I am an introvert.
I recently “came out of the closet” (aka I keep writing about it). It’s not that my “introversion” is some brand spankin’ new discovery. It’s just that, writing is my primary way of processing e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. Writing is how I share my experiences, and who knows, maybe it will help another soul who feels like they are drowning. There is a remedy. We need to recharge our spirits. There is hope, and a way out of our introvert’s hang-over.
Friends and the Dreaded Word
You know… It occurred to me when I was writing last night that many don’t know what introversion is. I know there are in my life. I can say the word “introvert” and their exact response is “Whaaa?!?!?” At which point, I respond with “… nevermind, because if I have to explain it…”
Yeah, if I have to explain it. I am not sure that it will be worth the hard work of extra mental processing and emotional energy to relay the information… and then, possibly have more conversational pieces to decipher and process at night than I would care for.
So you see, it isn’t exactly personal.
I am going to take a slight detour from my introversion hang-over concept to explain it to you. Right here. Right now.
Not Weird, Just Wired Differently
According to an article from early 2011, there are about 25% of the generation population that are marked by introversion. But, there are probably much more. Some of us spend our lives wondering “… okay, what’s wrong with me? Why am I different?” Anyway, there is a small percentage. So your friends may not understand why a conversation or party can drain the life.out.of.you.
Introverts are wired differently than their friends who aren’t as close on the introversion-extroversion scale.
We are wired differently.
It doesn’t mean we are weird or somehow “not measuring up”.
We are simply different from others of different personality types.
Introversion is just a way of describing our personalities.
Social situation can stress out our spirits, especially if we aren’t taking time afterward for silence (of some sort) and processing. Shear silence (again, of some sort… Introverts “recharge” different ways. I am not sure if lack-of-silence means you won’t “recharge” as fast… I just know recharging is of great importance, or I am a walking-chaotic-disaster-with-absolutely-no-filter).
We (introverts) need to go into hiding for a time. And, we likely have a variety of ways coping with our external stimuli (sounds, conversations, lights, or a number of other things).
External stimuli gives me what I will just refer to as “…an introvert’s hang-over.” No, I haven’t been drinking. No, my head isn’t throbbing. But, my spirit is just… done. It is overwhelmed. It is weighed down to such an extent, that I literally cannot think straight.
There is too much going on.
Things I haven’t taken the time to process.
I just haven’t taken care of myself like I need to.
And, I am a milli-second away from letting my guard down and utterly losing it – all over everyone and everything. I am moments away from a few scenerios:
- Screaming unfriendly terms (possibly expletives) at those around me.
- Running far far away, to be alone.
- Crying my eyes out.
- Using my hands and feet to display the drowning of my spirit.
I am sure there are a lot of well-played out examples of what happens during “an introvert’s hang-over”. But a drowning spirit is the best possible explanation that I have to offer you, dear readers.
When You Just Can’t Deal
I simply can’t deal. I am doing all I can to keep my head and heart above water – just until I can reach that pivotal point of “plugging in” introvert style.
Tonight, this means…
- Quiet praise music (I rely on Jesus Christ to keep me going. After all, He is my Prince of Peace).
- Slow breathing.
- Writing out my thoughts (hello, blog readers!).
- Completely, empty space where I am alone to be with God and my thoughts.
Just quietly sitting by myself. I just can’t be about other things right now. I have had a long day. A loud day.
Saying these things (like calling a day long, loud, or draining) doesn’t mean the day didn’t have absolutely wonderful and beautiful aspects to it. It simply means my emotional battery needs to be recharged – if I want to be able to function tomorrow and not risk an emotion system shut-down.
If I want to experience life at its best, tomorrow, I need to take the time to effective care for my own needs tonight.
I have to take the time my spirit needs, without feeling guilty. Being an introvert can mean guilt. You know you need to recharge, or chaos erupts, but how do we do it guilt free? At night? When one should be sleeping vs. writing at midnight.
Reality At Its Finest
Today, I simply could not handle the excessive external stimuli. At one point, it took most of my resolve to merely sit at the kitchen table. alone.
Simply put, I was just done.
I felt overwhelmed.
I needed to plug in, because my emotional center’s battery was down to about 15% remaining. Which as we know. A battery’s percentage isn’t always an accurate indicator of when the device will actually die. Cuts it a bit too close when we are talking about not a technological device. Instead, we are talking about me.
In the middle of relationships.
I want to give God my best!
When I am drowning from neglecting to process my emotions and experiences, not exactly at my best. How can I give God, others, or myself my best when…
… emotions are heavy?
… self-control is clawing to hang on?
… I neglect me?
I need to recover from today’s “introvert hang-over”. The things I do in this moment, count greatly for how I can overcome the stuff of tomorrow.