I’m an Introvert and I’m Proud Being One


I was today years old when I learned that January 2 is World Introvert Day. When I was scrolling my Facebook news feed this morning, I saw a post of Philippine Star about it with graphics. Even though I consider myself one, I do not have wide knowledge about it. So, I did my research in order for me to know myself better. Before sharing what I have learned, I am going to narrate how I identified myself as an introvert.

When I was a child, I was one of those you see playing rubber bands, hide and seek, and ‘taguan’ during vacation days. I was competitive when I join these games that when I lose, I cry a river. I am fortunate that I am living in a compound with several children. We would play almost all the day long. I do not mind getting dirty as long as I can dominate them. In school, you would see me perspiring during recess time as I play patintero with my classmates. Patintero was our life. We sacrificed eating snacks to make sure we can maximize the fifteen- minute break. We would go back to classroom sweaty, our white t-shirt soiled. Our teacher would exclaim that we smell bad. I can say that my childhood was action- filled.

As I approached fifth grade, everything changed. I became a quiz bee contestant for several months that I had few bonding moments with my classmates. This continued in my sixth grade. I remember one time that I was watching my classmates playing tumbang preso while I was in a room with books and other reviewers. Honestly, I do not know how to play that game. I concentrated my last two years of my elementary education to win quiz bees in History, Geography, and Civics, and Science. Maybe I should had asked my classmates to teach it to me. However, I still managed to play. But, I fell in love with badminton and volleyball. It was the transition from childhood games to sports. I was able to learn about rackets and nets.

When I became a high school student, I changed big time. I am joining school- based contests such as jingles and dance performances, but I started to feel anxious when facing people. I love performing, but I noticed that I start to become shy or conscious. First, I thought it was just about puberty or starting the adolescence. I just turned to be a teenager who started to struggle dealing with large group of people. Contrary to my personality in elementary who easily befriend classmates, I had small circle of friends when I was in my secondary education. I can say that I was active student as I vied for highest rank of our class, but when there were classroom routines that have no connection with academics, I had low interest on it. Most of the time, I dissent when there are informal meetings--- making me as the KJ of the class or killjoy. You would see me seldom during class outing or attending occasions such as barangay fiesta as I prefer to stay at home. That time, neither my classmates nor I know about the term “introvert”. If I had learned it before, maybe I had told them that I am not asocial but I just love to have more alone time. Maybe I became like this because of the environment back then. I remember that I was bullied many times because I am not conforming to what my other classmates were doing that time. I easily built relationship with my classmates who were not loud or expressive, but I struggled to mingle with those who are social.

I went to college with these traits. I do not how I was able to participate in different contests and events that require stage presence yet I am slowly turning to be a guy who loves to staying indoors. Maybe the reward of graduating with honors pushed to me to the limit. When I graduated my tertiary education, I seldom leave our home. I love being in front of the television watching my favorite shows. I love staying on my bed. I just want to stay away with big crowd. That period, I was preparing for my licensure exam. I occasionally go out and I only travelled weekly for my review classes. When I got employed, going home is my way of recharging after dealing with many people. Talking with others is a daily big challenge that somehow, I manage to survive. I wish that I can find a job that will not require me to face people most of the time. I am not saying that I do not like my job right now. I am grateful for being employed. I wrote this because as an introvert, I wish I could have more alone time. This is not the time for that. I need to hone my writing skills so that I can make my dream come true. That’s why I am blogging. It is weird that I share my thoughts in public, yet I yearn to have longer time away from public eyes. What I am trying to point out here is I still want to engage with people, but not much more of face- to- face interaction.

I cannot remember the first time I encountered the word “introvert”. What I can recall is I watched a video about situations being dealt by an introvert. I was laughing about it at the same time, it hits so hard. That day, I realized that I am introvert. I hope that people whom I dealt with for more than twenty years understand me now. I am writing this in order to make it known that I am an introvert and I am proud of being one. This is my explainer of why I am like this. This is my way to address misconceptions about me and other introverts.

Based on some online dictionaries, introvert is a noun which is a shy or reticent person. Many associate this word to being timid. However, there are those who do not agree with this. In a Healthline article, this notion was dismissed. Shyness is temporarily felt when dealing with people. It is part of adjustment. As time goes by, this fades as one has become adapted to the environment or situation. On the other hand, introversion is deemed as fixed part of one’s personality.

Moreover, the article elucidated introversion such as how one becomes an introvert. I learned from it that introversion is having low level of extroversion. This means that we, introverts, still love to deal with people, but we have limitations that make us feel drained. The article conveys the different personality traits of an introvert such as needing more time being alone, less socialization, struggling in dealing with conflicts, having small circle of friends. Introverts have busy minds as we love to daydream or think about the things we want to do or our what-ifs.

What I appreciate about what I read is an introvert has a preference to scribble his thoughts than to share them through oral communication. I am better of writing my ideas than constructing them and deliver them through speaking. I am calm in writing than talking. There are times that I stutter when I am tasked to answer questions orally. I feel nervous as if I will be ridiculed when I commit mistakes in pronunciation or in grammar.

I learned from nationaltoday.com that this day is called World Introvert Day because of the suggestion of Felicitas Heyne, a German psychologist through her blog post way back 2011 entitled “Here’s Why We Need a World Introvert Day”. She proposed that January 2 is the date to celebrate as it is the day after new year. It is an apt date for the introverts to rest after dealing with long holiday season. The year after the publication of the said post, the first ever observation of the event transpired. It is now more than a decade being commemorated. I am grateful that there is now given attention about us. I hope many people would respect when we ask space. I hope people would not raise their eyebrows or have the idea that I am snobbish when they meet me in public places.

I appreciated myself more after reading information about being an introvert. I will do my best to advocate about introversion even it could be draining for me. There are times I feel I need to please people that I sacrifice my quiet time. I will manage my life well this year. I would accept invitations, but I would not invalidate what I feel like if I want to stay home, I will stay home. For those people who know me, thank you for understanding. I promise that I would do my best to deal with you. What I can also promise that when you connect to me, what you see and feel is genuine.

Thank you for this day. Happy World Introvert Day to all my fellows.

Post a Comment