Tag Archives: growth

Thoughts on {Extroverts and Introverts}

I’ve read a few articles recently about this introvert/extrovert, let’s say, debate. Most articles from the introvert’s perspective, or a “how to” when interacting with a self-proclaimed introvert. But loudly, as extroverts usually do, the responses and rebuttals are quickly making an appearance in social media.

So, why not weigh in, here are a few of my thoughts on this topic.

On the continuum of painfully shy, timid, unable to converse with people to the loud, obnoxious, talk to anyone, I would put myself quite firmly on the extrovert side. I realize this is both a personality trait, and a personal choice.

I do realize that introvert is not synonymous with quiet or shy. Nor should extrovert have the same definition as loud or obnoxious.

There is a certain disdain towards extroverts’ communication styles, with words such as shallow, pithy, empty, meaningless often thrown in as the key adjectives. This may or may not be true for some extroverts, but can I just point out one minor thing? How do you get to know someone without talking? I can hear it already, “Small talk isn’t communication.” False. (insert Dwight’s face) You learn something from every conversation, well you can learn something from every conversation. It just depends if you’re looking. Discussing the seemingly “small things of life” can show priorities, goals, values, as well as provide insight into the person’s way of thinking. Discussing my junior high girls’ favorite pop group or movie can give huge understanding to a group’s dynamics or priorities. You just have to be alert during these “meaningless” conversations to grasp the real meat of the discussion.

Extroverts are often labeled as conversational hogs or attention seekers. But, pause for a moment, someone has to start the conversation. Starting a conversation, even with seemingly “meaningless” topics, is important to relationships. It shows interest, it allows others to give opinions, thoughts on the topic. You don’t normally just jump into a deep conversation with a random person. But how does asking, “Where did you get that scarf” open a conversation? Leads to discussion of places to shop, deals found, favorite items, colors, etc. Bits and pieces of information used to keep the conversation going. Now can you have a friendship with someone and not know their favorite color? Of course. Taking the time to learn about people, to know information, to many, this may seem inconsequential. But I would argue this, spending the time to learn about someone else,  that shows interest, and gives value to that person beyond just a face in the crowd.

I love my generation’s attempt to label everything, but always attempting to be different, unique. We’re programmed with this need to stand out from the crowd.  But in this desperate need to be someone or make something of ourselves, we have lost what it means to be a friend. We network, we use people, we learn what we need to know to get by. Be different, learn someone’s favorite color, ask about the small things in life, not just the obvious or surface”y” topics. Obviously this goes both for introverts, as well as extroverts. But sometimes an extrovert feels rejected or hurt when an introvert does not express any interest in learning about them. Sharing is a natural thing for an extrovert, so introverts can be perceived as rude if this same interest is not returned.

Extroverts may not open up easily. Yes, I hear your thoughts “they’re actually WAY to open” but pause again. Self-proclaimed extrovert moment, we use shallow topics to build up friendships to slowly open up on other more meaningful topics.

Bear in mind, I am speaking in generalities. Don’t be offended, these are just observations and personal feelings.

Introverts claim the corner on self-reflective thought and soul searching. I disagree. As an extrovert, I am often reflecting on my behaviors, words, actions. But some difference may occur in that as I reflect on all that is me, I am also analyzing how this interacts with others. How does it make them feel? Am I coming across rude because I don’t start a conversation? Am I coming across shallow because I compliment their outfit? The pressure to entertain, amuse, keep the conversation going is something an extrovert knows well.

I’ll review a conversation multiple times in my head to see where it went wrong, or when the “I’m overwhelmed” face appeared. I would bet that many self-proclaimed extroverts also have these same experiences.

Of course we are human, and all very selfish in our interactions. Selfishness can be seen all across this spectrum. So learn about people different from you, have the pithy conversations, engage in the deep discussions, remember, this life is not all about you.

So these are a few of a self-proclaimed extrovert’s thoughts. Take them as you will. I’m interested to know your thoughts on this topic.

 

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Principles 2-5

To continue on the Principles I’ve gleaned from “9 Things you simply MUST DO” By Dr. Henry Cloud

2.  Pull the Tooth: I hate/love this one. I tend to hesitate, refuse to commit or make decisions… I waste time and energy worrying. Deja vu people do not allow negative energy to distract them. They don’t hang on to the bad stuff. Fix or finish the problem and move on. Stay focused on your heart’s desires and goals. We get stuck complaining, but that does nothing but distract us from what is good. So get to work, pull the tooth, fix the problem–complaining does nothing if it is not used as a motivator for change.

I’m skipping three cause I don’t remember it & so it obviously didn’t change my life…

4. Do Something: This goes along with Principle 2. Ask the question “What can I do to make this situation better?” Don’t be so bogged down by the blame game, how can I take action and make this better?

5. Act Like an Ant: Small steps to accomplish big tasks/projects. We don’t have to have it all together now, but we can be taking small manageable steps towards our goals.

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::That Moment

::That dreadful moment, the terrifying, adrenaline rushing moment when your Patient goes unresponsive.

::That heart-dropping, stressful moment when you open your e-mail to a read of an error that occurred on your watch

::That awful moment when your brain is so foggy you don’t know what to do, you flounder as you search for the next step

All moments that leave lasting memories.

But we grow & learn from these moments. I’ve been told by many people that starting a new job is stressful. The first year as an RN is a year of learning. But being told something & experiencing it for yourself are two very different things.

The stress will continue but it cannot weigh you down. Confidence is gained from intense situations done right, but just as important, situations gone wrong can grow us, stretch us, and leave lasting impacts on our lives.

As I reach the end of my first year as an RN, I look back & see how far I have come. Situations I never thought I could handle I can. Things I used to balk at have become second nature. But there is much more to go. Lessons to be learned, tasks to be accomplished, knowledge to be gained, all come from experiences, both good & bad.

::That wonderful, confidence building moment when you catch a new heart rhythm

::That tearful, tender moment when  you really connect with a patient & are able to encourage them

::That awesome, inspiring moment when you realize…I am a Nurse.

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The Prayer for Patience

So as I posted earlier today today is the day of Patience. I didn’t realize what that prayer would bring.

I have learned many things about myself today.

  • Patience with myself. I have to be patient with myself. When I become frustrated or disgruntled with myself I only succeed in causing more stress. Patience that I will do do everything right, patience when I cannot complete all the tasks the day demands of me. Patience for when I become emotionally tired & I need to take a break. {Patience with myself}
  • Patience in expression. People are not mind-readers (or if they are I’m sure they would not be working at Walgreens!) I cannot become disgruntled with people who do not know what I need. Patience to clearly express my thoughts, and patience to be sure the message is understood. {Patience in expression} 
  • Patience in advice. I love when my friends and I can spend an afternoon chatting over coffee. And I love listening to all God is doing in their lives! It’s so exciting to hear the stories of growth and grace. But so often I am quick to jump in with my thoughts and ideas. Patience is needed to hear the whole story, understand the details, and to give the advice only when it is appropriate. {Patience in advice}
It’s an exciting day when you see your prayer being answered in front of you. 
God wants me to grow. God wants me to draw closer to Him. He will open my eyes to my sin and my flaws. He gives the strength to change!
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