Tuesday, February 18, 2014

6 Confessions from a Closet Introvert

Image by Stuart Miles from Freedigitalphotos.net
 I have some confessions to make.

1. I am an introvert. I label myself a closet introvert because most people who know me in real life would be surprised to know that I am an introvert. Sounds a little strange, doesn't it? I work really hard to step outside my comfort zone to engage with other people. I teach a ladies' Sunday school class at my church. I sing in the church choir and in a small ladies' ensemble. I've even auditioned for some solos at church. It is HARD for me to do these things naturally.

2. Digital communication is much easier for me than interpersonal. It's far easier for me to send a text, email, or Facebook message than it is to make a phone call. It gives me time to get my thoughts organized. It's funny that I feel much less of an introvert when connecting with someone on Facebook or through blogging connections than I do when I'm having a face to face conversation.

3. I crave approval. Because I'm stepping outside of my comfort zone, I look for approval to make sure I'm doing things well (or even doing things correctly). It makes it worthwhile to hear that I did a good job on something.
4. Having a handful of my own children doesn't mean I am good at handling lots of children.  Even though I was a classroom teacher for many years before I decided to stay home with my own children, being around a lot of children at one time tends to overwhelm me. Mostly it's because of the noise. Even my own small people tend to generate more verbiage than I can handle most days.

5. Engaging with other people makes me tired. When I step out of that comfort zone, it takes a lot of energy. Here's an example: This past Sunday I taught my Sunday School class, sang in the worship service, engaged with my small people all afternoon, and finally entertained the girls' varsity soccer team that hubby coaches. By the end of the day, I was exhausted.

6. When I interact with people, I do so because I WANT to. If I spend time with you, it's because I care about you. I want to invest my time in you. Even being an introvert, other people are important to me, and I make every effort to make my relationships meaningful.


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