Monday, 6 June 2011


I am an introvert. I think this is pretty clear to anyone who knows me and I was not surprised to find that I scored as "clearly" introverted on a Myers Briggs Personality Type Indicator years ago. What I did discover during the MBTI day was that it is not as simple as liking parties or not, but to do with gaining and being drained of energy. For an introvert like me, other people are great fun but take up energy. It is alone time, silence and personal space that recharge me. My friend Lucinda embraces her introverted nature and takes steps to order her life in a way that takes that into account. Inspired by her, I purchased "Introvert Power" and it has been a revelation. Much of what I have read has describes me and makes sense of behaviour I have thought of as, at best, quirky or, at worst, socially awkward. This paragraph in particular made a lot of sense to me:

"In 1967, Hans Eysenck published his "arousal theory" of introversion and extroversion which predicted that ... introvert brains would be more stimulated on an ongoing basis; ... this would explain why introverts pull away from environmental stimuli while extroverts seek out more."

This explains to me my extreme sensitivity to background noise. I cannot have a conversation while there is background music, either I need to turn the music down enough so I cannot hear it, or I want to listen to the lyrics and I find another person talking to me irritating. I love to have music on in the kitchen, but often find my tension levels rising and have to switch it suddenly off.
My desk has been in a busy part of the house and there are many times I have found myself yelling at the children or the occupants of the next room for disturbing me. Last week, we bought a refurbished lap-top and I have turned my bedside bureau into a desk. It is my space and my lap-top and I am typing this sitting on my bed in the peace and quiet of my own room.
As I get to know myself better and accept who I am, I am finding ways of living that suit me better: embracing my introvert nature, understanding it and allowing myself to be this way.

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