17 Way-Too-Personal Confessions of an Introvert

An introvert makes a personal confession.

I’m your classic introvert. I love being alone, reading or just letting my mind wander. If you meet me at a social event, you probably forget me quickly, because I’m quiet. I’ve never been the most popular person in a room, and I’m okay with that. Basically, I fit the textbook definition of introversion to a T.

Here are 17 confessions about me as an introvert.

Confessions of an Introvert

1. I really do want to be left alone most of the time.

I love my friends and family, but being alone feels so good. Being alone means reading, writing, or doing the things that really matter to me and that put me in a state of deep concentration and flow. It means getting to have things my way, without having to take other people into account.

I don’t constantly need other people to entertain me, and honestly, the types of things that most people do to socialize don’t interest me much, anyway.

2. I find most of the things that people talk about to be boring.

I’m usually not that interested in what typically passes for conversation. Making small talk just to be polite feels contrived (although I often end up doing it anyway because it’s expected of me). I’d rather have one small moment of connection with someone than a thousand insignificant ones.

3. Chances are that if you ask me to hang out last minute, I’ll make up an excuse not to go, even if I have nothing else going on.

My mind is always naturally making plans. Hardly a day goes by when I don’t have at least a general idea of what I’m going to do. If I planned to stay home and “do nothing,” then that’s what I’m excited to do. If a last-minute social event comes up, I have trouble shifting gears and making headspace for this new idea — even if it’s something I might enjoy.

4. And yes, sometimes I lie to get out of social situations.

Yes, I know I should be taking the high ground and explaining that I’m an introvert who gets drained by socializing, it’s nothing personal, blah blah blah. I often do that.

But other times, like when you invite me to your birthday bar crawl this weekend that involves dozens of coworkers I only vaguely know, I’m only thinking about not hurting your feelings and how I can maintain a good working relationship with you. So I say I have plans even if I don’t.

5. Sometimes I get so overwhelmed with noise and people that I cry.

Last week, after a week-long vacation that involved lots of socializing with people I didn’t know well and spending a lot of time in noisy, overstimulating environments, I burst into tears in a coffee shop.

6. I’ve hidden in a smelly public restroom when I needed a “people” break and I’m not ashamed.

It’s how I hid my crying attack in #5.

7. So much of what happens in my head is noise.

Yes, I have those deep introvert thoughts about life existing on other planets and the contradictory nature of humanity. But if I’m being honest, sometimes my introverted superpower of deep thinking goes too far in the wrong direction. I spend hours going over and over an argument I had with my significant other, coming up with new and better rebuttals. I get stuck on one insignificant detail, such as whether I should pack a lightweight sweater or a general-use jacket for my upcoming trip.

8. I really only like a handful of people.

I have a small social circle in part because I’m an introvert who prefers it that way, but also because I don’t meet a lot of people who I click with.

9. I feel like I’m faking it when I meet new people or network.

Make eye contact. Use your “loud-confident” voice. Ask her about herself. There are many tricks I’ve learned over the years to appear more social and confident. But they are just that — learned tricks. “Peopling” will never feel completely natural to me.

10. I’m better than my first impression.

An extroverted friend once told me she thought I was “a bitch” when she first met me because I was quiet. I wasn’t trying to be rude. I just tend to hold back around people I don’t know well. It takes time for me to feel comfortable enough to let my real personality out.

11. A lot of conversations move too quickly for my introverted brain to keep up.

Introverts tend to need time to think before speaking. Sometimes my brain feels like it’s running on dial-up while everyone else is using high-speed.

12. I’m bad at showing how I feel.

A boss once told me she thought I lacked “passion” for a job I was excited about. Men I’ve liked or dated had no idea at first that I was into them. I tend to keep my feelings on the inside. Often, it just doesn’t occur to me to let them out.

13. Sometimes I wish I could disappear.

And by that I mean leave all my obligations behind, turn off my phone, and find a quiet, sunny corner of the world to read and eat chocolate in — alone. But only for a little while.

14. I champion being alone, but sometimes my solitude becomes loneliness.

I crave love, companionship, and soul-connections, too. The problem is these meaningful relationships are hard to find. Most of socializing is just fluff.

15. I silently cheer every time my significant other has plans.

We’re both introverts, so we end up at home a lot. We live in a one bedroom apartment, which doesn’t leave us with a lot of space to escape each other. When he leaves for his weekly gaming group or the occasional dinner with a friend, I’m in introvert heaven.

16. You can cancel plans on me last-minute. Really.

Even though I may say, “Oh, that’s too bad!”, most of the time, I’m pretty excited to unexpectedly have free time to myself.

17. You’re amazing, I just suck at keeping in touch.

To all the people in my life: I truly, deeply, madly love you. You are the people who make my world go round. I’m sorry I’m so bad at picking up the phone and texting/calling. I get lost in my own little introvert world sometimes. 

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Jenn Granneman is the founder of IntrovertDear.com and the author of The Secret Lives of Introverts: Inside Our Hidden World. Jenn is a contributor to Psychology Today, HuffPost, Susan Cain’s Quiet Revolution, Upworthy, The Mighty, The Muse, Motherly, and a number of other outlets. She has appeared on the BBC and in Buzzfeed and Glamour magazine. Jenn started Introvert, Dear because she wanted to write about what it was like being an introvert living in an extrovert's world. Now she's on a mission: to let introverts everywhere know it's okay to be who they are.