Consider the Lilies..: Things you might not know about introverts..   

May 4, 2015

Things you might not know about introverts..

We don't care about your birthday..
Ok, maybe 'don't care' is a little too harsh..  Of course we care about you and we are glad you have lived another year..  Seriously..  
We just don't want to celebrate it with you..  We are happy to take you to lunch or send you flowers or something, but we don't want to come to your birthday party..
It's nothing personal..  
I know how mean that sounds.  But for real, it's nothing personal..
To be honest, we don't want to come to your anything: not your birthday, your kid's birthday, baby-shower, bridal-shower, graduation party, etc.  Not even weddings..
We do show up to things occasionally because we know that people take it personally when we don't (even though I said it's nothing personal) but given the choice, we would rather not..

We don't care about our own birthday..
You know how people say "don't make a fuss over my birthday" but don't really mean it?
Well, we do..  It's not a fear of getting older, it's not denial; we just don't want you to make a big deal over it.  
We don't want a party, we certainly don't want a surprise party, and we are perfectly ok if you don't even remember it.
If Clay is home, we go to dinner and a movie..  My sister makes me something and usually gives it to me before my actual birthday, and Sky will either do all the housework or she'll give me a gift..  That's it..  I'm good with that..
I don't even answer the phone on my birthday because I don't want to have that awkward "happy birthday" conversation..
But if an introvert actually does agree to let you take them to lunch on their birthday, here is a tip for you; do not ever have the waiters sing "happy birthday"..  It might be the last time that introvert ever speaks to you..
I'm not kidding.. 

We are not sad or depressed or hiding from the world..
We are busy people..  Just because we aren't out socializing doesn't mean we aren't doing anything..  We are reading, writing, learning, studying, working, conversing, thinking, organizing, doing..
For real..
We don't just sit around and watch television all day..  In fact, my television is never on during the day, because I'm too busy doing..

We just don't love to talk on the phone..
That doesn't mean we won't, but there has to be a reason..  I can talk on the phone with my friend Kathy for 3 or 4 hours because when she calls, she calls for a reason..  We have a conversation..  Real conversation..  It's the same with my friend Tina.. She calls when she has something to talk about, and usually only when she can't convey her thoughts properly through text..  
I would much rather text.  Introverts express ideas better when writing rather than talking.
But calling just to say "hi"?  Ugh..  Just don't..  We don't enjoy the "just calling to see how you're doing" calls..
At all.

We really do have friends..
And we like them..  Truly!  We enjoy spending time with them..  We even enjoy getting together with several friends at a time..  We go to dinners, social events, concerts, barbecue's, all that jazz..  We can talk, joke, and laugh with everyone..
But when it's over we want to stay in our house and not see or talk to anyone for a week..
You didn't do anything to offend us and we are not upset about anything..  
We just need to recharge..
Again, it's nothing personal..

We aren't shy or rude, and we aren't snobs..
We just don't know you..  Give us some time..  Let us get accustomed to you and you will see that we can hold a conversation that lasts longer than 5 minutes..  The thing is, we just don't talk to everyone..  For us, being 'social' or 'sociable' is an option, not a way of being.. We don't fake excited, happy or even interested very well and we absolutely despise small talk..

About small talk..
Honest!
We are thinkers..  We love a good conversation, but small talk?  It's torture..  Give us a topic and we will talk about it..  Chose one of our favorite topics and just try to shut us up!  
But's it's got to be a real conversation..  If you just want to pass the time, or talk about the weather; please don't..

Another conversation no-no..
We can't stand complaining or whining..  We aren't good with pity parties..
There are people out there who love being that person you call when you're upset..  They want you to call them..  They want to comfort you..  We don't..
It's not that we don't care about you..  We do..  We just aren't good at those types of situations..
So, unless you are my sister, don't call me when you're upset..  
I can promise you, I will not do a good job of making you feel better..  I don't know how..  I'll probably just upset you more..

We are absolutely ok being alone..
We like to entertain ourselves..  We have plenty to keep us busy..  Extroverts need to be around others almost all the time..  We don't..  We enjoy our own company and are very capable of entertaining ourselves..   
We are rarely bored or lonely.

If we are around you, it's because we want to be; appreciate it.
We value our time alone and we are picky about who we let in..  Letting in the wrong person is draining on us..  We tend to attract extroverts who eventually exhaust us, but we search for introverts like ourselves..  When we find one it's like finding buried treasure..
That's why Clay and I are so good together..  He's an introvert like me, with just a couple differences; he talks less than I do, but he handles small talk and awkward phone calls better than I do..

We don't do tactful well..
We really don't mean to be rude..  We aren't trying to be..  We just say what we think..
I don't mean that we say the first thing that pops into our heads, nor do I mean that we don't think before we speak..  I'm saying that we rarely consider the feelings of the person we are talking to when we we do speak..
That doesn't mean we give advice without being asked, or blurt out opinions without being asked; but when you ask for our advice or our opinion, we are going to give them to you..
For example: if you ask us what we think of your haircut, we are going to tell you what we think of your haircut.  If we don't like it, we are going to say "I don't like it".  
We don't sugar coat.  We aren't trying to hurt your feelings or insult you.  
We are being direct.  We want you to be direct with us too..
We wouldn't be hurt if you were direct with us, so we naturally assume you won't be hurt if we are direct with you.
If we hurt your feelings, say so.  We will apologize will try to remember that next time.

Call first..
Always..  If you come to our house without calling, there's a good chance we won't answer the door..  This is another one of those 'it's nothing personal' things..
For an introvert, being around others is something we need to prepare for..
I know that sounds weird..  But we have to be ready to see someone..  By 'ready' I don't mean that the house has to look a certain way, or we have to look a certain way; I mean that we have to be mentally ready..
*my sister is the exception to this rule*

We don't seek comfort when we are upset..
This is a tough one for extroverts to understand..
When something bad happens we don't want to talk about it right away..  We don't want you to call us, we don't want to be hugged and we don't want you to come over..
We need to process..  We need to think..  
Please, please please don't tell us that we need to talk about it..  
We know what we need..
If we need you, we will let you know..
Trust me..

We  don't require a lot of praise..
Everyone likes to know that their efforts are appreciated, but a simple 'thank you' is enough.  Don't get all mushy, it makes us uncomfortable..

 No touchy!
We don't like to hug or sit so close that we are touching and we really appreciate personal space..  We don't want you to pat our hand, or stroke our back, or rub our shoulders (unless they hurt, then we will ask you)..  Naturally there are a few exceptions; spouses or our children, or if we haven't seen you in a long time..  
Other than that?  A handshake will do..



Now someone blog about extroverts..  
I find them  fascinating..  
From a distance..  :)

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