[personal profile] julival2
So there is this little article from the Huffington Post about 23 Signs You May Be an Introvert that is making the rounds on Facebook today. I read it and I have to say that I was NOT surprisingly the opposite of most of the ‘signs’. And I just kept nodding at how the signs matched the people I know who are introverts. However, there were a couple of things at which I had to scrunch up my face and with which I have to take issue.

First, there is sign number fifteen, which says that “you notice details that others don’t.” I’m a big fan of personality tests of the Myers Briggs variety where they measure you tendency to either side of a spectrum for each of four personality categories. Extraversion-Introversion (how one reacts to others), Intuiting-Sensing (environment processing), Thinking-Feeling (processing approach to decisions, situations), Judging-Perceiving (response type). Sign fifteen is really more about intuiting-sensing traits than extraversion-introversion. You can be either E or I and still be a sensor. Intuitors are more about big picture, whereas sensors are more about detail. And it is a spectrum, so a person can be equally prone to both or far to either side. I usually fall hard to the E on the E-I spectrum in testing and slightly to S on the N-S spectrum (they use N for intuiting, since they use I for introversion). And if anybody cares, I split the T-F and fall hard on the J (but I’m trying to work on that).

Second, there are signs seven and sixteen, which are a conundrum for me taken together. Seven says “Downtime Doesn’t Feel Unproductive to You” and sixteen says, “You have a constantly running inner monologue” with the accompanying quote that “most extroverts don’t have the same internal talking as we do.” OK. Downtime feels very unproductive to me. I get slightly tense and uncomfortable when I don’t have anything to occupy my mind. That makes me not an introvert, per this article. But the reason I get slightly tense and uncomfortable is BECAUSE I have a constantly running inner monologue. My inner monologue wants me to be productive. My inner monologue harangues me about being lazy and goes off on abusive tangents if I’m not side-tracking it. That does not recharge me – it causes me a lot of stress. So I either have to be engaged in something productive that occupies my brain or I have to use my ‘downtime’ for reading something really interesting, watching an absorbing movie or show, or making up stories in my head. I make up a lot of stories in my head when I’m cleaning house. None that would interest anyone else in the slightest, but they make me happy. Or I make lists in my head or do long range planning. I cannot relax very well without a good book. I totally suck at just sitting on the couch and channel surfing and watching snippets of mindless TV. It makes me fidgety and hungry. So what does that mean?
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julival2

September 2013

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