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Our style of communicating and interacting is not always a reflection of our true personality type.
We are all different when it comes to the way we prefer to communicate and interact. Some people prefer to interact in the outside world of people, things and activities while others prefer the internal world of reflection, thoughts, ideas and observation. We all do both, but we do prefer one over the other. In fact, the one will give us energy and the other will zap our energy.
As a child, I would notice the world as if I was an observer rather than part of it, silently watching the dynamic interaction between people and their behaviour. I was aware of how other kids so easily integrated and made new friends while it took me a little longer to trust and let people in. I would spend hours in my own company although just as comfortable with one on one interactions with people I trusted and connected with. I would have rather watched paint dry than go to parties or social arrangements with people I did not know.
I was always a deep thinker and needed more depth to make meaningful connections. I always felt so serious compared to others and accused that I couldn’t have fun. This always confused me as I thought I was having fun in my own little world but often felt judged in the outer world. It wasn’t until I leant about type that I could understand what all this meant and could finally stop thinking there was something wrong with me and felt comfort and validation knowing who I truly was, that I wasn’t alone in the world, there were others like me. I am an Introvert and that is OK. Self-acceptance and Liberation, woooohoooo….and that is where the real work began!
Like any skill, task or activity, the better we are at something the more we will enjoy it and the more energy we get performing it. Problem is, we can’t go through life only being able to interact in the way we prefer all the time as everybody is different and the differences between us become an underlying source of ongoing conflict, misunderstanding and frustration if we are not able to adapt our own preferences to the world around us. Much like our muscles need stretching to make them more fit or flexible so do our social skills to improve our social fitness.
Today, unless you know me well or are reading this blog, nobody believes that I am an introvert. An extreme introvert that has learnt to extrovert well. I also understand today why others may think I am antisocial preferring to stay home with my dogs watching Netflix. We all however also need balance in our lives and can’t stay home watching Netflix every day. We may also have other people in our lives that have other preferences to our own, so there are times when we need to ‘flex’ and we need to learn how.
Understanding your personality type is the starting point for self-acceptance, self-regulation and for being socially feriFIT.
Want to know more about who you are and why you act the way you do in social situations?
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