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Living life as an introvert…

The quietest people have the loudest minds. The title kind of makes it sound like it’s a choice… but it’s not. I can probably guarantee that the majority of introverts wished they weren’t. And I really don’t know what how it happens or why it happens but it just is. For me personally I guess I’ve always been “shy” but never really considered myself an introvert until I got to university. It was weird, I all of a sudden found myself in a situation where I didn’t know anyone, my parents weren’t in the next room and my life just completely got flipped on its head. All of a sudden the thought of living with complete strangers made me feel sick. And the frustrating thing is that I love meeting new people, I’m always ready to make new friends and connections but put me in a situation where I come face to face with someone I don’t know I just close up. I become awkward, I have no idea what to say and I’m just being a shadow of who I really am. And I promise, I’m not being rude I really do want to talk but in my head I just flick through every possible thing I can say and just can’t pluck up the courage to say it and I don’t know why. The world won’t end if I ask you how your evening was, I’m sure you won’t be offended if I ask where you’re from but something just stops me. It’s a struggle I have every single day and I always say to myself “What’s the worst that could happen?” but even that doesn’t make it any easier. It really is true that that the quietest people have the loudest minds. On the outside it may seem that there’s not much going on in the mind of an introvert but believe me there is. They’re thinking about every single detail of the conversation they’re having and more. They want to talk but they just don’t know how to. And when they eventually do they spend the next 4 hours thinking about how they could’ve performed better. They know what they want to say and how to say it but their mind runs away and somehow just talks them out of it. And they’ll sit there listening to other people have conversations and wondering and wishing how they can have a conversation that easily. They make a pact with themselves. Next time “I have a conversation I’m going to try my absolute hardest to be myself and keep it going.” The perfect opportunity comes but still they crawl back into their little shell and wishing they were in any other possible situation. Attending group activities with people they hardly know terrifies them to death. They know they’ll be the odd person standing on the fringes as everyone else acts like they’ve known each other for years. They wish that someone will approach them and maybe usher them into conversation because making the first step themselves is just too difficult. They can’t make eye contact for more than a few seconds so it may seem like they’re staring off into space when actually they’re thinking about the sheer awkwardness of them not making eye contact and trying their best to rectify it. But in the presence of people they know well and are comfortable with they’re a completely different person it would seem. They don’t mind being the centre of attention and will tell anecdotes until the sun goes down. Same goes for the virtual world. They’ll happily have a conversation behind a screen, masking themselves from the realities of social interactions. They don’t want to meet this person face to face… not yet. Right now they are purely happy being a faceless conduit. However they’re smart, they can read you, they’ve worked you out pretty quickly. Their minds are working over time and latching on to every word you say but also focusing on the words you’re not saying. They play over every single scenario in their head no matter how feasible and it eats away at them constantly. It’s not all bad though, they also have crazy imaginations and are often fans of writing. Being an introvert doesn’t mean they’re quiet, it means there is a loud person inside that doesn’t know how to come out. They’re scared of rejection, and being the centre of attention because of their own insecurities. They also like to exaggerate… Which might mean this has all been a bit dramatic.

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