Saturday, September 14, 2013

Day 41 of 365: Introverts and Parties

Today is it: the Day of the Housewarming Party. I've been logging in some 12-hour days (and even more on the days that I teach tai chi), cleaning and unpacking and sorting (and consolidating). And, what felt like all of a sudden, the house turned from an elaborate box fortress into an actual home. The boxes in the basement are tameable. The rooms have been vacuumed (or swept and mopped). Windows Windexed, wood furniture Pledged. Now we just prepare and wait and pray that people actually show up.

My husband and I are what they call "social introverts". It sounds contradictory -- and downright the wrong definition of my husband -- but it's true. I know I fit the bill of a social introvert: I love social gatherings, but am very hesitant around new people. It takes a lot of energy for me to make smalltalk (unless I've had a few too many glasses of champagne ... or am in Model Me). People who know my husband might find the idea of him being an introvert at all quite preposterous. He's got a very outgoing and charming personality and has very little problem talking to anyone in the room about any particular topic (for a real fun show, ask him his thoughts on Twilight and the changing world of vampires in books and just sit back).

I've already talked a bit about Carl Jung. But, truly, without Carl Jung, we wouldn't have any of those "23 Signs You're An Introvert" articles on the internet. His findings on introversion changed how the world saw what were originally considered "loners".

The biggest thing about introversion versus extroversion is where you get your energy from. Do you get your energy from being around others, or do you get your energy from spending time alone? On the flipside, does it take energy for you to be alone, or does it take energy for you to be with people?

At the end of the day, it takes a lot of energy for both my husband and I to be around people. We love it, and we constantly seek it out, but we always end up back at home with our bodies draped across the couch, a smile on our faces, as if to say, "Finally. Now we can recharge."

Throwing a party is actually the best thing a social introvert can do. Here, the introvert is in charge of the guest list, meaning that they'll know everyone who is coming over. The introvert is in charge of when people show up. The introvert is there from the very beginning, making them able to greet friends one by one as they come (instead of stepping into a crowded room and hoping to nudge in on a conversation). And furthermore, the introvert can always slink away and recharge under the guise of, "I'm going to clear this table." or "I'm going to prepare more hors d'oeuvres."

Granted, in this instance, I don't know all of my guests (we invited our surrounding neighbors and we have only met one of them once or twice), but it's still a good situation for a social introvert to be in.

I just hope someone remarks on how settled the house is after only two weeks. Because I logged the man hours and hot-damn if I'm not proud of what I got accomplished.

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