Even though it’s often joked about, the world doesn’t really see introverts as people haters.
But there’s a fairly widespread, frequently unspoken belief out there that we introverts are merely tolerant of or, at best, indifferent toward or uncomfortable around other people — that while we don’t actively and vocally dislike being around others, we don’t necessarily enjoy it either; we simply put up with it.
Basically, the prevailing thought goes, we introverts are just not people people.
It’s not true. It’s frustrating to have to say it, but it’s simply not true.
I so enjoy talking to other people — but not in a noisy party or reception environment amidst dozens of other people battling for the same airspace, over blaring music no less. Let’s find somewhere a little quieter so we can chat one on one, perhaps over a cup of coffee or a glass of wine. I really want to hear and understand what you have to say. It’s important. You’re important. I am too, for that matter. We both deserve to be truly heard.
I so enjoy talking to other people — but not about the weather or the football game on TV. Let’s get into a deeper, more thought-provoking subject. You’ll have both my attention and my appreciation as we exchange observations and ideas about a topic that really matters. We’ll probably both learn something in the process. Even better.
I so enjoy talking to other people — but not for hours on end, nonstop. Let’s take a teeny tiny break once in a while to catch our respective breaths for just a few minutes, then get back together to continue the conversation. You’ll be refreshed. I’ll be refreshed. And our discussion will get a jolt of new energy because we’ve had a chance to reflect and recharge.
I like being with people. I’m a people person; I really am. Introverts are people people too.
It’s the way we like being with other people that is so significantly different from the typical extravert’s way of enjoying people. And it’s this difference in our preferences for interacting that is, sadly, apt to be misconstrued for the sinister something it is not.