It’s been almost a year since my original post about being quiet and how people tend to like to point out the obvious. https://strictlyunstructured.com/2017/05/22/thanks-for-pointing-out-how-quiet-i-am-i-really-didnt-know/ While I still get the occasional comment that “you are so quiet,” or “I forgot you were here because you don’t talk.” I’ve realized that people sometimes say things just to have something to say, even if their comments not well thought out or true.
To an introvert, whether a child or an adult, the world can seem like a bombardment of noise and pressure. Many introverts have laser-sharp focus when working on creative or personal projects, but can’t focus on a single word when two or more people are talking at the same time. Sometimes I like to work from a coffee shop to break up the routine of working from home. I usually go in around 8am and enjoy about 3 hours of calm focus. Then, the lunch crowd comes in. Without fail the lunch crowd brings in a huge array loud, distinct voices and laughs. I never know what is quite so funny, but the lunch crowd seems to laugh like kids snorting milk in a school cafeteria. To name a few….there is the high pitched, bird-like laugh; the deep, loud laugh that sounds like its being produced by a voice synthesizer; and the cackling laugh. Sometimes I even hear a laugh in the mix of it all that is so unusual that I start to laugh myself. Other times when the laughter and roaring voices mix together, it’s enough to cause this introvert to high tail it home!
In my first post about being quiet, I made a point about how my daughters are constantly told they are quiet or shy. For my youngest, it’s an excuse to not answer people when asked a question. For my oldest, it is becoming a more concerning problem that is causing her anxiety. I continue to teach them to ignore labels and to focus on their natural gifts. As introverts, it is important not to resist we you are, but rather to find our unique strengths. Since social skills classes are non-existent in schools, it is time that we all start to accept and notice the “quiet ones” in our lives. After all, they have the best, most contagious laughs.
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