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 Post subject: Are you an Introvert?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 3:54 pm 
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These posts are from another thread that I thought deserved it's own title. I put them together here so maybe we can have a conversation about the topic at hand.

I was reading cnn.com and ran across an article titled "Introverts Run the World." I've known for a long time that I'm an introvert, but I didn't have a full appreciation of just what an introvert really is. After reading that article at cnn.com and then spending the rest of the afternoon learning (obsessing!) about introvert behavior, it dawned on me that being an introvert probably had a great deal to do with my wd being pretty harsh. Apparently, introverts spend a great deal of time in thought (I honestly thought everyone did that?), they spend a lot of time in reflection (I thought everyone did that too?). When someone is in wd and they're spending most of that time reflecting on how their feeling....well, it's like a feedback loop. I also learned that there is really no such thing as a person who is 100% introverted or 100% extraverted. These traits are measured on a kind of sliding scale, with almost 70% of the population falling somewhere in the middle (ambiversion). From what I've learned and understand about introversion/extraversion, I am firmly in the introvert camp.

On a side note, my recovery has moved ahead by leaps and bounds with this newfound knowledge of my introversion. For the longest time I've been trying to address behaviors that NA teaches are addict behaviors and all the while those behaviors are due to me being an introvert. For example, what I once considered to be self obsession I now understand is a component of introversion. I'm not necessarily self obsessed, I just enjoy spending time alone with my thoughts just as I enjoy spending time with my family or close friends. Now that I'm no longer beating my head against a wall trying to change those behaviors, things have obviously gotten a lot better.


Taurus Responded:

Introversion


Romeo - I read a book called "The Introvert Advantage" a while ago, and I felt so relieved when I read about how most of my tendencies and how I deal with things is related to my introversion. I had never looked at it that way, I just thought I had something wrong with me. The book helped me a lot in learning how my termerament is the reason for many things I do, and it gave me a totally different perspective on myself. I had so many lightbulb moments when reading this book and I stopped punishing myself for things that I thought were negative behaviors, but are really just the "innie" way of dealing with things.


Romeo Responded

Well hello fellow introvert, nice to meet ya!!

Reading your post made me smile....I was honestly afraid that all I would hear was crickets chirping after posting about my introversion, it's nice to know there are others out there.

I'll be honest, as I started reading more and more about introversion, one of the first thoughts to pop into my head was "Oh Crap".....not only am I an addict, which tends to separate one from society because we're not understood, now I find out I'm a full blown introvert too....like I need another "condition" that's not very well understood by most, thus separating me from society even more. But I caught myself quickly and said a great big "EFF THAT!!!", I gotta keep learning to roll with the punches and learn to accept myself, damn it!

I love how you said "I stopped punishing myself for things that I thought were negative behaviors, but are really just the "innie" way of dealing with things." I'm headed over to Amazon.com to get a copy of that book!

Thanks Taurus.....I was gonna say you don't know how much I appreciate it.....but you probably do!!


Taurus Responded

Reading the book is so worth it! It helped me a lot. Let me know when you start reading it. I just pulled out my copy a few weeks ago and started reading it again because it has been years since I read it the first time. I just wish extroverts in my life would read it! Introverts are so misunderstood by extroverts...they tend to think something is wrong if we don't react to things in the same manner as them. But we just have different needs.

.....pm me when you read the book because I'm sure you will want to talk about some of the things in it! It's very interesting and easy to read.

By the way, the full title is "The Introvert Advantage - How to Thrive in an Extrovert World" by Marti Olsen Laney, Psy.D.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:07 pm 
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One of the things that kinda bothered me whle reading some of the extravert/introvert ideas was the fact that some of the articles seemed to "score" extraverts as happier than introverts, but I couldn't help but notice that the "scoring" system was based on extravert behaviors. For example, one of the "happiness test questions" was "do you like going out and being social".....duh....that's clearly what makes extroverts happy, but it doesn't make an introvert happy. If the question read, "do you cherish your alone time".....all the introverts would be scored as the happiest people on earth while the extraverts would all of a sudden be deemed unhappy.

A phrase I remember from all of my reading on the subject that fascinated me was this: Extraverts don't seem to "get" introverts, but introverts have no trouble understanding extraverts. It would seem that an extravert came up with that "happiness" test I was just talking about.

I'm not slamming you extraverts, not at all, hell, if I had it my way, I'd be one of you, but I'm not. :cry: .... :D

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 5:27 pm 
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I would chose to be extroverted too, if I was given the choice. I am firmly 'in the introvert camp' as well. Although, I can fake it for a while, when I am out in public and need to be extroverted. But this does drain my batteries after some time though. Sometimes it feels like we innies have to get THROUGH life, instead of being able to enjoy life to the fullest. But while reading the book, I realized that being introverted can be something to celebrate, if you look at it from a certain perspective.

Here is an excerpt from the book that I think describes it the two in a nutshell:

"Introverts draw energy from their internal world of ideas, emotions, and impressions."
"Extroverts are energized by the external world-by activities, people, places, and things."

Of course, it expands much more on these thoughts, but just reading and learning about the differences between the two really helps you be able to understand why certain people do the things they do, and how to relate to and have empathy for others who are on the other side of the continuum.

I hated it in school when teachers would make us do oral reports. That was like pure torture for me. (These teachers were obviously extroverts! I would never make a student do that!) I always wondered what was wrong with me when there were so many students who seemed to thrive in the limelight and like getting up in front of the class, making jokes, talking freely, getting the attention that they obviously craved.

I read that "Carl Jung believed that it is harmful to push a child outside of the natural range of his or her temperament, thinking this would violate the individual's innate disposition. He even thought that this could be the cause of some mental illness." This made me feel better about myself, that I wasn't some kind of freak with a disability or something.

I always try to remember that we, as introverts, have strengths that some extroverts don't possess. Our traits just aren't recognized as highly in society. It is usually the "go-getter" that achieves the most success in life. I guess it all just depends on what you call success. Some might define it as financial freedom, a high paying job, having a lot of friends, a lot social events to go to, etc. Others might think of it as having a successful healthy relationship with your significant other, a lower paying job doing something that you love, having just a few close and deeper friendships, and lots of free time to be alone and do something like art or a hobby that you get fulfillment from.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 10:51 pm 
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WOW!!!

WOW, WOW, WOW.....all I can say is WOW!!

My book came in the mail today, I've only read about 40 or 50 pages, but WOW!! The title of the book should read, "Romeo, this is the owners manual you've been searching for for so long."

As an introvert, trying to fit into an extraverted world is difficult, but this book has some great tips on how to manage that.

This book would also be a good read for you extraverts who have introverts in your life. Do you have a spouse or a child that's introverted, then you should check out this book, you're guaranteed to go AHA a few times.

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 6:14 am 
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Amazing. This time, i have no word for it. Its WOW!!!


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