I came across this Atlantic Monthly article by Jonathan Rauch about introverts and couldn’t believe how closely it seemed to reflect my own personality.
know someone who needs hours alone every day? Who loves quiet conversations
about feelings or ideas, and can give a dynamite presentation to a big audience,
but seems awkward in groups and maladroit at small talk? Who has to be dragged
to parties and then needs the rest of the day to recuperate? Who growls or
scowls or grunts or winces when accosted with pleasantries by people who are
just trying to be nice?
Extroverts are energized by people, and wilt or fade when alone. They often seem
bored by themselves, in both senses of the expression. Leave an extrovert alone
for two minutes and he will reach for his cell phone. In contrast, after an hour
or two of being socially "on," we introverts need to turn off and recharge. My
own formula is roughly two hours alone for every hour of socializing. This isn’t
antisocial. It isn’t a sign of depression. It does not call for medication. For
introverts, to be alone with our thoughts is as restorative as sleeping, as
nourishing as eating. Our motto: "I’m okay, you’re okay—in small doses."