Weighty Matters

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Not an Introvert

on January 24, 2014

I’m really glad that I’m not an introvert. I’m pretty sociable, a good networker, and almost completely comfortable heading into lots of different situations by myself. While I don’t make close friends easily, I am easily friendly and can chat to complete strangers.

This comes in handy in my line of work. It also comes in handy in general. It’s a useful life skill.

It used to be more difficult when I had to overcome self-consciousness over my body size. I often imagined my large body preceding the rest of me into a room. I projected that the people already in the room, automatically judged me with the most negative opinions. I also generally compared myself to others, or rather looked around and noticed that I was usually the heaviest person in the room.

When I think about those decades, I marvel a little that I didn’t become an introvert or seek to hide instead of reaching out to connect with others. If I had, I know that it would have made my life and my job even more difficult. I will admit that I employed a lot of “fake it until you make it” attitude to help me perform in those social and business situations. Even if I dreaded, anticipated, or imagined the judgments, I pretended otherwise. I acted “as if” I was more confident than I felt.

It’s really nice that I don’t do that whole “body size judgment” projection any more. When I walk into a situation, confident and sure, I’m not acting. That’s me all of the way. I know that I really always was an extrovert and now that’s completely unfettered and free of any lingering uncomfortableness.

2 responses to “Not an Introvert

  1. Hope says:

    You hid your self consciousness well, because I never noticed it!

  2. Skye says:

    I think being an extrovert is easier than being an introvert. A higher proportion of the population is naturally extroverted (and yes, you can be an extrovert and be shy, just as you can be an introvert and be outgoing). Being an extrovert is highly valued. I’m glad that natural propensity was there to help you through all the years you felt judged for your weight.

    I’m an introvert. We aren’t regarded as highly and many people try to “make” use be extroverts (you can’t; it’s all about where your energy comes from and is an inherent trait). I think it’s good to have both. I’m a slightly shy introvert, which makes meeting strangers and networking really hard. But they are necessary “evils”, so I do them when I can make myself.

    I think that introverts need extroverted friends, like you, to drag the introvert along in their wake, to help them make connections and make it easier to meet people. I think extroverts need introverted friends to encourage introspection and to have deep relationships with.

    I’m very happy that you and your job suit each other so well. A great match isn’t always easy to find and it’s probably why you love it so much and are so good at it, and were even when you were so body-conscious.

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