It's unhealthy how difficult it is for me to forget the outside world. Can I really say I have no company if I send out a wave of snapchats every hour or so, or if I obsessively check to see if a friend has texted back to confirm some plan or another? Am I really spending time with myself if I dwell on whatever happened at work a day or a week or a month ago? When I'm home alone, the days go by so slowly.
I've heard this before and I heard it again last night while reading some feel-good teen flick book: Extroverts get their energy from being around other people, and introverts get their energy from spending time alone. So what does that make me?
I love people. I really do. I wouldn't call them energy-filling though. You see, talking to people is also so exhausting - how do I make them like me!?? Or as the post my friend tagged me in the other day said,
What do we want?
When do we want it?
And that is exactly what makes communicating with others so exhausting, this feeling of caring way way too much about what they think. And then when I get home I think about what I've said that day over and over again, and I read into how well I connected with particular people as if it's my fault if we didn't make that connection.
At the same time though, people seem to be what it takes for me to be flying high on happiness. Give me one good conversation and suddenly I'm motivated to do anything. I will go home and do my maths homework, or practice my piano, or be super nice to my parents for a change. Being alone could never do that for me. So is this an extrovert thing or does this happen to everybody?
So about 15 minutes ago, I was rubbing my forehead while looking at a seemingly simple maths problem I could not be bothered to correct, and then I slid the textbook off to the side and basically gave up, which is something I would never do if I weren't so drained right now. And now here I am writing a random post on a whim and it's supposed to be about identity because that's what I was thinking about in the shower last night and I really wanted to write a post on it but now I can't remember what I was thinking about.
It linked back to the whole introvert, extrovert thing - I swear it did.
Oh yeah, it had to do with how I watched a TED talk the other day where this actress talked about losing her sense of self to be happy - and she described what 'self' actually was - which is complicated. I don't think any of us really knows our 'self'. How do you even define it? Is it by your culture, or by what you like doing, or what you're good at, or the big one... What other people think of you.
That was how it linked back to the whole extrovert thing. How can you be an extrovert if you have social anxiety? If you're an extrovert, would it be better to forget your sense of self to be happy? Because if your sense of self is based on what other people think of you, and how close you are with them - because people are your life - and this is the cause of so much worry and dwelling, then maybe forgetting what they think of you would make you happier?
And then would you become an introvert? Because suddenly you're home alone and you've forgotten about the outside world and you can watch movies and do your maths homework in peace, and rather than your phone being beside you on your desk, it's now downstairs where you can't hear it buzz.
But I reckon, if you're an extrovert you're an extrovert. Either way, being alone will make you slouch and lie around in bed all day, whether you're thinking about other people or not. Sometimes good company is all we want, and that's okay. Being happier may be about being carefree and hence less socially strained and awkward, but that doesn't necessarily mean introverts don't care either. Introverts aren't necessarily happier than extroverts.
I think I just need some company already.