Let’s start with a short quiz:
When the doorbell chimes, you:
1. Leap from your chair, tap dance to the door, and welcome an unexpected social interaction.
2. Scurry to a place of maximal concealment, hold your breath, and pray the caller goes away.
When the phone rings, you:
1. Grin widely, pump your fists, and chirp “hello” before the answering machine picks up.
2. Startle like an idiot, stare at the device while your pulse normalizes, and let voicemail do the rest.
If you answered #2 to both questions, welcome to my world.
Avoiding doorbells and phone calls are vices I never would have dared admit B.S.C. (Before Susan Cain). But since reading Cain’s book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking, I understand the stunned-rabbit response is not a weird-Carrie thing.
It’s a normal-introvert thing.
That doesn’t mean I can’t conduct phone calls or deal with unexpected encounters—I hold up just fine in a professional setting. But at home? Unless you’re a delivery person or an urgent phone call, don’t expect my greeting.
Introverts don’t like talking on the phone or answering the door. Ha. All this time I thought it was just me.
So, to my fellow introverts, here are a few other normal traits you might possess:
- You think text messaging is the best invention of the twentieth century.
- You become so engrossed in your work, you soon resemble a corpse.
- You loathe small talk but enjoy imprisoning a friend or family member in deeper discussion.
- When put on the spot, you wish you had five minutes to type out a response rather than speak it.
- You’d rather labor by yourself than with a group, even if the project takes twice as long.
- While deep in thought, you find hand grenades less annoying than repeated interruptions.
- You prefer working on one job at a time; multi-tasking is a pain.
- You need twenty-four hours of solitude after two hours of socialization.
- You feel a deeper response to a sad story than anyone else in the room, but you’ll never let on that you do.
- You’d rather suffer a day-long wedgie than listen to someone else’s T.M.I.
- You appear aloof to others when really, you’re just lost in your own cerebral world.
- When Facebook creates a video montage for all their users’ private profiles, they can’t create one for you. Because you only have six pictures in total. Which they’re kind enough to send you anyway.
That last one might just be me. Thanks, Facebook. As if I didn’t feel awkward enough.
So if you experience some of the above, don’t despair. You’re not weird.
You’re just an introvert.
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