The Social Introvert

-David Mein

For this post, I want to address the stereotype that introverts don’t like to go out. This is not true at all. It’s entirely possible to be an introvert and enjoy a night (or day) out.

Remember what makes an introvert an introvert. It’s not that we don’t like to socialize, it’s that socializing costs us energy. The analogy I like to use is exercise. Whether you go to the gym or play some kind of sport, when you’re doing it, you have fun. At the end, however, you’re tired and need to rest. Going to a party, for example, is like that for me. I enjoy it, but when it’s over, I need to rest.

When introverts socialize, though, it can be a bit different. Introverts tend to prefer smaller, more intimate settings. I always enjoy dinner with two or three friends, but a group of ten, for example, can get to be a bit unruly. In situations where there are a lot of people, I tend to find a small group (much easier when there are already people there I know) and stick with them the whole night.

There’s also that point when I know I’m “peopled-out.” When this used to happen, I thought I was just tired and I would stay, trying to start having fun again. Now, though, I know what’s going on, and I know there’s no use in staying, so now I just go home when I hit this point, I just go home. This doesn’t mean that I haven’t been enjoying the party up until then, it’s more like I’ve run/swum/whatever as much as my body was capable of.

Like exercise, though, I do sometimes have to force myself to go out. That is, sometimes I have the urge to just stay home, but I know that if I force myself to go a party, I’ll have fun once I’m actually there.

That said, it is true that introverts are often the type that prefer quiet nights alone at home to noisy parties. I enjoy nights like that myself. The point of this post was just to make it clear that introverts can be social, too.

 

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