Introverted reader avoids others, worried that she’s boring them

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Here’s a question from a reader who’s been quiet since she was small, but since she didn’t make lasting relationships is starting to actively avoid others because by now she feels shy and worries that she’s boring them:

i dont know if i am suffering or its jst me. i hav been shy an quiet since i waz small. as i grew up i talked with everybody in school and stuff. but i dnt hav any special best friends. i thought i did make one in sixth standard.. but i dnt remain in touch with her after i moved to new school. nd here too i talked freely with only one girl . now i am ready to start with my engineering studies and i am scared of making friends.. i avoid my old school aquaintances.. and even my neighbours.. tooo shy to talk ! i think i am becoming a boring person.. even if i plan a girls night out with a few frinds, i cancel it coz i am afraid that thel get bored in my company altogether …

Photo credit: CarbonNYC

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12 Comments

  1. I’ll bet you’re being much too hard on yourself. Since you’re an introvert and do a lot of thinking and analyzing, you may be thinking back over every conversation you have and measuring where you came up short and where you missed the chance to say something amazing! But really, with most people, you’ll do just fine and they won’t find you boring at all if you’re interested in them and what’s going on around you.
    I think you’ll be very pleasantly surprised when you start your engineering studies, because there will be a lot of students who have the same interests and aptitudes that you do. So while you may have actually been a little “boring” to someone who’s only interested in social situations, gossip, and parties, you will most likely find a lot of people with whom you fit well and talk easily.

  2. Sarah McGill on

    I agree with CB – great advice!
    Things that helped me are:
    (1) Don’t worry that you have to entertain every person you meet. It’s also perfectly fine to start with short conversations or chit chat, then if you don’t’ feel a connection, excuse yourself to do something else. Focus on spending time with people you enjoy.
    Also, don’t worry if you currently don’t have a special best friend(s). Sometimes it’s difficult, with people moving off to new schools, new jobs. For some phases of your life, you may have a wide variety of friends rather than a few close ones.
    (2) At your school, try to join a few clubs in your interest area – there are probably Engineering clubs, as well as other clubs at your student union for languages/cultures, art, sports, etc. (E.g. I joined French club and Pottery club.) Not only do you get to meet new people, but also they are a lot of fun!
    (3) Learn how to be a good listener. (There are tons of books on this.) If you are a good listener, you will more naturally be able to hold a balanced conversation and find topics to talk about.
    Best wishes!

  3. I think that the best way to avoid having a boring personality (or being perceived as having such anyway), is to be widely read on a number of different topics: from politics to music, technology to sports, fashion to economics, etc. That way, you always have something fresh and exciting to talk about when either you or another person brings up a new subject.
    Sonny@Kids’ Crafts´s last post ..The Wizard Chooses the Wand, Mr. Potter

  4. I believe there are people who can express themselves more in writing rather than expressing their thoughts verbally. If you think you are an introvert person, why not make it up on another aspect? Me, I admit I can express my feelings and thoughts more through writing songs, poems, and articles.

  5. I had the same problem in high school and the first part of college; I’m a junior now. Although I never felt boring, exactly, but I felt that people expected me to be entertaining and that has just never been me. I’m the quiet, background person and I’m good with that. I still have a couple friends from high school I see every now and then, but when we’re together I hardly talk. I usually just listen to their conversation and they’ve gotten used to it.
    Anyway, I’m still working through this a little bit, but something that helped me quite a bit was just realizing that going out to parties and getting drunk doesn’t make someone interesting; it makes them social. Social does not equal interesting, although a lot of people will try to tell you otherwise. Relax, be yourself, and let people take you as you are. There are people- not many, but they are out there- who will be patient with you while you open up. One of my best friends hung in there for almost four years waiting for me to just relax a little around him.
    But the most important thing is to never cut off contact. Trust me, I tried this as well, and not only is it too isolating even for an introvert, but you’d be surprised at how fast and how easily depression will settle in, and that is someone you don’t want to have to deal with.
    The best friends are the ones who don’t expect you to be entertaining, they just enjoy your company as it is. And once people learn what to expect from you they will accept you more for it.
    One final thing that has helped me is to develop any talents or skills you would like to have. I’m teaching myself guitar and, even though I can’t sing to save my life, I’m planning on starting voice lessons too. It may not come up in every conversation, but at least when people ask you what you like to do you have a ready answer for them.
    Besides, you’re going into Engineering and I find that extremely interesting. You’re an introvert, there isn’t a more interesting group of people on this planet, in my humble opinion. Just hang in there, don’t lock yourself away, and hold out for the people who will take the time to dig through that deep mind of yours. They are out there because I’ve found them; all you have to do is let them in a little. I know it’s hard but that’s an entirely different post. 😉

    • thats really nice of you…. i know this is toooo late… but i called sum of my friends during the winter vacc… i had a really nice time … they allowd me to b mself….

      • Oh, no, never too late. 😉
        And I’m glad to hear that. Stick with those friends and people like them, and you’ll be fine.

  6. With all your realization. I guess you know what to do. You have to think that you might suffer in the end if you don’t fight this introversion. I guess being introvert can be treated so long as you want to be treated.

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