembering special dates – but if you are in a serious fix at 3am, I am your go-to-person. I also am not fussed if you forget my birthday and Bik and I don’t actually know when our anniversary is, so he’s off the hook on that one. I do like to surprise people with nice things on ‘ordinary’ days, though.
14) A noisy room full of chatty people is not always something I can do.
15) There are interesting thoughts going on in my head, and sometimes I really need to be alone with those thoughts!