grub + travels + perspectives

Hi! I'm Trish and I'm an introvert.

Imagine someone introduced his/herself to you this way. How would you react?

I found this engaging comic strip shared on social media about introverts. Some blogs call it the "Introversion Bubble." In the world we live in today, there's just a constant need for labels... basically, for everything. It's actually not bad because at some point, a person realizes that, "Hey, I'm not just the only one experiencing this." You get to identify and come to terms that your certain trait or behavior is not unique to yourself. But in most cases (just like in introversion and extroversion), it always seem to be the opposite ends of the spectrum, there's always a clear cut. There are no in betweens, as depicted by most infographics, online quizzes (haha) and some blogs. But the reality is most of us are actually somewhere in the middle.

And just a disclaimer: my opinions are not of an expert's. How I deal and feel about personality traits may be different from people. In short, just my two cents!

I've never really come across the term introvert until I was in college. You could say I'm a social little bee during high school, but, in college, I had a little struggle coping up. It must be the familiarity. I was surrounded by people from the same community and the same people then I went to college where I basically knew no one.

I can't really call that a trigger or that's the exact point when it started because, let's be honest, everyone goes through the same thing. Change happens. It's just that I realized, I guess, people have different ways on dealing with it. People have different perceptions of change, of adjustment, of accepting the new.

According to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, I am an ISFP. So yes, the I there says I am introverted. Yes, it is true. I am at most times quiet around people I don't know, I suck at small talk, and being around so many people isn't something I always look forward to. I won't give a list in bullets on how you're an introvert or how to live a better life because there's so much out there to read that, quite frankly, paints a not so pretty picture on how an introvert or extrovert is. There's this one that (I don't know if it's intentional) shows that introverts are like a snob, whiny pity party and extroverts are so full of themselves because they just like to be around people for attention and can't stop talking. Seriously, this needs to stop.

This strip by this Dr. Carmella does have its good points but there are some parts that I totally don't agree on (but please don't make this "THE" guide to understanding introverts.) First of all, hamster ball? Hahahaha. Also, it is said on the comic strip that "Because this energy source is limited, they tend to see extroverts as obnoxious predators out to steal their sweet, sweet energy sources. That's why they have the hamster ball of personal space." So. not. true. At least in my case. All of my closest friends are in fact extroverted. I seem to jive more with them because they have a 180-degree different approach than me. I learn from them and they learn from me. And it's really fun to be around people that you could try new things with. Obnoxious is not a term I would associate with extroverts. Moreover, predator. Never. Isn't that a bit harsh?

"It is important for introverts to feel welcome--they won't spend their precious energy on someone who doesn't want them around." These points make introverts sound like privileged, you're-not-worthy-of-our-energy people that can't cope up with the real world unless everyone adjusts around them. Being around an introvert doesn't involve everyone walking on eggshells. This comic isn't necessarily wrong but it does suggest that introverts need some kind of special treatment. No.

The terms introvert and extrovert are already out there. It is a fact (though we may never know the most concise definition of each which is very prone to misunderstandings.) But the truth of the matter is, at some point in our life, whether you're the former or the latter, you will be required to do something outside your comfort zone because you need to, because it is never really us versus them, because it's more than just you and your 'trait.' While I do appreciate these reminders and acknowledgment of differences in personality, we are all more than acronyms from a test, we should never use it as an excuse to live our lives. We should never hide behind it. I know it's easier said than done (especially for extreme introverts) but the key there is to try. Small steps.