Hi, I’m Zabby, and I’m a Capital-I Introvert. Often when I tell people this about myself, they laugh and say something like “but you’re so friendly!” There’s been a lot of discussion in the general zeitgeist* these days of what real introversion means (Exhibit A , Exhibit B). Really, it comes down to the fact that social interaction takes energy. A lot of introverts are also sensitive, like I am— and that combination can be challenging. I find it hard to talk to people I don’t know, and I hate being in the middle of a crowd (I’d rather be on the edge). I don’t like loud things with lots of stimulation or being forced into conversation. I hate feeling trapped. I DON’T hate people— I have friends who I love deeply and want to be with. But I have, like, eight, not fifty.
At the same time, I believe in the benefits of a group— for motivation, accountability, energy, inspiration, pushing boundaries, learning. It’s NOT about competition, comparison, or shame. “Make a date with a workout buddy!” is such common advice now that it’s almost a cliche.
I know those benefits are waiting for me, if I can push myself over the “OH NOES! STRANGERS! TALKING!” wall that I sometimes manage to build.