Life in the shoes of an introvert

10 July 2024
Setraj Jahan Written by Setraj Jahan
Setraj Jahan

Setraj Jahan

Setraj loves to talk about lifestyle and mental health development. She is a writer and editor...


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As a first-person experience, this is not vetted by our reviewers. 

This story is about someone who had to change many aspects of her life due to her quiet nature. This is me, a writer, a poet, a letter artist, and an introvert. 

I belong to a South Asian society. Giving space and being considerate of quiet people isn’t common here. As a result, I have grown up as someone who just nodded along to keep up with everyone’s expectations. That could be why, as an introvert, I wanted to change myself into a chatterbox, thinking it might make things easier. 

You ask, how does it feel to communicate as an introvert? Let me walk you through it.

Surviving every encounter as an introvert

Last year, a friend wanted me to call her, but I couldn’t make it. I knew she was in bad shape, but my energy levels had hit rock bottom.

I decided to make my mental health a priority for once. I said no to the call. We would talk later, I thought.

Unfortunately, we stopped talking after that. 

Other people’s expectations have been the biggest hurdle in managing my introverted nature.

Introversion is not often peaceful; it comes at the cost of mental drainage and chaos. 

It’s the same when it comes to work. Fast-paced routines tire me out. Most people want replies as fast as possible and often do not consider whether the person on the other side can reply. That is when my anxiety creeps in. I have to shut everything off because I risk overstimulation. 

Result? 

I avoid long conversations and social meet-ups. Rescheduling and canceling plans have become routine. However, I do feel guilty about my limited socializing ability. I won’t deny it. 

I need to sustain the minimum energy I get from my soul activities. If I don’t, my worst nightmare takes place. I experience physical discomfort when I get overwhelmed and spend time with the wrong circle for a prolonged period.

It starts with dizziness, along with nausea followed by irregular heartbeats and fatigue. I can tell that my smile is slowly disappearing. I can’t even get the gist of the conversation, let alone reply to them. In worst-case scenarios, my mind goes blank. I remember once having to give someone some medical journal references to prove my statement because, for most people, it wouldn’t make sense.

Thus, my body leaves no stone unturned to remind me about my introversion and limited social energy. Like Cinderella, I know that when midnight hits, I should return home. I don’t want people to see my true self whenever I feel that way. 

How I am dealing with it

Now, I don’t let the world tell me how being an introvert hinders my growth and that I need to adjust while reciting the ”extrovert” cliches.  

I treat myself with kindness while having difficulty listening to others. I am exploring my quiet world little by little.  

I am finally learning to say ‘no’. 

Am I dealing with the difficulties associated with introversion well? Yes. 

Am I successful? Not yet.

I saw a K-drama where immortals existed in the human world while collecting human energy through crystal beads. Who knows, maybe I can consume some energy beads from you someday (villain smile emoji inserted). Until that happens, I will live blissfully inside my cocoon, with tolerable human interaction, my favorite poetry book, and stargazing. 

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