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During one of the harder times in my life I found Brenda’s website
and reached out to her. To say the least it has been one of the best
decisions I have made. Being an extrovert I never quite understood
what it meant to romantically involved with an introvert. Brenda does
an incredible job listening, giving in the moment feedback, and helped
me understand the how an introvert functions. She helped explain to me
that I am introspective extrovert, and this gave something to identify
with and allowed me t…
Evan H.
That courage and dedication you so generously share with the world, has inspired me to push myself a little harder, persevere at each task a little longer, dig a little bit deeper to where the answers just “feel” right to both my humanity AND my spirit. Your insights have reinforced my direction and given me additional tools that help me clear my path. I’m wired into my creativity as never before and the new music is pouring out of me faster than I can record and produce it; this is the Un…
Gary
your depth of understanding, and talent at sharing it amaze me. Speechless… and for your sharing of it.. Thank you… deeply. *sigh, its like coming back into my body through acceptance….. Sherrie on space2live
Sherrie

“I was struggling with my daughter (16 at the time) and our constant fighting. You said something to me that changed my life! You were speaking about your own situation and you said to me “my child could not handle my emotions”. This was a HUGE “lightbulb moment” for me and it forever changed the way I dealt with my emotions when I was around my daughter!

I am happy to say that things have never been better between my soon to be 18 year old daughter and myself! I honestly never thought we would…

Mom M
You’re so honest in your writing. It’s bold. It’s frank. It’s wonderful. I could definitely see the work you are doing here as a useful book. It could save/make a lot of relationships! — Jimmi Langemo
Jimmi Langemo
Brenda has truly opened up a space for introverted types on the ‘net, and her self-revelations are always inspiring. Her voice is one I always look forward to. She is one of the writers that actually played a part in my return to writing.  — S.E. of Sunflower Solace Farms
S.E. of Sunflower Solace Farms
Your words are my lifeline.  I sit down to your posts and as I read I can feel my acceptance of myself and my needs grow.  Your words validate my feelings about my life, motherhood, relationships and it is something I hold onto.  And during the times when I feel like I am not able to be a mother or a wife or a sister or a friend or whatever someone needs me to be, I go back to your words and find some peace…I send your posts to my husband when I need him to understand that I love him but I need …
D.R.
THANK YOU….. you just summed up my swirling thoughts into something i can read with out everything else in my head meshing with it. I finally feel like i can explain what happens within without getting distracted. I’m an Introvert with ADD and it makes it so hard to explain quite what im feeling sometimes. — M.G. on space2live
M.G.
I met Brenda and took the MBTI… I had a fairly good understanding of these types before the meeting but was impressed by the depth of knowledge that Brenda shared with me. She clearly has a passion for this work and a gift in imparting the information. There have been doors opened for me because of our talks… — Alan Hintermeister
Alan Hintermeister
I have been dating an introverted man who I am very in love with for almost 2 years.  Reading your posts have helped me to be more supportive and understanding to him especially during the times when he needs space.  I just wanted to thank you for your weekly posts and let you know how helpful they are for someone who is in a relationship with an introvert. C.M. on space2live
C.M.

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There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert.

 

It is 2006 and I have everything.  My husband is making professional athlete money as an executive at a hedge fund.  We have three healthy, beautiful, active, children.  We recently moved into a spacious and impressive home.  I am getting to know people by throwing dinner parties for my husband’s co-workers and attending neighborhood Bunco nights.  I have the life my mother always dreamed of and yet here I am sitting in a thin revealing gown on the sterile, crinkly white paper of my physician’s exam table asking for something to give me energy, return physical desire and stave off depression. The doctor writes a prescription for the anti-depressant Prozac.  I avoid eye contact with her as my face grows hot.

I have help cleaning the house and watching the kids.  I have so many external gifts that I must be absolutely perfect in my performances as wife and mother.  There are no reasons why I should not be able to design and juggle magnificent schedules, have profoundly happy children and a well-decorated home. And yet I find myself being short with the kids, emotionally overwrought and just plain sad.  I have no drive.  I tune out some of the noise and requests of me in order to get through the day.  I vacillate between extreme sensitivity and dull malaise.

The Prozac prescription comes with just enough stigma and fear of losing control to wake me up.  What is wrong with me?  Why am I failing when I have so much?

Self-Diagnosis: Introvert

Over the next year, I make it a priority to make space for me.  I don’t know it, but I am straining to hear my inner voice.  After much soul searching, many hours running on the treadmill, a few guitar lessons and a writing class, I notice a link to the website, IntrovertEnergy.com in an email from a former writing instructor.  I am curious, so I click on it.  A few more clicks and I am taking a self-assessment for introverts.  Do I find these statements to be true?

When I need a rest, I prefer time alone or with one or two close people rather than a group

When I work on projects, I like to have larger uninterrupted time periods rather than smaller chunks

I can zone out  if too much is going on

I don’t like to interrupt others; I don’t like to be interrupted

I can become grouchy if I am around people or activities too long

I often dread returning phone calls

I am creative/imaginative

I form lasting relationships

I usually need to think before I respond or speak

Yes, to every one of them!  Like a lot of people, I thought introverts were awkward, anti-social and reclusive.  I love people and visiting new places, so it did not occur to me that I could be introverted. My assumptions changed as I conducted a deep investigation into the ways and wonders of introverts.  As I uncovered truths about the introspective temperament, I discovered I AM an introvert, what that means, why it is a good thing, and how to navigate in an extroverted world.

What the Experts Say

All of us have introverted AND extroverted traits.  Temperaments exist on a continuum with one of the psychological types dominating.  According to The Introvert Advantage, Marti Olsen Laney’s bestselling book on the characteristics of introversion, 25% of all people are introverts.  A statistic from a 1998 Myers-Briggs computation of I or introverted personality types showed the introvert population to be as high as 50%.  Either way, chances are you or someone you know well, is an introvert.

Contrary to popular belief, introverts are not all shy bookworms.  The difference between introverts and extroverts is not social skills.  It is the way they recharge or gain energy.  The revered psychologist, Carl Jung, was the first to coin introversion as, life defined by the pursuit of solitude.  Introverts renew in solitude, from within.  Extroverts thrive on external stimulation.

The United States is especially keen on the extrovert persona.  In the U.S. it is cool to be an extrovert, wired for sound and pumped up by activity.  Our nation was built on rugged back-slapping go-getters who lived for adventure and mastery of the environment. Say the word introvert though, and blushing nerds with concave posture and faint voices come to mind.  This misleading perception and lack of understanding has led to the introvert playing the underdog for too long.

4 Things about Introverts Most People Do Not Know

1.      It is an innate temperament.  It is not a choice.  Introvert’s brains map differently.  The Introvert Advantage talks about the brain composition of an introvert. The dominate pathway of blood flow is longer and more complex.  Introverts use long-term memory more, therefore retrieving information takes longer.  The introvert brain integrates complex intellectual and emotional information better but requires more time.  It is not uncommon for an introvert to go blank when called on unexpectedly only to have the perfect response surface later.

The primary neurotransmitter circulating in an introvert’s main brain passages is acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that produces a good feeling when a person is thinking or feeling.  Extroverts have more dopamine in their primary pathways.  Dopamine is associated with movement, learning, and attention.

Introverts also tend to use the parasympathetic (put on the brakes) side of the autonomic nervous system while extroverts employ the (give it gas) sympathetic side resulting in more caution and less impulsiveness for the contemplative crowd.

I dreaded the improvisational part of my 7th grade drama class (no advance notice, quick thinking) but had no problem memorizing 100 lines for the starring role as a hillbilly.

In guitar lessons, I overthink and my fingers shake when I try to emulate the chords, melodies and strumming patterns of my teacher.  I have found it to be very helpful to write them down and practice at home. Being observed and asked to perform on the spot is difficult.

2.      Our primary source of energy comes from within.  Introverts find satisfaction in thinking, feeling, dreaming, and ideas.  Introverts are rarely lonely when they are alone. Solitude is where we find the quiet necessary to tap into the inner well and achieve clarity.  Many introverts need long blocks of uninterrupted time in order to complete a project or renew themselves.  We may appear to be aloof or self-centered but in truth we are mulling over the activities and conversations of the outside world to see how our internal world compares.  In making the universal more specific, introverts are able to put themselves in others’ shoes, one of our strengths.  This is not to say that introverts do not enjoy connecting with people.  We are just more comfortable cherishing and nurturing fewer intimate relationships.

Even though I become physically depleted while running, I step off the treadmill energized because my imagination bubbles up while I exercise alone.

I get up early in order to have time to write uninterrupted.

3.      External stimulation drains our energy.  The inner-life of an introvert is already so rich and complex that outside activity raises our level of arousal quickly.  Marti Olsen Laney (The Introvert Advantage) compares stimulation to tickling.  At first it feels good and exciting but after a while it is too much to handle.  Extroverts get pumped up from hits of socializing, technology and activity but introverts can easily become overwhelmed.  Crowds, noise, interruptions, back to back activities and chaotic environments are huge energy drains.  Each bit of stimulation takes our tank of energy down a notch until we are existing on fumes.  The antidote to large doses of stimulation is to withdraw to a tranquil space.

If there is no opportunity for renewal, we may feel like our brain is numb.  We may speak slower and take longer to gather our thoughts due to the longer neural pathways bottlenecking the processing of input. We may feel embarrassed or guilty because we cannot keep up with the fast paced, driven world.

Hours of back to back activities, cell phone calls, email chimes, and non-stop chatter render my brain a rubbery frog in formaldehyde.

I have an especially tough time in the summer when my three children are home.  Long days of constant stimulation leave me feeling like a wild rabbit in a cage, longing for the peace of the quiet woods.

4.      We prefer depth to breadth.  Introverts go deeper with fewer subjects and fewer relationships. Since energy is limited it is necessary for introverts to zero in on what is meaningful and beautiful.   Introverts enjoy pondering, exploring and savoring.  We like to take in outside information, mull it over and expand on it.  Part of the reason an introvert’s brain gets muddled is because they want to process every bit of data completely, chewing and digesting each morsel.  Too much information, just like too many people, can be hyper-stimulating.  At a party you will most likely find an introvert in a corner with one or two people in a meaningful conversation.  Small talk does not light up an introvert’s heart or mind.  Although an introvert may hesitate to speak about topics outside their knowledge, if given the chance to speak in a comfortable atmosphere about a subject near and dear to them, we introverts can talk for hours.  Visit any coffee shop to witness this phenomenon.

I used to get anxious before business dinner parties at our house.  I knew the small talk would be flowing and my mind would be preparing for evacuation.  I can only talk about schools, pools and kids’ camps for so long before I zone out and appear to have nothing to say.

I have researched and written about introversion extensively.

The Best Medicine

Like most introverts, I felt it was right to be busy and surrounded by people. I attempted to be extroverted.  With three children and a husband around all the time there was no escaping the crowd or high levels of stimulation.  I could not digest all the input and was wracked with guilt because of it.  I had to save myself and my family from breaking down.  According to Psychology Today’s 2010 article Revenge of the Introvert, Researchers have found that introverts who act extraverted show slower reaction times on subsequent cognitive tests than those allowed to act introverted. Their cognitive fatigue testifies to the fact that acting counter-dispositionally is depleting.

I began to recover by getting out of the house occasionally and engaging in purposeful (to me) activities involving a limited number of participants.  I started with personal fitness training (healthy, produces endorphins and one on one), moved on to guitar lessons (I feel music deeply and found an excellent introspective teacher), and then leapt to writing classes (who is more thoughtful and contemplative than writers?).

I stopped throwing dinner parties for large crowds of individuals I barely knew.  I found close friends in the meaningful activities I had chosen.  Although I prefer one on one time with companions, I know I can handle groups of think first, then talk people.  I even get energy from them.

As far as clearing the fogginess from my head, I have learned to manage my energy rather than my time.  I understand I have to incorporate renewal periods into my day.  I play on the computer, ask for help (very difficult), go for a walk, talk with a close friend , take a long shower ,exercise, meditate, read or nap when my circuits begin to overload.

I find comfort in knowing I am not alone by reading Caring for Your Introvert by Jonathon Rauch of The Atlantic.  It is hands down the most comical article detailing the traits of introverts. When Jonathon is not quoting Sartre, Hell is other people, he is reminding extroverts of their counterparts, Remember, someone you know, respect, and interact with every day is an introvert, and you are probably driving this person nuts.

Healthy Attributes

I still have days when I feel limited by my temperament.  When I do, I re-visit the special powers of introverts:

·        Rich inner life

·        Vivid imagination

·        Never bored

·        Rarely lonely

·        Foster deep relationships

·        Know themselves

·        Help others filter and slow down

·        Empathic

·        Independent

·        Able to concentrate for long periods of time

I never filled the Prozac prescription. Being a conscious introvert (term coined by Nancy Okerlund, life coach to introverts) gives me a sense of relief.  Ironically, I am soothed by knowing I  am NOT alone.  Being comfortable in my own skin (seeing it as normal skin) and appreciating the creative, contemplative and independent aspects of my nature gives me the strength to remove ill-fitting extroverted armor. I can bear being exposed as an inward thinker, non-joiner, and elusive type.   I am able to look people in the eye and say, I am an introvert.

 

Please share if you liked this. 🙂

If you enjoyed this post you may also like:

Introvert Relationships: Love Me or Leave Me but Please Don’t Need Me (Too Much) – space2live

Introverts Explained: Why We Love You But Need to Get Away From You – space2live

In Defense of Introverted Parents – space2live

What’s Wonderful? Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking -space2live

Introverts Do It Passionately and Creatively: How It’s Possible to Love Solitude AND Be Popular – space2live

 

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100 Comments

  1. Lee Lindsey March 13, 2017 at 6:54 pm - Reply

    Hello All,
    Briefly I would just like to ask if there’s any information or reference about introversion in a young person? I am beginning to see introvert characteristics in my 16 year old son. He will just be starting his first job, he doesn’t have a full relationship yet and he of course has no children so explaining much of the introvert information he can not quite relate to just yet.

    • Brenda Knowles March 14, 2017 at 11:12 am - Reply

      I would still point him in the direction of Susan Cain’s book, Quiet (I know other teens who have read it) or the website, IntrovertDear.com or even space2live.net (shameless plug;). He could start by doing a Myers Briggs assessment on 16personalities.com or personalityhacker.com. It’s always affirming to know your personality is how you’re wired and that there are others like you.:)

  2. Mitchell December 3, 2016 at 4:46 pm - Reply

    I just started my first semester in graduate school (Writing & Rhetoric Studies). During my small seminars, I find it *so* difficult to orally articulate my thoughts. Consequently, my self-esteem took a nose dive; I started doubting my intellectual ability, and whether or not a career in academia was a good fit for me.

    I’m almost 30 years old and just *now* realized I’m an introvert, through and through. It’s really comforting and helpful to view myself from this new perspective. Thank you for posting this, Brenda.

    • Brenda Knowles December 4, 2016 at 8:49 am - Reply

      I’m so glad you found this post helpful. Yes, introverts often struggle with off the cuff remarks, especially with an audience we don’t feel safe with or know well. I bet you will find more comfort and skill with practice, a supportive audience and when speaking about subjects in your wheelhouse. Do what you find meaningful and it will become easier.

  3. lani May 5, 2016 at 6:34 am - Reply

    Hi just want to thank you, for your post. I knew long before that I am an introvert but I hated myself for it. I thought there is really something wrong with introverts, and people around me keep telling to change myself, for the better. And it’s really true that I find peace when I am alone. I easily felt tired with people. It was also a relief for me knowing that usually introverts goes blank when asked some unexpected question. I really thought there’s really something wrong with my brain, because I am like that too. I only come up with a perfect answer after thinking alone and absorbing it. I am always confuse with my ability, I’ve got good grades but I am really dull when it comes to oral recitation, it’s soo hard for me , And because of that I lost confidence ..

    • Brenda Knowles May 5, 2016 at 10:19 am - Reply

      Lani I’ve been hearing a lot lately about introverts being told to change themselves and become more like extroverts. There is nothing wrong with you! You are more sensitive to stimulation and you recharge in quiet settings. Research shows up to 50% of the population is like you. You don’t see them because they are pretending to be something else. Going against your nature is particularly draining. I suggest finding a circle of kindred spirits who accept and foster your spirit and personality. Introverts, especially sensitive ones, thrive in non-confrontational, reassuring and reflective environments. We live in our heads and hearts. Our most important work is done internally prior to releasing it into the world. Extroverts have a hard time processing information unless it’s out in the world for them to interact with, even their own voice and thoughts are understood better by them if they’ve put a voice to them. It’s difficult for them to understand our way of being. All of us tend to devalue what we don’t understand. I guarantee you will blossom and feel more confidence if you find a tribe of people who think and work like you do. That is not to say we can’t bond well with others of different natures, but to get your confidence boosted I suggest prime it with understanding from those who ‘get’ you. Think about where you feel most at home or most alive. Go there and see who you find. Sending you a big warm hug and a heap of understanding. You are not alone.

  4. […] a bit burnt out on all these energy draining first dates so I don’t intend to go on any other dates, […]

  5. […] There’s Nothing Wrong With You. You’re an Introvert. – Brenda Knowles […]

  6. virginiacyclist February 1, 2016 at 8:01 am - Reply

    Excellent!

  7. virginiacyclist February 1, 2016 at 7:40 am - Reply

    Hi. I am an extreme introvert, which has plagued me in family life and work. I can say I had issues being present for people when I needed alone time. I would get irritable and I know I hurt people I pushed away. My advice is to try to overcome those tendencies with all your will because being a decent human who meets obligations requires it. But you need to be psychologically kind to yourself and so, others around you must not judge so long as you do your part. One way of being kind to yourself is understanding that extroverts too have their issues, like crowd-think. I am not a believer in the I am ok, you are ok, mindset. Actually all people are highly imperfect and the task in life is not to always be oneself, but look in the mirror, see the weaknesses and then try to overcome them with all the tools available. The trick is to stay away from excessive self-criticism, which can be a form of negative narcissism. I hope this helps. No one is perfect.

    • Brenda Knowles February 1, 2016 at 7:54 am - Reply

      I would say we are all imperfectly OK. It is never OK to intentionally hurt someone but it is good to have boundaries and honor your needs. There are differences between extroverts and introverts. Taking the time to understand and appreciate them is important. All of our relationships involve working with others different from ourselves. If we can show some compassion, understanding and empathy for the others’ plight then we are doing our best. I believe it’s fair to ask the same in return. That’s maturity and evidence of a highly developed human. Thank you for bringing up that extroverts have issues too. We all do. I don’t believe being introverted is a weakness or something that needs to be overcome. I think awareness, understanding and acceptance are key both of yourself and from others. I had enormous guilt/shame around needing time away from my children and for being short with them when I was overwhelmed. I did everything I could to figure out how to remedy that behavior. As they got older and I became better able to articulate my needs, things smoothed out. I have very strong and meaningful relationships with my kids. I had to learn how to do that in alignment with my introverted nature. I’m still a work in progress but there are ways to integrate your nature with your relationships.

  8. Lee January 30, 2016 at 2:43 pm - Reply

    I am beginning to realize that THIS is so me! I am a mom to 2 young kids, both are VERY chatty, VERY energetic, VERY busy all.the.time. They are 18 months apart. I am 5 years into being a stay at home mom and I keep wondering why I still feel so crowded, depleted and like they drive me mental a lot (love them to death and I am grateful for them but it is SO overwhelming). This has given me a good glimpse into myself and has made it easier to understand why I struggle so much. Thank you!

    • Brenda Knowles January 31, 2016 at 8:24 pm - Reply

      Lee you’re not alone.:) It is my experience that it gets easier. My kids are now 12, 14 and 16. My home is much more restful, calm and fun. They’ve matured and I don’t feel so drained by them. Our conversations are meaningful and I truly enjoy their company. Sending you peace, patience and strength. And a hug!

  9. […] I am an intuitive was as big as discovering I am an introvert. As an INFP personality type, my spiderweb thinking, lack of interest in mundane practical things, […]

  10. Kimberly September 13, 2015 at 3:18 pm - Reply

    I honestly believe that being around people that do not respect me or value me as a person has MADE ME the introvert that I am today. It is good to know that I am not alone. I used to think that I had a chemical imbalance in my brain and that I was depressed and had Social anxiety. I just know that if I could remove the toxic people from my life ( FAMILY..not as easy as it sounds) that I would have less stress. I am happy with the person that I am. Just hate it that I have family that would love to CHANGE ME. I am not going to change. THIS IS ME.

    • Brenda Knowles September 14, 2015 at 8:27 am - Reply

      I understand how difficult it is to live in an environment where your nature is not respected or appreciated. It is highly stressful, a battle every day. Keep on being you and gather friends around you who are supportive and understanding. Know you are whole and good, despite how others make you feel. I always think to myself, ‘As long as I am a good person, that’s what matters.’ You will evolve and blossom and the people in your immediate circle will not like that. They won’t like the changes but that’s OK that’s your growth and they can’t stop that. Stay positive and find work and passions that make you feel alive. Find others who open you up instead of shutting you down. This will take some bravery but it’s worth it. Sending you strength and peace. I know how you feel.

  11. […] – There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re An Introvert. […]

  12. indepthwoman June 19, 2015 at 11:52 am - Reply

    Hi Brenda,

    That is one of the first things, that I have to mention when I tell people about myself is that I’m an introvert. So they know first hand, how I am and if they are unfamiliar, then I will give them resources to do their own research….The same thing happened to me, I refuse to perform in drama class in H.S, but knew my lines, as well as everyone else’s….I remember everything and people always ask me how?? I always remember what people say to me and when they said it, on what day and year. I’m very meticulous and have a photographic memory…Men in the past tend to get upset when I remembered something they said. lol That’s only because they were trying to play me and didn’t want to be held accountable for anything, lol…

    I resonate with this whole blog. Sometimes it gets really frustrating, explaining to people that I need to be alone and they try change me or tell me I need help. I hear, i’m never going to get married or have children because I’m an introvert. I don’t feel the need to fit in with society like that. I asked my drama teacher was something wrong with me, because of my increased dopamine levels and she said no. The way I hear and process music and just that whole mental stimuli. I also Identify as demisexual. I need a strong mental spiritual connection with the opposite sex. I love men but their looks have no bearing on how I feel about them, unless i get to know them. Its hard for men to be just friends with me. People act like there is something wrong with me, because I don’t gawk at a handsome man. It takes more than that for me.

    I will forever be grateful for finding this blog aswell as others because this resonates with me so much.

    • Brenda Knowles June 20, 2015 at 2:12 pm - Reply

      I’m so glad you found space2live. It is still difficult to explain to people when you need time alone, but I’m hoping with the increase in introversion awareness, one day it will be as natural as you want to go out with your friends.

      I also have a strong need for mental and spiritual connection prior to physical and sexual attraction. Like you, my mind needs to be turned on first.;)

      Thanks for your thoughtful comments.

  13. DANI June 2, 2015 at 10:00 pm - Reply

    After 49 years of trying to figure myself out, so much of this blog describes me! I always just thought I was a strange person…. thanks for sharing. Ha I always mean it when I say I never get bored, it’s so true.

    • Brenda Knowles June 3, 2015 at 9:53 am - Reply

      You are not strange and not alone in your way of being.:) I’m thrilled you found space2live.

  14. P.R. Janssen May 27, 2015 at 8:23 pm - Reply

    Reblogged this on The Whim Wryter.

  15. anonymous January 12, 2015 at 9:24 am - Reply

    You are so amazing for these posts. I can’t begin to say how much I needed to read these words. Thank you, so much.

  16. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  17. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  18. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  19. Alexis Jennings November 16, 2014 at 9:53 pm - Reply

    Again, I greatly appreciate what you are writing here. I have not understood myself and my own needs for a very long time. One thing that I need help with, is finding ways to enrich my life, and nurture my introverted self, on a budget. Or should I say, no budget. We are living on a single, very low income…and as much as I may want to get a fitness trainer, take guitar lessons, or even find a writing coach (you hit all my wants right on the head) I don’t have the money for these things. And my body rebels when I try to make myself a morning person when really I’m a midmorning person and have been all of my life. I also am a stay at home mom. (I commented about that on your blog about being an introverted parent.) and I just find that I don’t have the opportunity to recharge. What can I do. I’m in the living room now…escaped the bedroom where my husband retreated, just so I could be alone in peace today. But I’m so tired from the day, that I hardly know what to do with myself other than read your newly discovered blog. Which is actually just what I needed. But how can I make our situation work for me now? My daughter won’t be going to school for two more years and my son will be two years after that, if I’m lucky. I just need a chance to be me. And how to I explain that to my husband of 8 years who I still think doesn’t “get me”? A little help would go a long way if you have the time. Thanks again. You are a God-send to me today.

    • Brenda Knowles November 18, 2014 at 9:58 am - Reply

      There are ways to enrich yourself while living on a budget. I realize not everyone can take part in some of the extras I’ve been fortunate enough to experience. My budget is now tighter too so I have to be creative about stoking my creativity.;)

      The cheapest and easiest way I enrich myself is reading. I read whenever I can – online, books from half.com. Reading fills me up and inspires me.
      I have been part of a writing group – 6-8 women who get together and respond to prompts from our leader through writing. Some examples of the prompts are: The last time I was really angry… or I love…. We write and then read out loud (if we want). It’s essentially a therapy group but it’s cheap. You could do it for free. It lets me go introspective and gives me connection with people like me. We meet once a month. You could even do intuitive writing at home by yourself. There are books of prompts. There are probably even some online. Tell everyone you’re writing and take an hour to yourself. It definitely puts you in touch with your inner world and your ideas.
      Do you have meetup groups in your area? They are usually free or inexpensive. Just google meetup groups for your location. I have a friend who has no money and she attends a French group weekly.
      Could you join or create a playgroup with your kids? I was part of a fantastic group of stay at home moms when my kids were little. The kids played and the moms got some intellectual stimulation. The trick is to find the right group of adults. We met every Friday at someone’s house. Snacks were provided by hostess but nothing fancy. It sounds like socializing and it is, but it was a breath of fresh air in my week.
      I do volunteer work that allows my kids to tag along with me. We have delivered food to people with chronic illnesses. Again, it’s an outing but it’s doing meaningful work and I’ve met very cool people through the charity.
      Those are only a few suggestions. I’ll continue to noodle over options on a tight budget.
      Notice the places, work and people that make you feel crazy alive. When does time fly? How can you spend more time around them? That’s a good place to start for increased personal expansion.
      Best wishes, Brenda

  20. Aislinn October 17, 2014 at 9:20 am - Reply

    This article really spoke to me. There is a lot of really important and interesting information and I really identified with it. Not understanding my introversion has been a big source of sadness for me but am now coming around to the amazing qualities introverts have. Thank you for this.

    • Brenda Knowles October 19, 2014 at 3:44 pm - Reply

      I hope you keep discovering more about you and learn to value your nature. We may run counter to a lot of cultural expectations but perhaps the expectations are the issue. I think society’s norms are changing. Peace and strength to you.:)

  21. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  22. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  23. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  24. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  25. […] are stuck-up, shy, weird or crazy, it’s actually not something we can help. According to Brenda Knowles of space2live.net (a wonderful resource for introverts and extroverts who live with introverts), introversion is an […]

  26. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  27. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert.(space2live) […]

  28. […] 2. There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  29. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  30. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert.(space2live) […]

  31. Angi October 22, 2013 at 9:17 am - Reply

    Really enjoyed this post. You described me to a tee. After years of pushing myself too hard and being constantly on the go, I have finally discovered that I am an introvert and need to treat myself as such. I have probably told you this before, but just had to say it again. I feel validated as a person every time I read your work. Thank you!

    • Cheryl October 22, 2013 at 11:10 am - Reply

      So glad you used the crisis to gain deeper self understanding! Depression can be an invitation to go deeper. It’s not a bad thing!

      • Brenda Knowles October 22, 2013 at 1:59 pm - Reply

        So true! You get a lot of thinking in when you feel down. All you want to do is move through it. It takes personal awareness and innovation to move out of it. When you hit bottom you have to figure out how to bounce.;) Thank you for your thoughtful comment.

    • Brenda Knowles October 22, 2013 at 1:57 pm - Reply

      Woohoo! You are uber validated here! You are beautiful in your thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Honor them. You matter deeply.:) The world needs you and your introverted ways.

  32. Booker October 4, 2013 at 12:05 pm - Reply

    I just discovered your blog after searching for “need to live alone”. I realize I AM an introvert, even though I LOVE people and want to be with them…..on MY terms.

    I give, give, give until I feel and act like a zombie. Then I switch sides, give only to myself, and take without giving back….I become mean, silent, angry, not a nice person….and this can last for months. I see the pain this causes my wife, and that causes me even more pain because I know I’m hurting her. It’s a vicious cycle that–I now realize–has been repeated in each romantic relationship I’ve had. I’m unable to find a balance between giving to others and giving to myself, so I ignore myself.. However, my closest friendships are thriving–and I’m convinced it’s because of the times I DON’T spend with them. Absence really DOES make my heart grow fonder.

    Since discovering the REAL definition of “introvert”, I’ve realized I have not “recharged” my batteries in over 6 years. I am no longer able to handle living with another person, and a few hours here or there of solitude make me feel minutely better–until I have to be with her again. It’s not enough. I feel the need to be alone for LONG stretches of time (6 months or more…..still being social, not ignoring my friendships, but having a space to retreat to that’s ALL mine…..). I love her, I want the marriage to work, but I can’t do it anymore. And I don’t think I can actually heal myself unless I end the relationship, whether temporary or permanently. And, of course, trying to heal myself is hurting the person I love.

    • Brenda Knowles October 5, 2013 at 10:22 am - Reply

      I understand you. I also know how hard it is to admit that you need/want to be away from your partner for long periods of time. It goes against what we are supposed to want. During the end of my marriage I used to dream of taking off for a year and traveling. My guilt for this was compounded because I also have children but there still was that deep longing for space and time and socializing on my terms.

      Giving until the well is dry is exhausting.

      How much does your wife know about introversion? Is she an extrovert? Perhaps if she had further awareness about introversion she might be more willing to let you take time to yourself (like a month or so). I read a book called, A Year by the Sea by Joan Anderson. It might resonate with you. The wife separates from her husband for a year. It gives her a chance to develop herself and find perspective.

      I’ve often wondered if married couples took a year off from each other if that would re-energize their relationships. Would that prevent a divorce or let the individuals drift farther apart?

      Know you are not alone in this strong need for solitude or selective socializing. Communication and awareness are your best tools for working with your wife. Let her read some of the posts on space2live.

      I’m sure you have tried shoring up your boundaries. It’s difficult to say no but in your case it could be essential. Explain to your loved ones your need to say no in order to be your best self.

      Thank you for your honest comment. Please keep us posted on your situation. Sometimes doing what’s best for you makes it better for everyone else.

  33. […] An introvert is someone who answers yes to many of these questions: […]

  34. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. […]

  35. Susan August 25, 2013 at 10:31 am - Reply

    Hi there, I am a resounding introvert and have been hounded by my colleagues about holiday plans and weekend plans for the last 15 years. Even now that I am a University lecturer and the holidays are even longer I still don’t make plans with anyone until I am truly ready and can go over 10 days at a time without feeling the need to meet up with anyone. I sometimes feel extremely lucky to have such understanding friends but the truth has also been that I’ve lost friends along the way due to my need for ‘alone time’ because of the energy draining job I have. I fear I now don’t have enough of a support network and, being the introvert I am, don’t seem to be able to make the effort to go out and cultivate new relationships (particularly when it seems the majority of people I come across naturally want to talk in the ‘chit chat’ way which I find exhausting) I feel as though I am in a vicious cycle – would anyone be willing to offer advice to help me ?

    • Brenda Knowles August 25, 2013 at 4:09 pm - Reply

      There is definitely an ebb and flow in many introvert’s need for connection. We relish solitude but then after a while we desire companionship. It can be confusing and/or disappointing to friends who cherish our presence.

      My first thoughts in response to your request for advice regarding building up your support network were:

      1. Is it possible to make your job less draining? Could you build in empty hours in your schedule so that you can recharge? Is a lecturer the same as a professor? Could you do more work from home?

      2. I have found lifelong mates in the places where I feel most at home. For me those places were: A writing center, a music school and a fitness class.

      3. If you find one good friend who aligns with your nature they can lead you to other individuals with whom you feel comfortable. A linchpin person.

      4. Share awareness and knowledge regarding introversion with your closest people. Helping them see introversion is a hardwired personality trait may ease their feelings of rejection.

      5. Perhaps you go away during the holidays and avoid all the invitations.:)

      I understand where you are coming from and hope you find the interaction balance you seek. May others read your comment and offer a response.

  36. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. (space2live) […]

  37. Vyckie August 11, 2013 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    This article is really good. I know Im an introvert for a long time but its always nice to read more about it when people around me make me feel like a freak for wanting better to spend the weekend alone after a tough and exhausting week rather than exhaust myself some more with more social interaction. I cant function without my music, my writing and all my me-stuff. Raising kids takes almost all my energy so I love the weekends when theyre at their dads and I just stay by myself doing my kids alone all weekend! It makes me feel so good but then when my roommate starts looking at me like Im an hermit , I start thinking about going out with a friend. Sometimes I daydream about a world where everybody gets me and I don’t have to answer the I dont understand you’s and are you okay’s and could just spend my life there. I tend to glow and be in awe with the most simplest things and get confused with extroverts point of views but its always nice when I find someone like me that I can connect with and talk about things that matter, that’s what lifts me up!

    • Brenda Knowles August 11, 2013 at 8:42 pm - Reply

      I am so with you.:) I love an empty afternoon or evening or even a whole day. Music, writing and me-stuff is so energizing. I need all the energy I can muster. Raising kids takes a good portion of my fuel. I have to re-charge in low stimulation. Hugs to you. I get you.

  38. KJP August 10, 2013 at 6:41 am - Reply

    Thank you so much for this article! I knew I wasn’t an extrovert but I had never really given it much thought. I often wondered why I was regularly so exhausted trying to keep up with my friends social life and amazed at their seemingly endless energy. I even went to doctors thinking there must be something wrong with me, either anaemia or depression…surely something could fix me!
    I feel relief that I am an introvert, I’m not shy but I enjoy my own time. I love being home alone and I feel comfortable enough in myself to be able to retreat to my solidarity when I need it. Even if it means missing out on social events or even work oportunities. Other people don’t understand sometimes but that’s fine, ultimately I have to look after myself first then I’m able to be the best friend, family member or partner that I can be 🙂

    • brennagee August 10, 2013 at 5:41 pm - Reply

      You are wise KJP to know what you need and go for it. It takes courage to do that sometimes. Keep on being authentic and true to yourself. You will glow with satisfaction.:) Thanks for sharing your story. I totally thought there was something wrong with me too and asked a doctor to help. Nope, just needed a break from all the noise and people.;)

  39. EmSpeaks June 28, 2013 at 8:46 pm - Reply

    Someone on Tumblr linked to your blog, and I am now spending my evening reading it and rejoicing that you put into words many things I have been trying to articulate. I am an introvert (and a shy one too, alas), and have been all my life. At age five, I spent every afternoon after kindergarten playing quietly with my dolls—alone and fully content.

    The most helpful part of this post: “Small talk does not light up an introvert’s heart or mind. Although an introvert may hesitate to speak about topics outside their knowledge, if given the chance to speak in a comfortable atmosphere about a subject near and dear to them, we introverts can talk for hours.”

    This. Is. Me. Thank you so much for this. I have been trying to build new relationships, especially at my church, and my impatience with chit-chat has left me feeling like I’m a bad person. I loathe small talk and feel like I will go insane if I have to hear too much about the children I’ve never met of acquaintances I barely know, or someone’s new curtains. I know those things are important to some, but all too often I feel out of my depth. I’m always eager to deepen relationships, but I want to do that by sharing ideas and experiences, or discussing hopes and goals for the future, and I get frustrated when conversation never goes beyond the new restaurant in town or a great thrift-store purchase.

    • brennagee June 29, 2013 at 11:34 am - Reply

      I just figured out the small talk/frustration connection a few years ago. My mind and spirit want to soar on meaningful topics like the ones you listed – ideas, hopes, goals, inspirations, feelings, etc. It amazes me how many people are content sticking with inconsequential topics far removed from their inner most dreams and ideas. I suppose ‘heavy or big talk’ is draining to others. Honor the differences and seek out the company of those who energize you I guess.;)

      Thank you for your comment. I think we are kindred spirits. I love your writing too! Also, I spent many many hours playing with dolls when I was a girl. Such quiet companions, so willing to listen to our thoughts.:)

  40. Lucy May 16, 2013 at 6:21 pm - Reply

    I was forwarded to your website by a Yahoo Answers helper and boy, am I grateful for their mention. When I read through these introvert articles and now finally know WHY I am seen as “different” or “difficult to understand” to family and friends, I just sat and cried for a few minutes because after all of this self-hate, all of this “the only way to solve your social problems is to be more social – interact with public, make phone calls more”, at last I can respond with a simple answer: I’m an introvert. The ironic thing for me is that I think I like to hang out with extroverts best! Is this expected of us introverts? I do have an incredibly close friend who I think must also be an introvert, but the problem is that sometimes we run out of things to do because neither of us will encourage the other to go out into the “real world” or out of our comfort zones. I’m certain that my mum’s an extrovert. She’s absolutely lovely but, much like my previous self, she doesn’t understand why I’m different. She always tells me that I am this way because I don’t get out enough, or I don’t challenge myself enough. She even wrote me a challenge list, including challenges such as running a stall at the local school fair, joining a badminton club and applying for a job at a garden centre. But these all throw me right off…too many people! Too many minds to try to predict and tend to all at once. I can understand why she’s doing this – she only wants to help! But I can now tell her that we can stuff the challenges because I need a different approach.

    A big giveaway to me, after reading these articles, that I am an introvert is that I’ve always seemed to be noticed for my intense deep thinking, ability to put myself in other’s shoes and creativity. The factors that made it click for me most, however, were that introverts seem to blank or take longer to respond when being confronted unexpectedly. I do this so very often and sometimes people would think me rude for blanking them. I’d feel embarrassed and under pressure so I would babble out a quick answer which I had not applied enough thought to – the result? A load of gobbledygook which causes the person expecting an answer to exhibit a very blank, confused expression. This made me begin to question if I had some sort of mental disability.

    The funny thing which relates yourself (author) and I is that I also felt exactly the same way in drama classes! I ended up getting a much better grade than expected in drama class; perhaps the teacher saw something in me which I could not see. Now that I come to think of it, I suppose I was never short of a drama/dance partner. I enjoyed coming up with creative dancing and acting ideas but when it came to actually performing them without enough practice, or even a script, this made me dive into a “flight” response and I’d often fake illness to get the day off school when we were expected to perform for an examination. It brings me great happiness to have learned such a key detail about myself which, without the help of YH Answerer and yourself, I probably wouldn’t have learned until a much later stage of life. Cheers to a less stressful and less confused life!

    Thank you for writing these articles, thank you so much.

    • brennagee May 17, 2013 at 9:11 pm - Reply

      Oh I am soooo happy to hear that my little blog gave you a wonderful understanding of yourself.:) Please never feel “less than” because of your deep introspection and lack of quick responses. I bet you have so many introvert gifts, like a rich inner life and amazing listening skills.
      The solution to not feel different is definitely NOT being more social and forcing yourself into agonizing situations. Do what you love and you will soar as well as connect with like-minded individuals.

      Extroverts tend to worry about us because we don’t want to be constantly surrounded by others. They see it as anti-social and worrisome. We’re aren’t necessarily anti-social, just selectively social.

      I also love to be around extroverts. We tend to do more active adventurous things and that propels me into new experiences. I admire their enthusiasm and sometimes their energy is contagious. I also love my introverted friends. We have the long deep conversations and lovely quiet downtime watching movies, going for walks or reading.

      I have a thing about being observed when I am performing or speaking. It unnerves me a little which is why I had a hard time with guitar lessons and improvisational acting. If I have an abundance of time to prepare I am much more comfortable.

      Thank you for sharing your story. I am thrilled you have unraveled some of the mystery of your temperament. Embrace it and go forward. It’s a whole new world. Exploit your beautiful nature. I’m glad Yahoo Answers led you to space2live. 🙂

  41. […]  There’s Nothing Wrong with You.  You’re an Introvert (space2live) […]

  42. Christine April 19, 2013 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    I was in my 40’s before I realized that there was nothing wrong with me. I watched Susan Cain’s Ted Talk and read her book, “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking” and finally realized that I’m introverted, not depressed, anxiety ridden, anti-social or less intelligent than others. I’m terrible at making extemporaneous speeches, but I can speak at length when well prepared. I prefer to observe from the outside rather than jump in head first. Stressful situations make me fall asleep. I can’t multi-task to save my life. I’m uncomfortable in new situations with new people, but I have a wicked sense of humor and have a great time with close friends. The idea of going to a party fills me with such trepidation that I have to mentally prepare for days, all the while thinking of reasons why I can’t make it.
    As it turns out… I’m normal and there are millions of people just like me.

    • brennagee April 19, 2013 at 5:36 pm - Reply

      Isn’t it flipping incredible to know you are not alone? I am so like you. Even better to know – there is nothing wrong with your ways. They are just different than the culturally emphasized extroverted ones. In fact, there is a lot of value in introspection. Carry on and live vividly! Thanks for sharing. Truly appreciate it.:)

    • Kristen August 21, 2013 at 12:05 pm - Reply

      Christine, you just described my 16 year old daughter exactly! As an extrovert mom, I am REALLY trying to understand her! (“What do you mean you want to stay home and practice piano instead of going out with your friends?” “You don’t want to go live in a dorm? I LOVED living in the dorm!”) She has shown these traits from INFANCY! I remember taking her to my husband’s basketball game when she was only weeks old – she promptly fell asleep. And her first Gymboree class when she was 18 months old? She surveyed the entire hour, but did not participate until the next week. She is bright, talented, beautiful, and FUNNY – so it surprises me when I hear people describe her as “shy.” We decided this year to have her drop an AP class so that she could come home an hour early each day so she has time to be alone. While it went against her perfectionist tendencies not to “do it all” it has been wonderful to see how much happier she is by not having such a harried pace.

      • Brenda Knowles August 21, 2013 at 6:58 pm - Reply

        I love that you are so in tune with your daughter’s nature and needs. Kudos to you for creating an extra hour of space for her at the end of the day. Brilliant.

    • Manoj September 20, 2013 at 12:08 am - Reply

      You’re reply really touched my core, I too spend great time with my close friends and they too appreciate it. Also now I can generalize introverts have good sense of humor and have their own pace to do the things.

      • Brenda Knowles September 20, 2013 at 3:03 pm - Reply

        Thank you for letting me know my writing touched you. That makes my day! Be well and honor your? introversion.:)

  43. carter April 10, 2013 at 7:59 pm - Reply

    This article made me shed a few tears. Good ones though. I’ve been hopelessly jumping from one medication to another trying to “fix” me. In fact I havean aappointment in the morning to tell my doctor again that this stuff doesn’t work. I feel relieved right now that there are people that feel the way I do. Good read.

    • brennagee April 11, 2013 at 12:12 pm - Reply

      I so don’t want you to feel broken. The primary message I want to spread via space2live is that you are wonderful and valued with your introverted traits. I know so many of us feel compelled to be the constant extrovert because that’s what successful looks like in most cultures. Being true to yourself and honoring your needs for space and solitude will enhance your way of being and outlook. Don’t feel less than or guilty about your true feelings. Find a circle of kindred spirits and solidify a safe place to BE. These are the best gifts in the world. You are embraced here on space2live. Thank you for sharing so candidly.

  44. Discover April 6, 2013 at 10:34 am - Reply

    Thanks for sharing.
    Very similar to my own experience.
    Attempted to be party of the life extrovert subconsciously because I was surrounded by the majority of extrovert society and brought up that way. Always thought that’s the way to be.
    Now that I found out I’m an introvert and there’s nothing wrong with it, I’d stay true to myself.

    • brennagee April 6, 2013 at 8:40 pm - Reply

      Introverts are cool! 🙂 Enjoy all the gifts introversion brings. Ability to concentrate, good listening skills, depth of curiosity, long term/meaningful relationships, rich inner life, etc.
      I spent my childhood trying to be outgoing like my sister. She got a lot of attention so I thought that must be the right way to be. Now I know her temperament isn’t better, just different. Sigh… it’s a grand new world.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  45. hafong March 27, 2013 at 3:45 pm - Reply

    Interesting that I’ve come across your blog! I am, at the moment, reading Quiet, the Power of Introverts in a World that can’t Stop Talking, by Susan Cain. Wishing that I could have found both a little sooner. Would have saved myself a lot of angst. But if wishes were horses…..

    • brennagee March 28, 2013 at 8:48 am - Reply

      Susan Cain’s book is so validating. Be sure to check out her TEDtalk too. I love the saying, When the student is ready, the teacher appears. You must be ready for all this introversion material now.:)

  46. Samantha March 24, 2013 at 12:19 pm - Reply

    I’m an introvert rather firmly, but I’m personally fine with large crowds and small, intimate parties. What will tire me out in an hour flat, so much so that I’m falling asleep on the couch because I can’t keep awake, are the medium sized parties half-filled with people I don’t know but am still expected to interact with at some point. Thank you very much for writing about these kinds of things. I’ve read a couple of your articles on here and I’m very glad you do so much research for the rest of us. It’s helped me explain to myself, as well as others, that it’s perfectly fine to not want to be with others all the time and sequestering myself in my room or some other isolated area doesn’t actually make me wrong.

    • brennagee March 24, 2013 at 5:54 pm - Reply

      That is my most urgent message – It’s OK to desire alone time. There is nothing wrong or bad about you if you need that space.

      I like your point about medium sized parties being the most draining. There are expectations at those. You should mingle because you know a lot of people and you COULD get to know the rest. There is meaningful intimacy in small parties and lovely anonymity in huge parties.

      Thank you for commenting and reading. I appreciate your insight.:)

  47. melaniea73 March 10, 2012 at 9:24 pm - Reply

    “Their cognitive fatigue testifies to the fact that acting counter-dispositionally is depleting” YES! Cognitive fatigue….so it is a real thing 🙂
    I go to a weeklong yoga conference every year – by myself – and I decided this year to get a single room so I could ‘process’ at the end of the day.

    • brennagee March 10, 2012 at 10:09 pm - Reply

      Yes, I know I get rubber brained when I have to be “on” for too long. I need to find myself a week long conference with a room to myself. Sounds like heaven. 🙂 Thanks for reading and commenting.

  48. […] in Your Traits: Stop beating yourself up about what you are not or what you can’t handle.  Focus on where you shine.  Growing up I often felt like I was less than enough because I wasn’t as confident and […]

  49. […] to over-stimulation and conflict. I knew roughly 25% of the population recharge in solitude (see There’s Nothing Wrong With You. You’re an Introvert.) I had also discovered friends with the same temperament.  When I was with them I felt understood, […]

  50. […] 1. There’s Nothing Wrong with You.  You’re an Introvert […]

  51. […] consumed in a flash if we feel we have to speak or act hastily, loudly and often. As I mentioned in There’s Nothing Wrong with You.  You’re an Introvert, introverts recharge in solitude.  We get energy from feelings, impressions and experiencing […]

  52. […] There’s Nothing Wrong with You. You’re an Introvert. (space2live.net) […]

  53. Jessica Nelson August 15, 2011 at 1:35 pm - Reply

    I’ve tested as an extrovert in tests in my earlier days, but as an introvert since having kids. I still need to go out and live it up once in awhile, and feed off that crowd energy when I do, but since life has brought me to a place where *when* I go out is no longer on my terms, I have a harder time enjoying it these days, and take much longer to recover afterward. This is another reason I need to move back to the Cities; I only get to see people outside my family once a month, so I feel I need to squeeze in as much as I can in only one or two days, and it’s draining. This past week in Chicago followed by one night in the Cities with Bear’s business contacts (at a nightclub, no less) just about killed me, and by the time I arrived on my grandma’s doorstep at 3am I was in tears. It’s going to take me a month to recover. I have to face it – once an extrovert is not always an extrovert. Life changes us. Thank you gor always being so insightful, just when I need you. 😉

    • brennagee August 15, 2011 at 3:36 pm - Reply

      That is so interesting that your testing results have changed since you have had children. I have read that we all become more sensitive with age. I know that is true for me. I also love to go out and kick up my heels. I do find energy in that sometimes, especially if it involves music. Music and deep companionship seem to combat the mental and emotional fatigue to a degree. I wonder if being more isolated (I have days to myself when the kids are in school) has an effect on how much stimulation we can handle overall. I understand the world tour craziness that occurs when you go home to see family. I have the same situation when I return to Michigan. I usually come home less overwhelmed though because my parents live out in the country and life is slower there. Thank you for reading and commenting Jessica. Your perspective is refreshing and much appreciated.:)

  54. BeccaFetz August 14, 2011 at 12:05 am - Reply

    Wow..all this time I didn’t know that I was an introvert or had introvert traits. Every one of the descriptions were ME!! When you were speaking about how you felt..I could relate so much..its like you were speaking the words for me. Thanks so much for sharing this sis!! :)))

    • brennagee August 14, 2011 at 4:50 pm - Reply

      In this crazy, fast paced, hyper-stimulated world I think more and more people are craving the introvert lifestyle – less noise, more space, more peace. I recommend you take the assessment, http://theadventurouswriter.com/blog/test-introverted-personality-traits-introversion-signs/. It’s more comprehensive than what I listed. I know you have introverted traits. Just knowing that can help with figuring out how to manage your energy. The Introvert Advantage is a good place to start researching. For me, it explained a lot about myself and the extroverts in my life. It shed some light on relationships. I’m so glad this post resonated with you. Thank you so much for reading and commenting Becca.:)

  55. brennagee August 13, 2011 at 2:22 pm - Reply

    Also, both groups have the ability to benefit from each other and the world. We need both warriors and advisors to keep humanity evolving.

  56. Diane August 13, 2011 at 10:03 am - Reply

    An introvert myself, I use solitude, contemplation, yoga and meditation to recharge myself. Indulging this side of me allows me to more freely appreciate and enjoy the colors and layers of the world of the extroverts (there is a very teeny bit of that in me too).
    I really appreciate your passion to educate on introversion. I think many would find relief from feeling a sense of dispossession if they understood and embraced themselves.
    I’ve recently been following Susan Cain and am looking forward to her upcoming book. I’ve linked her blog here if you are interested : )
    Haven’t see you in ages ! I’ll make do with sending you a virtual hug right now! Miss you – I hope to see you, my happy introvert friend, soon !

    http://www.thepowerofintroverts.com/2011/06/19/introvert-vs-extrovert-survival-strategies/

    • brennagee August 13, 2011 at 12:26 pm - Reply

      Diane I am so happy that you have found ways of renewing yourself. You are right, after you have recharged it is easier to explore the “colors and layers of the world of extroverts.” Sometimes it’s hard for the extroverts in our lives to understand this need for space.
      I love the Susan Cain website! I especially appreciate her “16 things I Believe” sidebar. I also plan to look into the concept of orchid individuals/children. Thank you so much for reading and sharing. You always have good meaningful comments.:)

  57. connie August 13, 2011 at 9:24 am - Reply

    I read a quote, and it goes like this….”When the voice and vision on the inside, becomes more profound and clearer than the opinions on the outside, then you’ve mastered your life.” How does this apply to you? Your voice and vision of you, is having the personality of knowing you’re an introvert, and your finding this to become more profound or clearer inside of you (that’s why your writting about it), therefore you are starting to not care or mind the opinions of the outside. How great is that!! 🙂 Continue to be you, because the opinions on the outside truly doesn’t matter. I embrace you as you are, not what your not.

    • brennagee August 13, 2011 at 12:08 pm - Reply

      I love that quote Connie. I do feel like I have been going through a process of peeling off my outside layers and honing in on the inner voice. My ideas and self are becoming more crystallized.:) Not fearing so much what others think is freeing. I still feel raw and exposed sometimes, but I also feel like my inner core is more steely. Thank you so much for your kind and insightful words. And by the way, I GAIN energy in your class every week even though it is a large group and there is lots of music and stimulation. I think the music (love), few people I connect with (meaningful), dancing (beauty)and the endorphin rush make it therapeutic. Thank you, thank you.

  58. lindaknowles August 12, 2011 at 8:56 pm - Reply

    I tell you, Brenda, this hit home, how refreshing. Your mother and I both enjoyed your communicative insight. I’m proud of your art of teaching, you’re fabulous. Your writing is successful, you stay in the mind long after reading you. You are dearly loved. Bill and mom.

    • brennagee August 13, 2011 at 11:59 am - Reply

      Thank you. Resonating through writing gives me the greatest joy. My heart feels a little bigger and a little lighter.:)

  59. vivian August 12, 2011 at 4:55 pm - Reply

    hi
    Very interesting! I think it’s great how you researched this topic to help your psyche. I’m not sure if I’m introvert or extrovert, or part of both. Our last book club leader would always take a week vacation by herself and go to a beach somewhere to be alone. I could never understand it, but now I see it must have helped her cope with her life. Could you see yourself doing an alone trip?
    love aunt viv

    • brennagee August 13, 2011 at 11:50 am - Reply

      I could definitely do an alone trip. I’ve daydreamed about going to a cabin in the woods, a retreat in Santa Fe or even just an apartment downtown that I could go to and write, read and catch up with myself. I have only seen you in extroverted settings – large family gatherings. Do you collapse after everyone leaves or are you ready to move on to the next social engagement? “Innies and Outies” both have amazing strengths. I so appreciate your comments Aunt Viv.:)

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