Have you ever wondered what your life would have been like if people really understood you? For me it’s about the fact that at heart I am an introvert, not an extrovert. I jokingly kid that “I hate people”, but, to be honest, it’s not that far from the truth. I don’t actually hate people, I just don’t like interacting with people face-to-face.
If I’m responding to an email I can think about my responses and figure out the right thing to say. But if I’m talking to someone, either over the phone, through Skype or, God forbid, in person, I don’t get the opportunity to think. I need to be on top of my game all the time. I don’t like that, which is why, for the most part, I act somewhat like a comedian. I try to deflect the truth through a clever series of jokes, self-deprecating remarks or even poking fun at someone. I try to deflect the attention away from what I am saying.doing so that people won’t comment.
It’s not that I’m scared of their comments, I just don’t want to have to respond to those comments right after they are made.
I recently did a survey that was evaluating how I work versus a series of predetermined characteristics so see how well I performed versus the target. One of the questions that came up early on completely threw me for a loop. I hated the question because I hated what it said that I needed to do in order to become “the ideal employee”. The question?
On a scale of 1 (to a small extent) to 5 (to a great extent):
I anticipate the emotional triggers of others, and try to mitigate reactions.
I almost never do that. I’m not a people person, I don’t anticipate emotional triggers. I can’t anticipate emotional triggers. If someone doesn’t behave logically I am at a loss to explain why they are reacting the way they are. Emotions are one of the things that makes humans so unpredictable. At least to me. Introverts like to think about things. They think about things and then they come up with a plan of action. But, for the most part, they think things through logically. At least the introverts that I am familiar with do it logically. The emotional side? There’s no logic in that, you need to respond immediately and that sucks.
If people were more aware of each other, aware that there are introverts and extroverts, logicians and emotional time bombs, straight and not-straight, two sides to every coin then I think that there would be fewer people hammering square pegs into round holes. Fewer people trying to force people into mold that few people fit. Fewer attempts at trying to promote an ideal that not everyone can live up to.
If people were aware of this when I was younger I know that I would not be the person that I am today. I would be different, but in what way?