Isn’t it amazing how mistaken a person can be?
I never thought I could be so wrong about something. I’m not sure why any of it matters, really – except that it does. Probably because I’ve believed an untruth for such a long time. Learning the truth has been the equivalent of me learning that the sun is really the moon and the moon really is just a big plate in the sky.
It all stems from a comment one of my favourite bloggers wrote on the last blog.
contoveros (a.k.a. Michael J.) wrote:
“You an introvert?
Nah. Not the way you write!
You got extrovert written all over you.
Nice guy, but no introvert.”
I disagreed with him. Told him why he was wrong. Told him why I’m an introvert.
Learned the truth over the weekend. The resulting mind-rush has left me a little messed up.
Let’s start with what “they” (whoever they are) say about introvert and extrovert personalities.
A psychiatrist who was speaking at an ADHD conference on the weekend said something like this:
“An introvert speaks from the head; from the mind. He rarely shows emotion and in fact can be mistaken for dull. He’s more interested in the facts, not the feelings behind them. Introverts” he went on to say “do have feelings. Don’t get me wrong. But they’re buried deep inside.”
“An extrovert, on the other hand, wears his heart on his sleeve. He’s invested in the heart of things and when he feels, he feels deeply.”
I can hardly keep it together when watching a particularly well-acted movie where the heroine dies, leaving her young son behind. (So fucking annoying, that.) I’m keenly aware of people, and can often “read” them within a few seconds. This awareness has everything to do with their emotions, their body language, the flickering look they get in their eyes, everything.
But what about this need to process everything before reacting? Why this abhorrence to displays of drama? (And oh dear Lord yes – I *hate* being around overly dramatic people)
The psychiatrist opined: “sometimes people, when they’re young, start off either as an extrovert but conditions dictate that they have to grow up fast” (check)
“Sometimes, they have to submerge their extraversion into a semblance of introversion, just to survive” (uh oh. check again)
“And it’s only when they get older that they feel free to let loose and be the extrovert that was always there.” (uh huh. Life of the party. Hmm. )
But wait. What about the fact that I can’t stand being around people for too long?
(Someone cue the ADHD marching band)
“ADHD people have minds that go all over the place. They don’t want to stay in one place for too long.” (Shit. Check. This explains why it’s hard to be around “normal” people who talk about “normal” things. It also explains why there are so many problems staying focused when in a classroom or lecture or speech. Or teleconference call, even when I’m the moderator. I thought it was me being drained – as I told Michael – but it’s not. It’s that I’m way too easily bored).
Finally, I discussed the whole ADHD conference with a gorgeous friend of mine at work today.
**Why do I say she’s gorgeous?
==> Because she is.
**Yeah, but what’s significant about her appearance?
==>Well it’s more than her appearance, really. She has a bright, curious gorgeous mind too.
**Right. So what?
==>Well, I like her OK? Get over it.
**FINALLY! We get to the heart of it.
ANYWAY. She said something startling. And she said it so matter-of-factly – like everyone knew this and where the hell have I been that I missed it – that it left me a little shocked. “You? You’re not an introvert. C’mon. YOU? No way. You’re an extrovert like me.”
And there it was.
So Michael. I’m wrong and you’re right. For the rest of you reading this – take a look at the last blog.
This changes everything.
Time to party.
P.S. I got an iPad.