Quiet RevolutionThe world is so noisy to me. I can’t even describe the noise of it, the beeping of phones and the chatter of people and the television and the press to respond. Even my washing machine nags me if I don’t get the clothes out quickly enough. I can’t tell you how much it grates on all of my nerves.
I am extreme introvert. Over time, I’ve come to believe that most things are a spectrum, not a point. You get friendly people who are very friendly, and those are a little friendly, people who are very mean and those who are just a little mean. It seems to be the same with introversion. You get introverts who need a bit of time on their own to feel balanced and happy and then you get me. I’m an introvert who probably wouldn’t notice for days if the rest of the world disappeared.
I’d notice eventually I assume, probably because I’d realise after a while that I hadn’t ignored my ringing phone for a few days.
But it’s true. I love to be alone and I need a lot of time by myself. I can go weeks without any social contact and feel fine. That’s not to say I don’t need any social contact at all of course, if I go without for too long then I get squirrelly, but my threshold for solitude is a lot higher than other people. And if I have a job that forces me to be social, to be around other people, it exhausts my need for social contact without really feeding my need for the right kind of social contact. But I’ll explain that later.
So it’s hard for me, to live and flourish in this world where everyone and everything is noisier than I could ever imagine being. As a result of all this, I’ve developed a number of survival strategies that keep me sane in this world where everything seems designed to grate on my nerves.
Seek Out Social Contact.
Deliberately seek out the right kind of social contact. I said I’d get back to this, didn’t I? See, the thing I realised is that I do have social needs, they just don’t seem to be the same as most people’s. I crave deeper conversations, in quiet places. I like to focus on just a handful of people, it allows me to map them in my mind without interruptions. But if I have a social job it exhausts me, drains my energy so that I don’t want to seek the type of interactions I need. This is when I need to deliberately ignore my exhaustion, seek out the right kind of social interactions, and watch my tank fill back up again.
Decide whose opinions matter to me and whose don’t. This applies to what other people think of me and the way I live my life. I care about the opinions of the people who are important to me and that’s it. I don’t have the time or the brain space to worry about the rest of the world. So if you see me singing and dancing as I drive, it’s only because I really don’t mind if you laugh at me.
Just Slow Down
Remember to take a breath before I make a choice. The world is strongly against this one. It wants decisions now, yesterday, quicker and hurry and why do you take so long. Unfortunately, when I make fast decisions they’re usually bad ones. I need 1.to slow down, ignore the pressure, and let myself think about things.
I’m Slow, Accept it
Accept my slower pace in all things, it makes things easier. I’m slower all round. I’m a slow thinker, extremely thorough, but slow, and so I take longer to do things. I develop and go through life stages slower and when I want something I am slower to get it. But I always get there. Slow doesn’t mean stupid and it doesn’t mean that I’m weak willed. In fact, I’m pretty sure it’s the opposite. Slow means I can map out my path, pinpoint and evade potential obstacles, and map out a clear route to what I want.
For those noisy days when the world just won’t go away and leave me in peace.
Do Feed the Brain
And finally, I need to feed and care for my brain. It is my greatest playmate and playground. It is the thing that can turn on me if it’s angry, or be my greatest ally. If I feed it well, it gives me endless opportunities and possibilities, and if I don’t than it closes down and traps me. As an introvert, my inner world is the real world, and that means that first and foremost I have to take care of my mind before anything else.
So those are my best tips, especially the final one. Ooh, and this post was inspired by the fact that my writing recently showed up on the Quiet Revolution website, so head over there and check it out if you want.