I’ve seen an increased amount of articles and discussions about the whole introvert vs. extrovert discussion lately. Mainly, the articles explore how introverts feel in social settings the best ways to make them comfortable. As much as I think it is wonderful that introverts get their voices heard and give people a chance to understand how they think and function, I think there are common misunderstandings about extroverts, too.
I am a very obvious extrovert. I love being around people (not just my friends, all people). I feel my best surrounded by classmates or friends and I’m happiest when I can feed off of the energies of those around me. I just tend to feel more at peace and less in my own head around others.
However, the drawbacks of being extroverted are annoying at best and unbelievably maddening at worst. It is, at times, hard to feel appreciated when everyone around you seems to simply assume that you will always be up to go out or to joke around. I can think of hundreds of times when I’ve simply wanted to go to bed or to relax and watch TV but have felt guilty because someone has asked me to hang out with the assumption that I will never say no.
The thing with extroverts is that we do like to be alone at times. I love sitting at my desk and writing, or laying in bed watching crappy soap operas. Just because I like spending time with you, doesn’t mean I always want to.
Another common issue that extroverts deal with is the assumption that just because we are always friendly, it seems like we are always flirting with someone. So many times I’ve been called out by friends or my family for “flirting” with waiters or baristas when I’m simply acting the way I act with everyone else. Sometimes my actions can be misconstrued or misunderstood, which is frustrating because I am truly acting the only way I know how to act.
So, an extrovert’s life isn’t all parties and brunches. I love people and I love being around people, but my personality is by no means simple because of how I choose to recharge myself.