Being an Extrovert is Fun

…When there are people around.

Winter break is coming up, and that means I’ll be back home. And by home I mean not college. Considering most of my friends are college friends, that means I won’t be around most of my friends.

Were I still unaware of my extroversion, I wouldn’t mind. Rather, I wouldn’t know to mind. As it is, I know what’s going to happen. I’ll get home, and I’ll probably survive until Christmas, and then maybe a few days after that I’ll enter a depressive state, because that’s what happens when I don’t people enough.

I suspect I’m actually being quite generous with how long it will take because I’ve gotten to that point over the course of an afternoon almost every Thursday because I don’t have any scheduled peopling that day except my morning class. I usually plan my dinner around when I know my friends will be eating so that I don’t go completely insane.

So I’ll go home, and at the latest I’ll enter a depressive state a few days after Christmas. Going to karate and church will help, usually for a day in my experience, but that still leaves gaps. Chances are the few friends I do have back home will be busy because they tend to have more of a life than I when we’re home.

I’m looking forward to break since I will have time to edit my writing, but I’m not looking forward to break because I won’t want to edit my writing because apathy is the primary symptom of people-withdrawal.

Yay.

Also doesn’t help that life is still strange.

Compliments

I don’t compliment people a whole lot. Part of this is that I tend to find achievements more valuable than inherent ‘being’s–a fault I am (obviously) aware of–for myself and so compliment the things people do rather than the people themselves. The other part of why I don’t compliment people is that I am highly aware of all the possible outcomes of saying any particular thing.

Continue reading Compliments

I’m an Extrovert

Who knew? I don’t think anyone would have guessed it before I figured it out. I’ve been meaning to write this for a while, but I’ve been procrastinating, because I know it will be fairly long.

Let’s back up and give you some background. When I was much younger–four or five years old, probably–my family all took the Enneagram personality test. The Enneagram typing system, briefly, has nine numbers that stand for different personality types. 1 is the Perfectionist, 2 is the Helper, 3 is the Achiever, etc. According to the Enneagram typing system, you are primarily one of these numbers, with part of an adjacent number as your “wing.”

As I’ve had more time to think about it–three quarters of my life, technically–I’ve come to not like it very much, but at the time, it inspired in me a love of personality typing. (The reason I don’t particularly like–though don’t dislike–the Enneagram system is that it is a measure of the obvious; that is, it tells you what your behaviors are. Its types are also broad enough so that I tend to overlap in many of them, making it more difficult to believe I was a certain type simply because I may have answered one question differently to get that type.)

Fast forward some time–I didn’t keep track of how long; I didn’t know I’d be writing this blog post–and my brother discovered the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. It uses four binaries to create sixteen personality types. In other words, the types are four letters, each letter can be one of two: I or E, S or N, F or T, and J or P. An advantage–in my mind–MBTI has over the Enneagram system is that it is based on Jungian cognitive theory; that is, it tries to type how people think at their core, but not their behavior, necessarily. That will be important later.

Though my brother has since come to deplore it–though I’m sure he would use lesser language–at the time, he was fascinated with it. Our whole family took tests, and I came out as ISTP. The important part to understand about this is that the first letter can either be an I or and E, standing for Introvert and Extrovert respectively.

At the time, it seemed to fit my personality quite well. I recall one of the descriptions of ISTPs being that they were a bit of a mercenary, and I, being the young, foolish boy I was, saw that and ignored the rest. Whether or not I would have realized anything then had I looked further I don’t know. I doubt I would have realized I was an extrovert, but maybe I would have seen that I was an N rather than an S like I did when…

When I went to public high school–after being home schooled prior to that–they had all the students take a MBTI test (which was horribly built, but I won’t go into that), and I came out as INTJ. I knew I was an ISTP (Ha!). I definitely wasn’t an INTJ (Heh). Then my mom suggested I retake the test at home with one of the tests I trusted. What do you know, I came out as INTP. After looking at various descriptions of the INTJ and INTP and ISTP (LETTERS!!), I decided that I actually was an INTP, so the school test wasn’t all wrong.

At no point had I questioned my introversion. I didn’t like talking to people. I didn’t like going out with friends. I didn’t like being the center of attention. Of course, you know there’s a “but” coming.

But then I went to college. I made several friends in the dorm I was in–sorry, “residential hall”–and in the InterVarsity chapter (as I’ve discussed before). I still didn’t like being the center of attention, and I definitely tended to be the quietest person in the room when there more than my two roommates around. Even when it was just us three I was quiet unless the INFJ was talking to me–I don’t think I’ve mentioned that I love INFJs before, so there you go. They’re awesome.

So I’m an introvert wrong? Since you’re smart enough to remember the beginning of this post, you know the answer is no. See, all the MBTI tests I’ve taken say I’m an introvert. How I act says I’m an introvert. So let’s tear those two points apart.

First is the MBTI tests. Early on this Summer, while I still thought I was an INTP, I was texting with my brother about MBTI and we mentioned–I don’t remember which one of us brought it up–how the MBTI tests seemed to be testing shyness vs. outgoingness rather than introversion vs. extroversion. The difference being that shyness vs. outgoingness is a measure of fear in social interactions, while introversion and extroversion are, simply, where you get your energy, either by being alone or by being with others respectively.

Of course, that didn’t mean that I wasn’t an introvert, just because the tests tend to test the wrong thing. So then we turn to how I act. While at college, I didn’t talk a lot, especially in larger groups of people (and we’re talking more than four or five people; it didn’t take much). However, I still enjoyed being around them, even if I was only listening.

Then there’s the matter of text vs. speech. Text is a lot easier for me, to the point that, in a private group chat with friends, such as a Facebook group for my D&D group, I am at least 90% more likely than anyone else to be the one that initiates something. In the case of the D&D group, I’d be the one asking about the next meeting or posting random things I thought they would appreciate. In texting my (majority INFJ) friends, I’m almost always the one that initiates it.

I’m not an introvert. I’m a shy extrovert.

Well. I was.

See, when I finally figured out I was an ENTP in the middle of August, I started noticing some changes in my behavior. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before, but if not, I take karate lessons while I’m home from college. Continuing my trend from above, I wasn’t particularly outspoken (understatement of the century). Then, after I decided I was an ENTP, I noticed myself talking more. When I would usually keep my mouth shut because of what I suppose was anxiety, I spoke freely. When I would usually not be the first person to say anything, I was speaking up.

It was very disconcerting. I hadn’t done anything to make this change except change what I was calling myself. Where I had expected I would need to work hard to act myself–a.k.a. extroverted–when I went to college, I was now doing it naturally; accidentally.

This coming year will be interesting. I’ve really only had opportunity to test my extroversion at karate, which is only for an hour at a time. It will be interesting how I do in a setting that is much more often catering to extroversion. Hopefully it will help me get out of this state of blah I’m in that I attribute to lack of peopling (which, surprisingly, is a word, but sadly, does not mean what I want it to mean).

Toodles. (No. Don’t let me ever say that again. Again. I’m pretty sure I’ve already told you that. Which means you failed. Because I just said it. Again. Which I told you not to let me do. I think. You might be in big trouble. Not that I’m going to check.)

Let God Love You

I hear you as the anniversary draws near
And every fiber of my body wants to scream
Every second I talk to you, listen to you
All I can think is one word:
God

He wouldn’t fix everything in your life
Bring your step-father back from the dead
Or make your brain normal (whatever that is)
But he can be there better than I
He is God

I listen as best as I can as your pour out your heart
Listen to all of the death and pestilence in your life
And I know that it’s scary to feel so helpless
To be in a place where you can’t do anything
So let God love you

If we let Him love us, we know we are helpless
We can’t return the favor, we hate being in debt
In a debt we can’t repay with anything we have
Because we are human, and He is
God

But that’s okay

He is God

Being helpless is okay

So let God love you

Because every fiber of my body screams

God

Accountability and Anonymity

First: I have been writing, but I’ve been writing stuff as part of a possible book, so I’ve been holding back on posting it.

As to today’s first real topic: I’ve found that in order to do most things, I need to be held accountable for it. A prime example of this is in writing. This semester I’ve been taking a creative writing class in which we have to write 4 pages of prose or 2 poems or any combination thereof (a poem and 2 pages of prose, for example) every week. I am quite capable of doing this, but when I am on break or once I write enough to fulfill that quota, I stop.

Since I would much rather not not write all Summer, I persuaded a friend from high school to have a writing accountability partnership for Camp NaNoWrimo in July, and I’ll probably get her to extend that to the rest of Summer as well. Basically we’ll send each other what we wrote that day/week, and if we don’t, the other person will text-yell at the slacker.

As for anonymity, my college has a Facebook page that is inspired by the social networking site LikeALittle. In this rendition, students can submit flirts/compliments/kudos through an anonymous Google Form, and the page will later post it to their page. If the person the post is about doesn’t see it right away or doesn’t like the page, friends that see it typically tag them in a comment so they see it, and the usual response is something to the effect of “I don’t bite.”

There was a recent instance of someone talking about someone in their class. However, the class in question was pretty small, and the number of people that would have sent in that LikeALittle was diminished to two with a %92.8 leaning towards one of them due to some other things the LikeALittle said.

I’m mostly curious if the person who submitted the LikeALittle actually expect(s/ed) to stay anonymous or not. It does bring up the question of how much someone can actually say in the LikeALittles and still stay anonymous. Of course, it being a small class is much more of a giveaway than some of the other things (such as saying where you saw the person on campus).

Anyway, I guess a conclusion would be that just being anonymous doesn’t mean people don’t know who you are. Personality and circumstance reveals more about who you are than your name.

Also writing. Keep writing and be accountable.

No. Just, No.

In one of my classes, we were introduced to the next assignment. It makes no sense for me.First: we are supposed to imagine we are the president of SGA – strike one. Second: we are in groups as if the president of SGA put together a group of people – strike two. Third: This group of people is supposed to write a report about including four nonexistent Muslim students and one that exists, but already went to college, is 47 years old, and has no reason to come to this college – strike three.

If I were the president of SGA, I would immediately resign. I have negative interest in being the president of an organization whose job it is to care, because I really don’t. I would never run for the position, I would never accept the position, and I think I would rather transfer schools than be in that position.

As I mentioned, it is not a good idea to put me in a position where I’m supposed to care. Being on a panel with the president of SGA (which, by the way, is apparently all of us. According to the description, we are all the president of SGA, making a panel out of other presidents of SGA, ‘cause that makes sense.) is not a good idea. I am the last person anyone should ask to be part of a panel of carers.

Finally, I just don’t care about the inclusion of Muslim students. Don’t get me wrong, I want them to feel included; I want them to feel welcome, but I’m not the one to figure out how to make that happen. I don’t think that way. If you want someone to figure out how to benefit the most people the most given certain information (utilitarianism), but don’t ask me to care.

I am not going to like this assignment. I’m not even sure if I’ll be able to write it. I guess we’ll see how much I can bend the assignment once we actually get the hardcopy version of the assignment, as we’ve only discussed it. Oh, and you know how BSing is a thing? Yeah, no, not for me, so I’ll be having fun…