Comments: 6
Khanh the Killjoy 6 years ago
I'm an introvert myself. I was absolutely terrified of crowds, of public speaking, etc, until I got to college and realized that I had to deal with it or have a really fucking tough 4 years making one presentation after another in class (Double Business major). I gradually learned how to fake confidence and small talk as well as learned the art of appearing normal. Faking it seems to be the key.
There's a really interesting section in this narrative about when to appear more in roles of extroversion than introversion, and I definitely think that in some cases (such as public speaking), it's a requirement of stepping out of one's comfort zone many times. Heck, many extroverted people I know are absolutely terrified of public speaking. But as far as the overarching demeanor's concerned, I do think that society as a whole should take into consideration that extroversion/introversion are not necessarily separate entities entirely, nor is one more "not normal" than the other.
Khanh the Killjoy 6 years ago
What finally broke my fear of public speaking was the realization that during my classmates' presentations, I was just fucking around. I was reading stuff, playing with my laptop, daydreaming. I realized that nobody cares what I say up there, so I just stopped caring. I gradually learned to speak from my thoughts rather than rely verbatim on a memorized speech. Don't even talk about my years in Academic Decathlon when I had to recite a prepared speech. Eep.
In most situations I am very extroverted. I can say for myself that it is hard being around people who are introverts because - well for me anyway - it made me feel uncomfortable. you know, when you talk a lot and feel good and then you meet someone who doesn't talk much it feels you kinda have to be the driving force in conversations so it doesn't get too quiet. Stupid, I know. Also, not putting any blame on introverts. Just saying how I felt around introverts and how weird I felt because of my own insecurities and shortcomings. Recently - i.e. the past 3 years - I have learned a lot more about myself, also that I'm a loner. I always have been. I don't have problems being alone, but I don't hate people either. I just enjoy my quiet time. I still try to make other people feel comfortable by being open to them and friendly but i am not that weird blabbermouth anymore that I used to be. When I realize that someone prefers less talk I simply shut up and enjoy the quiet with them without feeling stupid about what I said or did if that makes sense. I think the world needs both and if you ever meet someone who says you're weird for not talking much just remember that they might be as insecure as the rest of the world and just try to cover it up by talking and being loud and obnoxious. :)
I definitely agree there's a balance to be had. =) And I actually enjoy company of many kinds, whether they talk a lot or a little. I think for me what makes the difference with conversations is how passionate you are about the subject you're speaking. I like to learn and reflect with people. Small talk's usually hard for me because I can't find myself talking much about the weather or something that someone saw on a reality show that I don't know about, but give me a topic that I'm interested in or something I know well and can expound on, and I run with it. In that measure, I think I can be more extroverted. I think inherently, we each have our own extroverted/introverted balances, and Cain actually does a brilliant job of highlighting that in this text. I think it's just a matter of knowing or learning what gives us the most confidence and using what unique strengths we have.
I think I do have the same problem. I am very passionate about things. Unfortunately, people living around me don't share that passion for the same things. So mostly it's small talk there and though I hate it, I have an endless array of useless things I can talk about. xD Self-protection mechanism I like to call it. but when it's about something I love then - well you gotta be sure you really wanna go there haha