I recently picked up Amy Schumer’s memoir ‘The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo’ and whilst I haven’t finished it yet, one of the chapter’s really resonated with me.
I am an Introvert.
In it, Amy says ‘Being an introvert doesn’t mean your shy. It means you enjoy being alone. Not just enjoy it – you need it. If you’re a true introvert, other people are basically energy vampires. You don’t hate them; you just have to be strategic about when you expose yourself to them – like the sun. They give you life, sure, but they can also burn you and you will get all wrinkly’.
I didn’t expect the larger than life, no holds barred comedian to class herself as an introvert but I’ve only seen her do an hour of stand up and watched her play characters in Trainwreck and Inside Amy Schumer – What do I know about her really?
Anyway, I found myself nodding along to a lot of what she had to say.
At school I was described as ‘quiet’ and told that I should speak up more. Colleagues would never understand why I didn’t want to accompany them to after work drinks and friends would often get annoyed with my lack of enthusiasm about joining them on days out or on group holidays. Some have even described me as ‘miserable’ and/or ‘antisocial’.
The thing is, I’m not either of those things, not really. I just like to be alone.
Many of my friends are the type of people who constantly need human interaction to be able to function – always having people round to their houses for tea or planning days out – so they don’t understand why I don’t want to go to every single event that they organise. It’s not that I don’t like them it’s just that I would rather spend a day doing my own thing.
Knowing that someone i.e Amy Schumer – who is quite willing to share their most intimate moments on stage with the world watching – feels the same as I do is quite comforting. If she doesn’t have to be ‘on’ all the time, I don’t have to either. I shouldn’t have to apologise for being happy with my own company and I shouldn’t have to make excuses as to why I don’t want to go to this or that function.
I’m allowed time to myself and more importantly, I need time to myself. And that’s okay.
Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert? Or are you a bit of both?