You’re an introvert.
You know deep down in your soul that you’re an introvert, but when asked the famous question: what is an introvert? your brain will most likely decide to nap at that moment and all you’re left with is a stammering mouth.
Try answering that question.
Is it easy? if not, then welcome to the club! because I’ve been there, done the stammering part, and had to go home and dwell on it for the next decade.
I’m kidding, it took me just a year or so to forget about it.
So what’s the meaning of an introvert?
In this post, I’m putting together everything I know about introversion … What is an introvert, types of introverts, causes, and what makes us so freaking BOMB!
Definition of an introvert
Introversion is a personality trait, that’s it.
Before we go any further with this post, I want you to understand that introverts are normal people, we are normal, and there is nothing wrong with being an introvert.
I’m just tired of people, especially on the internet trying to turn introversion into a mental disorder, it’s NOT!
Back to our introvert definition…
Introverts and extroverts have different mindsets, to put it simply, introverts are people who ponder largely on their internal feelings while extroverts don’t give these inner feelings much thought and focus instead on their surroundings.
That’s why most of us introverts need time alone to focus on our inner feelings and think things through and by this we gain or recharge our energy.
What do you mean by recharging our energy?
You see, introverts feel drained and at times even look pretty much miserable in overstimulating places, that’s because we’re losing energy trying to cope with too much noise, too many people in the same place, and just lots of distraction. We just can’t stay focused for long. While extroverts look and sound like they are having the best of their time in such places.
Because introverts tend to gain their energy for being alone ( mostly at home) while extroverts ( spelled sometimes extraverts ) gain their energy from spending time outdoors with others.
I wouldn’t mention being uncomfortable around people in overstimulating places or being unable to make eye contact with anyone for more than 2 seconds, because in fact, that’s not what being introverted is about, that’s just my plain old unwanted friend: shyness, and No, these two are not the same, but we’ll get into that later on this post…
What Are The 4 Types Of Introverts?
Introversion is not defined by model behaviors that fit all introverts. And yes a lot of these personality-based behaviors can be found in most introverts, but eventually, some will dominate from one introvert to another.
So what kind of introvert are you?
According to psychologist Jonathan Cheek, there are four types of introverts: social, reserved, thinking, and anxious.
Social introverts are the popular type of introverts, some even refer to them as outgoing introverts. They’re the ones who avoid social gatherings and chose the solitude of their home. they prefer solitary activities and often hang out with only one or two friends. what really stands out with this type of introversion is that being alone is a preference. They don’t attend parties or any other social event with lots of people present because they feel uncomfortable or anxious, rather they do it because they simply prefer solitude over socializing.
Anxious introverts also avoid social gatherings and would always choose to stay home over accepting an invitation to hang out at parties, but the thing about anxious introverts is that they chose solitude because they feel uncomfortable around strangers or distant relatives, they would be so self-conscious and aware of the people around them, they won’t get the time to enjoy themselves.
People with this type of introversion may secretly want to be invited and recognized among others but their shyness and fear of making any possible mistake always hold them back.
Introverts are often told to stop living inside their heads! the daydreamers! the creative ones… These are named the thinking introverts.
Thinking introverts are introspective, they’re often self-reflective, and almost always deeply intrigued.
Because they are blessed with a creative mind, a lot of introverts that fall under this subtype are talented writers like Shonda Rhimes, the hit TV show “grays anatomy’s” writer, and artists like the Irish poet Oscar Wilde.
Introverts who think before acting or speaking. They are often thought of as reserved and standoffish due to them just taking time to speak or get to action. But, in reality, they’re just not impulsive and like to say the right words and make the right decision.
This falls pretty much on everything in their daily life, they just take their time to perform their daily habits, which in all honesty, I find super cool!
Are You Born Introverted? Causes To Introversion
When it comes to defining what causes our introversion, there is a lot of misconception around this subject, but one thing is for sure: we are either born introverted or extroverted.
So, physiologically speaking, as I said we are either born introverts or extroverts ( not to an extreme point though ) based on the level of some hormones regulated from a neurotic system called the ‘’reticular activating system (RAS)’’. To put it simply, this cute system is the one responsible for our level of awareness and wakefulness, hold that thought, we’ll be right back to it.
Now assuming you’re an introvert, and you spent the whole day with your friend who is extroverted at a ceremony where there are TONS of strangers, at first it’s all good and nice but by the end of the day you’ll start feeling uncomfortable and overwhelmed and it’s not just a feeling, you, in fact, get physically, bodily drained while your friend who’s been with you the whole day is perfectly normal, he’s having the time of his life actually!
Why is that? because We introverts have naturally higher awareness and wakefulness hormonal levels regulated by the system above, so we tend to be more alert and ready for danger even though there is no danger we just are unintentionally hyper-aware of our environment than extroverts ( who have naturally low awareness and wakefulness hormonal levels), and this is why we need more time alone to recharge and just drop our guard down.
But even though we are born introverts, a lot of our introverted behaviors are either nourished or subdued by life experiences and traumas.
Introversion And Shyness: Definition And Deference
A lot of people mistake shyness for introversion, when in fact it’s two different things, but they kind of interfere in the case of many introverted personalities, mine for example!
Please, do let me elaborate …
Introversion is a personality trait, it’s based on a preference for solitude and disinterest in socializing and the tedious task of going through small talks.
Shyness, on the other hand, is a feeling of discomfort and anxiety when socially interacting with others, and it comes back to the fair of making fun of oneself in front of others.
Do you see the difference between shyness and introversion? Shy people avoid social interaction out of fear and social anxiety, they may want or crave these interactions but this feeling of shyness holds them back, introverted people avoid it out of preference, they simply don’t want to.
Now if you ask me, What is it like to be a shy introvert, I’d say …
You don’t know if you’ve done something out of introversion or shyness, I think anxious introverts relate to the struggle. when needed to become an extroverted introvert it sometimes requires hours of prep talks and mental preparation to get out there and do the work, but practice makes perfect and the more you do it the easier it gets, trust me.
Also, keep in mind that both introverts and extroverts (extraverts ) can be shy, this feeling is not exclusive to introverts.
Is Being An Introvert Bad?
Even though it’s been years since the subtle revolution of introverts in this extroverted world has begun, there are still lots of misconceptions around introverts and what introversion is really about.
We are often thought of as rude and reserved when we keep quiet during meaningless conversations.
We are often told to get our noses out of our books, break away from our shell ( aka house ) and go out to socialize as “normal” people do.
We are often shamed by those closest to us for being daydreamers.
Do you know what’s sad about this?
Introverts themselves believe this and think that being an introvert is a bad thing and even search for ways to “cure” their introversion asking questions such as “ how do I stop being so introverted?”
There is nothing here to cure but your sweet devious mindset…
Being an introvert is not a bad thing, has never been bad unless you let your fixed mindset and your toxic surrounding convince you of that.
If you think you failed your job interview, lost a chance with someone you really like, or even suffered depression because you’re an introvert, believe me, you’re just throwing the blame on the most amazing gift you were born with …
Being an introvert.
This is what I came to realize after years of thinking I am being held back in life because I’m an introvert, when in fact I am shy and have a fixed mindset, and both of those can be cured, while my personality trait just needs to be celebrated.
And this is why I started this blog, to celebrate introversion while growing together.
It’s about time you change your mindset to be more aware of and ready to embrace your introversion, because dear, you are BOMB!
By the way here’s my tip on how to use introversion to your advantage.
If you reached this part then I’m assuming you really want to understand your introversion and how to thrive being an introvert, this is why I started this blog, I’m on a journey to grow and I want to take as many amazing introverts with me as I can.
Please show me support by sharing this article to help me grow this community, and together..let’s grow!