An Introspection on Introversion

This short essay I type is not a book review. I will not try to analyze writing styles nor comment on research methods. I will not express praise nor make critique. I would, however, like to thank Ms. Susan Cain, author of "Quiet. The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking". Reading through the pages of her book, I attained a better understanding of myself and gained acceptance of what and who I am.

All my life I have been a timid and nervous human being. In times of desperation, I have succeeded in putting on a stern and confident facade. But that's exactly what it has been. A facade... an artificial or deceptive front. Designed to fool everyone except for myself.

As a toddler, I preferred to seek refuge under my mother's armpits while the other kids joyfully made friends and fearlessly climbed the jungle-gym. I would have been, as Ms. Cain described, a highly-reactive baby. Sensitive and intolerant towards people and my surrounding environment. Not to mention my very early adoption of anxiety. 


As I became an adult, other traits of the introvert have moulded me into my current existence. I have blamed my lack of assertiveness and conviction as the cause of being passed over for promotion and career advancement. Always averting situations of conflict. Never wanting to be the cause of other's pain. 

But in a different perspective, I am happy and even proud of what has transpired today. My introversion had kept me on the straight and narrow when I was an adolescent. I was never going to be the alpha male, but hey... at least I didn't break too many hearts, was never a womanizer, and I didn't do drugs. The introvert's nature is to consider the cause-and-effect factor upon making decisions. Wisely, I looked before I leapt. 

So what if I never made top management when working at the corporation. I will never achieve Steve-Jobs-status, nor ever come close to being as popular as the Kardashians (thank God!). I won't ever be the motivational speaker and make a million bucks. But I have my weekends to myself and loved ones. And I sleep very well at nights. 

The book touches on how introverts have a tendency for self-introspection. The introvert needs time alone to re-energize the body and soul. Thoughts and inspirations are often expressed through the written word. And this probably explains why I write. 

Thank you Susan Cain for your insightful literary work. I look in the mirror these days and I see the resourceful soldier ant, Not the bloated queen termite. I have more resemblance to Mahatma Ghandi than Genghis Khan. And in this world we live in, I Am A Lover, Not A Fighter. 


September 2013

© Prakoso Sastrowardoyo 2012