3 Unhealthy Habits You May Want to Change as an Introvert
Let me start by saying I’m naturally introverted. So all the usual things you see online (and don’t) about “10 Signs you’re an Introvert” — I’ve got em all.
But humans are not static creatures. We have existed and survived for thousands of years because we are adaptable. If all humans were wired to fail at the first sign of discomfort, we wouldn’t have made it far as species. Some say that our super comfortable and convient lifestyle has made us susceptible, and honestly I tend to agree. Having said that, I also recognise your tendencies don’t always make you ‘weak’. There is nothing inherently wrong with wanting to be in your own company and not feeling up to maintaining social norms of interactions.
But, context is important here. If you prefering your own company stems from insecurities and inability to speak to connect with others socially, its a problem. If it’s a tendency, then it’s your uniqueness as a human. How do we tell the difference? That’s the hard part and requires introspection.
From what I have seen of most introverts, they don’t always recognise this. The fact they face a conflict from others, they further push the introverted tendencies into their identity as a defence mechanism. So if you classify yourself, consider these 3 things and if you are unintentionally doing it.
Introvertedness is not an Identity
Yeah I said it. You are not your introvertedness. Don’t try to make it so. The recent online flurry of everyone claiming to be an introvert so they don’t have to do uncomfortable things is no good for anyone. It helps shield any flaws or gaps we may have in ourselves (only really visible to ourselves) if we start thinking any introverted tendency is ‘cool’.
It’s debatable that we will ultimately don’t like things that are not comfortable. But, when you eat healthy food, as hard as it may be you will feel better in the end. Same with excercise, its a good discomfort. If willingly pushing yourself to do it makes you feel better, then you are running away from your problems. If not, and you have made a sincere effort then it probably is just your personality type
Introvertedness if not a Gene
There isn’t a gene in your body that determines if you are an introvert. The point is there is no black or white. Who you are and what you end up liking is the complex sum of your experiences, upbringing, tendencies and mindset (ok and genetics). But the point is, you don’t have to think you are one or the other.
Often, when we conclude what we are or should be, we end up trying to make ourselves be like that. Its a confirmation bias of your own personality.
So consider for a second that it could very well be that you absolutely would enjoy being around large groups of people and it makes you feel more energetic. But because you never gained any strong mental foundations from a young age you are in your own head most of the time. So, every interacton feels like you have to walk a thin line of trying to do what you like to but also making sure everyone likes you.
Anyone who overthinks knows that torture. If this is the mental process that occurs every interaction, who even wants to be among people? But, if you worked on resolving your own self image and hate, all of a sudden it’s not torture.
You are Not your Mind
The biggest mistake of modern living is people assuming they are their mind. We have hundreds of thoughts per second, some reflexive, reactionary and other intentional (although you and I both know, conscious thought probably accounts for 5% of your daily thoughts). If you have an invasive thought about what would happen if you suddenly drop kicked your poor old grandma, it doesn’t mean you are evil.
In that scenario, you are literally thinking about it because you know you shouldn’t be. Once you recognise that your mind is reactionary and reflexive, all of a sudden the intrusive thought goes. The more you try to reason with a thought, the tighter it clings on to you. The lesson is, when you create that gap between who you are and what your thoughts are, life becomes a hell of a lot easier.
The monks who have conditioned themselves to not feel any pain use a similar strategy. It’s really simple and amazing.
These considerations are designed to question who you are. Whatever you identify yourself as, any method that further dives into ourselves is welcomed in my book.