Extroverts and Introverts: Get Along Already!

There has been much ado about this whole business of Extroverts and Introverts lately among my social circle. It seems that in society at large, The Introverts have been getting quite an upper hand (check out this TED talk), or at least are finally getting the respect that they need.

We live in a share-all, mix-and-mingle country. I went to a writers’ conference last year and on the last night they had a huge cocktail party for all the writers to meet and greet. *Coughs…* Excuse me while I go try and make sense of the universe all over again. Aren’t writers famous for being introverts?

So it was an uncomfortable experience for me. And it’s just another testament to how people try to “fix” introverts by having them to parties, making them go out on the town, bombarding their free time with telephone calls and fill-in-the-blank. How many times have you heard someone discussing how an introvert needs to “come out of his/her shell?” Introverts have a shell because they have a soft and tender interior that needs to be protected. That’s why we’d rather stay home and drink tea and read books for hours instead of going out in public where [whispers] we might have to talk to people!!!

Seriously, it’s not that we’re agoraphobes, it’s just that we enjoy our own company and the company of a few close friends.

Anyway, enough with my rant, I really can’t say anything that hasn’t been said a thousand times over already.

What I really came on her to say was that when the world was made of water and wind, air and earth, light and dark, and day and night, it was also made with introverts and extroverts. We weren’t made to criticize each other and fix each other. We were made to complement one another and work together in our respected gifts.

So many times we introverts love to talk about how wonderful we are and how the world would be so much more peaceful if everybody were an introvert. (And I’ve been guilty of this too!)

Hey, some of my bestest friends have been extroverts.

Extroverts, you have something wonderful to offer to the world. And while your kind has ruled this nation for generations with a fist of confetti, and the introverts are gaining social revenge [he he he], you are still amazing people and we need you!

So be the people you need to be, everyone will be much happier. Just…don’t be surprised if I don’t go to your 300-person party tonight, because I’ve got a date with myself and I don’t want to disappoint me by standing myself up.

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4 thoughts on “Extroverts and Introverts: Get Along Already!

  1. Sometimes I can’t decide whether the internet is there to make my introverted life easier, or harder. It’s like the 300-person party is right in my doorway. All the time. And I can choose not to engage … but they’re *right* *there*. O.O

    • I believe the Internet has really allowed Introverts to become more Extroverted in ways. The Letter used to be the Introvert’s ideal form of being extroverted…I call to the witness stand the hundreds of long letters between loved ones that were written, commonly, every day. But with the Internet, the Letter died out and now Introverts turn to WordPress, Blogger, and Tumblr to fulfill their introverty-extroverty needs. (It’s more of a slider than a lightswitch…I think many of us could agree that there is such a thing as too much of an introvert or too much of an extrovert!)

      Oh, and it’s more like a 300,000 person party on here. O.o

  2. I’ve definitely felt the need to ‘come out of my shell’–as if because i don’t have a huge group of friends I am somehow deficient. Thanks for the reminder that this isn’t the case.
    However, just as a reminder to my fellow introverts, ‘i’m an introvert’ isn’t the end of the road. We can still learn to be great conversationalists and become proficient in a social setting. Heck, since listening is a huge part of communication, maybe we could be better at it than extroverts. : ) May I suggest “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie?

    • I’ve never read that book, but I hear it commonly invoked among philosophical circles. The book that really helped me was “How to Talk to Anyone” by Liel Lowndes. There are ways to be a great conversationalist while still being a fantastic introvert. :)

      Thanks for “visiting!” (And by the quotation marks, I mean that in the “real” world we’re both in our own little homes. This is so ironic.)

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