STEPHANIE: “11 Things You Should Know About Introverts”

“Small talk with strangers is my kryptonite.”

~Stephanie

 

11 Things You Should Know About Introverts

1) We need to recharge alone

This right here is the cusp of the entire introvert vs. extrovert debate (if there is one, anyway) — Introverts need to be alone to recharge. We tend to get completely worn out by socializing. This is basically what it means to be an introvert.

2) We don’t hate being around people, but we probably hate crowds

I love being with people, but if you drop me into a large crowd I instantly feel like I’m alone and invisible. I try to avoid situations where I feel that way, so I may decline your open invitation to some random event. It doesn’t mean I don’t like to be around you, it just means I like to have more control over my surroundings.

3) We don’t mind silence

I can sit beside you in silence and not think we are having a bad time. This is especially true on road trips and can be a little confounding to true extroverts. For this reason, I especially like going to the movies where it is already considered rude to chat. Rule #1 for dealing with introverts — Don’t tell me I’m “too quiet.” I hate that. Sorry I’m making you uncomfortable, but you really don’t get to decide how much I have to talk.

4) Just because we are introverted doesn’t mean we are shy

Introvert and shy are actually two different things. Google it! In my case, I’m a shy introvert (the double whammy!).

5) We can turn on an extroverted personality when necessary, but it is especially draining

See #1 and #2. I have no problem getting up in front of a group of people and giving a talk. I don’t even get nervous by a question and answer period. But — here is the thing — I will need major recharge time afterwards and I won’t be able to keep up this extroverted illusion all day. I can turn it on to dazzle a crowd, but if you take me out for lunch afterwards, I’ll probably just listen to you talk. I am an excellent listener.

6) We aren’t judging you

See #3. Did I get quiet? Do I have a mean look on my face? I’m not judging you; I’m just wrapped up in my thoughts with my resting-face on. I might have even forgotten you were there. Sorry, just poke me. I didn’t do it on purpose.

7) We secretly love it when you cancel plans

I like being with you, but finding out I suddenly don’t need to be “on” and it wasn’t actually me that backed out? — priceless! Don’t worry if you have to cancel, I’m probably thrilled to be able to stay in my pajamas.

8) We can get very wrapped up in our own thoughts

My inner monologue is epic. When you have a strong monologue constantly running in the background, it is pretty easy to settle-in and listen for a while. I have to work through things in my head before I proceed, so I usually need a few minutes. When I’m ready to move forward though, I am 100% on top of it!

9) We can be pretty bad at connecting

You know when you have had a really bad day and you just want to call up a friend and chat? Yeah, I’m bad at that. I tend to wait for extroverts to reach out and include me, so when the time comes that I need support, I can be a bit lost.

10) We don’t like to hang around

That time after an event or meeting ends and stragglers hang around to talk — yeah, I know this is the perfect time to make more plans, connect with new people, and get involved with future projects, but I really really really hate this. I’m probably already checking my phone in my car before you have even picked up your purse. Small talk with strangers is my kryptonite.

11) We have strong opinions

Just because I have difficultly sharing them sometimes doesn’t mean I don’t have opinions. Give me an extra minute to compose my thoughts and I will continue to push myself to speak up sooner. It is a give and take here.

 

BMSS Addendum by Gregg Prescott:

BMSS Addendum: On #2, we really don’t hate people or crowds… it’s just that most of us are empaths and we absorb everyone’s energies so it’s a lot easier staying away from crowds than being immersed in them. For me, if I were to go to some gala event, you would most likely find me near the outer wall of the room watching everyone and saying very little. Some would call this “antisocial” but as an introvert I know that it’s something that’s misunderstood by those who aren’t introverted.

If you’re an introvert (which is only about 25% of the population), don’t change yourself to appease anyone else. Just keep being YOU!

~ Gregg

 

~via BodyMindSoulSpirit.com

GREGG PRESCOTT, M.S. (IN5D): “Why Are Spiritual People Generally Introverts?”

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by Gregg Prescott, M.S.
Editor, BodyMindSoulSpirit

According to recent statistics, approximately 75% of the world’s population are extroverts but within the spiritual genre, the numbers are reversed, so why are spiritual people generally introverts?

Society tends to mislabel introverts as being antisocial or reclusive, but this isn’t true. As introverts, we tend to speak with like-minded people versus anyone or everyone. Sometimes, we choose not to speak at all. That doesn’t mean we are not interested in what is being said… it means that we would much rather listen than talk.

According to Betty W. Phillips, Ph.D., Psychology, “…introverts have been found to constitute 60% of highly gifted individuals. Einstein was an extreme introvert. In fact, in elementary school he was so quiet and withdrawn that he was actually thought to be ‘dull-witted.’

Often, an extrovert will ask an introvert, “You’re so quiet, what’s wrong with you?” There’s nothing wrong with us! It is difficult for the introvert to understand why everyone isn’t like he or she.

One of the most famous introverts was Gandhi. I seriously doubt if anyone asked him, “What’s wrong with you?” Despite his introvertedness, he was socially available for interviews and public appearances.

The extrovert tends to be more interested in his or her environment and in socializing with other people while the introvert is more interested in his or her thoughts and feelings. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the introvert cannot have extroverted tendencies or vice-versa. It simply means that there are general tendencies that seem to be consistent with both the introvert and the extrovert.

If given the choice, the introvert will prefer to work alone or in small groups than with a large group of people.  The ideal profession for the introvert does not involve being around a lot of people and may include careers in writing, computer programming, webmasters and graphic design.  In the end, the introvert could do virtually any job that an extrovert can do but ultimately, introverts need to find their own space at the end of the day.

Many introverts are avid readers and are constantly studying and researching various topics of interest, including spirituality and metaphysics.  Reading may come in various forms such as books, e-books or internet articles.

Why Are Spiritual People Generally Introverts?

The introvert tends to be guided by his or her higher self in what areas to pursue when researching spiritual and metaphysical topics, almost as if the higher self is guiding the introvert (which it is!).

By internalizing their feelings, the introverts are susceptible to anxiety related issues such as migraines and panic attacks but they are also more apt to find natural solutions on their own before consulting others for their advice.

Because the introvert tends to look within for answers, he or she will find it easier to meditate and to quiet the mind.  The extrovert’s mind tends to remain overactive as he or she will often have difficulty quieting the mind while focusing within.

Another common spiritual activity for the introvert is yoga, which integrates the body and mind while the extrovert is more apt to play team sports.  In yoga, one uses their body as a vehicle for consciousness while in most sports, the body is used as a vehicle for aggression.  Once again, this does not mean that the introvert will not participate in team sports, nor does it mean that the extrovert will not practice yoga.  These are general tendencies that introverts and extroverts exhibit in every day life.

 

The introvert may have a stronger bond with nature as nature may not provide enough stimulation for the extrovert.  You will generally find that people who enjoy hiking are predominantly introverts, as they appreciate the solitude and oneness they receive from being outdoors in whatever particular element of nature that they enjoy.

Stargazing is another popular activity for the introvert for the same reason, as extroverts will become quickly bored with staring at the sky and may not understand how the stars are connected to our bodies and everything that is happening on our planet.

While 75% of the population are extroverts, the introvert needs to remain true to his or herself, despite peer pressure to conform to society. Despite not wanting the acknowledgement or recognition, the spiritualists within this genre are the leaders of tomorrow’s world as we enter a new stage of consciousness and spiritual awareness.

 

 

About the Author:
Gregg Prescott <a href=Gregg Prescott, M.S. is the founder and editor of In5D and BodyMindSoulSpirit. He hosts a weekly spiritual show on In5D Radio and promotes spiritual, metaphysical and esoteric conferences in the United States through In5dEvents. His love and faith for humanity motivates him to work relentlessly in humanity’s best interests 12-15+ hours a day, 365 days a year. Please like and follow In5D on Facebook as well as BodyMindSoulSpirit on Facebook!

JENN GRANNEMAN: “Here’s the Scientific Explanation for Why Introverts Like Being Alone”

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I’m an introvert, so I need plenty of “alone” time. If I don’t get enough, I’m not myself. I feel worn out and cranky. I get short with people, because every little annoyance seems magnified. I want to sneak away and hide for a while.

Spending time alone—reading, writing, or just hanging around my apartment doing nothing—recharges me. It’s like what author Jonathan Rauch writes:

“For introverts, to be alone with our thoughts is as restorative as sleeping, as nourishing as eating.”

Rauch’s own formula is to spend two hours alone recharging for every hour he spends socializing.

Extroverts, on the other hand, actually feel energized when they’re on-the-go or hanging out with others. Many extroverts get restless and bored when they have to be alone for too long. But me? I could spend hours (or days) alone and feel great.

So why do introverts need more alone time than extroverts? The answer is found in the wiring of our brains.

It’s All in Your Head

Our need for alone time has to do with a chemical called dopamine. Both introverts and extroverts have dopamine in their brains, but they respond to it differently.

What is dopamine? It’s a neurotransmitter that helps control your brain’s pleasure and reward centers. It makes us notice opportunities to get external rewards (like money, social status, and sex) and take action to get them.

Imagine you and your extroverted friend are at a bar. You both see an attractive person across the room. Dopamine floods both of your brains as you think about flirting with this person. Your extroverted friend feels a thrilling rush of “happiness hits” from dopamine. But you feel nervous and somewhat overwhelmed. Sound familiar?

This is because extroverts have a more active dopamine reward network than introverts. Basically, they need more dopamine to feel its pleasant effects, explains Dr. Marti Olsen Laney in her book The Introvert Advantage: How Quiet People Can Thrive in an Extrovert World.

For introverts, too much of a good thing really is too much. We feel overstimulated when dopamine floods our brains.

When we spend time alone, we’re not faced with situations like talking to an attractive stranger. Essentially we’re lowering our level of external stimulation. Being alone feels just right for our dopamine-sensitive system.

Acetylcholine Is Where It’s At

Forget dopamine. Introverts would rather bask in another neurotransmitter called acetylcholine, explains Christine Fonseca in her book Quiet Kids: Help Your Introverted Child Succeed in an Extroverted World. Like dopamine, acetylcholine is also linked to pleasure. The difference is, acetylcholine makes us feel good when we turn inward. It powers our abilities to think deeply, reflect, and focus intensely on just one thing for a long period of time.

This helps further explain why introverts like being alone: it’s easier to turn inward when we’re not paying attention to other people.

Let Us Rest and Digest

According to Laney, everyone’s nervous system has two modes: parasympathetic and sympathetic. When we use the parasympathetic side (nicknamed the “rest and digest” side), we feel calm and are focused inwardly. Our body conserves energy and withdraws from the environment; muscles relax, energy is stored, food is metabolized, pupils constrict to reduce light, and our heart rate and blood pressure slow. The neurotransmitter acetylcholine increases blood flow and alertness in the front of the brain.

The sympathetic side is known as the “full-throttle” or “fight, fright, or flight” system. This side mobilizes us toward discovering new things and makes us active, daring, or inquisitive. The brain becomes alert and hyper-focused on its surroundings. Blood sugar and free fatty acids are elevated to give us more energy, and digestion is slowed. Thinking is reduced, and we become prepared to make snap decisions.

Of course, introverts and extroverts use both sides of their nervous system at different times. But just like introverts and extroverts respond differently to dopamine, we prefer different sides of the nervous system. You can probably guess which side introverts prefer: the parasympathetic side.

Are You Getting Enough Alone Time?

It can be hard to get enough alone time. We may feel guilty when we turn down social plans or tell our significant other we want a night to ourselves. However, not getting enough alone time can affect us physically and emotionally. According to Laney, you may not be getting enough alone time if you regularly experience some of these symptoms:

  • Trouble sleeping or eating
  • Frequent colds, headaches, back pains, or allergies
  • Feeling anxious, agitated, irritable, and “snappish”
  • Unable to think, concentrate, or make decisions
  • Confused and discombobulated, as if you are dashing from thing to thing in a blur
  • Trapped and wondering what is the meaning of life
  • Drained, tired, and put-upon
  • Disconnected from yourself

What should you do? Make it a priority to include alone time in your day, even if it’s only a few minutes of catching your breath alone in your car or bedroom. Laney writes, “Many introverts have felt so stigmatized about the private, reserved aspect of their nature that they have not allowed themselves the time to develop effective restorative practices. It’s time to change that!”  retina_favicon1


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