Shy, reserved, withdrawn, reticent, quiet, timid, bashful, unsociable, inward-looking, self-contained, self-absorbed, self-interested, contemplative, thoughtful, reflective, stand-offish, rude.
I’ve been called all of these things.
Throughout my childhood and even into my adult life I assumed I was all of these things, Id been called these things from family members, teachers, associates, colleagues and strangers and I believed it. I thought I was different, weird, even mad.
But these are just people’s interpretations of what they see and how they judge. Its okay, I accept this fully and understand why my presentation can appear to be all of these things and maybe more at times.
I read Carl Jung’s book “psychological types” several years ago when studying person centred counselling . To say Jung’s insightful perspectives on personality was life changing is an understatement. Finally, in printed form was a description of a “personality type” that was like reading my personal thoughts diary.
According to Jung, I was a person with a preference for Introversion, drawing energy from an internal world of thought and reflection. A person who would reflect, act then reflect further. I was someone who preferred communicating by writing, I was considered a good listener. I was someone that felt activity in the outside world tended to lead to a decline in energy and motivation, requiring opportunity for inner thought and reflection in a more quiet environment to recharge.
It felt incredibly accurate. Further research was illuminating and again was like reading about myself. It was refreshing and settling that I could just allow myself to be this way and not force myself to be something else, someone else.
So, for the record…
I do like to talk, I talk when I have something to say and avoid small talk. I could talk you to death if I’m engaged in a topic I’m interested in.
I’m not shy. I’m not necessarily afraid of people. What I need is a reason to interact.
I’m not rude. I often don’t see a reason for beating around the bush with social pleasantries. I want everyone to just be real and honest.
I like people. I intensely value the few friends I have. I can count my close friends on one hand. If you are a friend, you probably have a loyal ally for life.
I do like to go out in public. I however like to avoid the complications that are involved in public activities. I take in data and experiences very quickly, and as a result, don’t need to be there for long to “get it.” Then, I’m ready to go home, recharge, and process it all.
I don’t always want to be alone. I am perfectly comfortable with my own thoughts. I think a lot. I daydream. I like to have problems to work on, puzzles to solve. But I can also get incredibly lonely if I don’t have anyone to share my discoveries with. I crave an authentic and sincere connection with one person at a time.
I’m not weird. I just don’t follow the crowd. I’d prefer to be valued for my novel ways of living. I think for myself and because of that, I often challenge the norm. I don’t make most decisions based on what is popular or trendy.
I’m not aloof. I am a person who primarily looks inward, paying close attention to my thoughts and emotions.
I know how to relax and have fun. I typically relax at home or in nature, not in busy public places. I am not a thrill seeker or adrenaline junkie. If there is too much talking and noise going on, I sometimes shut down. Introverts and Extroverts have different dominant neuro-pathways.
I cannot “fix” myself and become an extrovert. A world without Introverts would be a world with few scientists, musicians, artists, poets, filmmakers, doctors, mathematicians, writers, philosophers and counsellors.
I am who I am and have a better understanding thanks to Jung.
Self exploration. Try the personality type test here.