Crowded parties or meetings often might feel like a holding cell to an introverted person, even as they sportingly up their end of the chatter. “Walk in and say hi. Interact with people and be open,” are just some of the things uttered to introverts, as if you can snap out of it. The walk-into-a-room-and-find-a-corner type of personality is frequently misinterpreted as having a social phobia, shyness or even avoidant personality disorder. The Daily Vox busts five myths about introverts.
1. Introverts don’t like to go out in public
Nonsense. Introverts just don’t like to go out in public for too long, since it takes a long while to recharge after socialising and stimulation. Recharging is absolutely crucial for introverts. They also like to avoid the snags involved in public activities. Introverts often opt to stay in because of the pressure to fit in, which they find gruelling.
2. Introverts don’t like to talk or don’t like people
False. Introverts don’t talk unless they have something to say. Get an introvert chatting about something they’re engrossed in and they’ll probably experience verbal diarrhoea. Introverts are comfortable with their aloneness and own thoughts. They don’t see a reason to talk unless spoken to or have something to say. Small talk is a real drag so they often opt out.
3. Introverts don’t know how to relax and have fun
Just because their participation is low in public or at events does not mean they are not having a good time. Introverts are rarely adrenaline junkies and typically relax at home or in nature, not in busy public places. They tend to shut down if there is too much talking and noise going on around them. Their brains are too sensitive to the neurotransmitter called dopamine, which helps control the brain’s reward and pleasure centres.
4. Introverts can “fix themselves” and become extroverts
The brains of these two personalities work inversely even though they’re not wired that differently. One major difference between the brains of introverts and extroverts is the way we respond to dopamine. In fact, both introverts and extroverts have the same amount of dopamine available but it is more active in the brains of extroverts than in the brains of introverts. An introvert can practise behaviours of extrovert but cannot change their basic nature, therefore introverts cannot “fix themselves”.
PS, introverts don’t need fixing in the first place.
5. Introverts are shy
There’s a difference between being shy and being reserved. The latter describes most introverted personalities. Introverts like to keep to themselves and not involve themselves too much in other people’s businesses. The difference between shyness and introversion is that shy people are startled by social contact, introverts aren’t.