Being a shy introvert can feel like being a walking contradiction. Your mood and energy level often depend on how much alone time you’ve had lately. How outgoing you are depends on how comfortable you feel around the people you’re with. And there’s so much more. Here are 25 contradicting things about being a shy introvert that I’ve experienced. Can you relate?
1. Wanting to be left alone but not wanting to be lonely.
2. Wanting to be invited to social events but not always wanting to go.
3. Wishing other people would notice you but avoiding the spotlight at all costs.
4. Having deep thoughts every day, but when you try to explain them, they never come out quite as eloquently or profoundly as they sounded in your head.
5. Wanting to have deep conversations with other people but not wanting to get the ball rolling by making small talk.
6. Wishing you had more friends but not wanting to actually introduce yourself to new people.
7. Being known as the “fun/quirky” one when you’re with close friends, but being known as the “quiet/shy” one when you’re with people you don’t know well.
8. Being praised for how confident you were while giving a speech or presentation (you rehearsed for hours); fumbling your way through small talk with your classmates or colleagues afterward.
9. Knowing the answer to the question the teacher asked but not wanting to raise your hand and have everyone look at you while you talk.
10. Having an idea or question in a meeting at work but being too shy to speak up.
11. Quietly doing a great job on something at work or school but not wanting anyone to make a big deal about it.
12. Wanting to get away from a long-winded extrovert but not knowing how to interrupt them or exit the conversation without seeming like a jerk.
13. Wanting to hang out with your significant other or best friend in the same room but not wanting to actually talk to them.
14. Being hilarious and clever while texting or messaging online; being awkward and shy while talking to someone IRL.
15. Desperately wanting to find your soulmate but being terrified to say hello to your crush.
16. Being told at work or school that you should speak up more; being told by your best friend or spouse that you talk too much about your niche hobbies or interests.
17. Feeling just fine but everyone keeps asking, “Are you okay?” because you have Resting Bitch Face (or Resting Sad Face).
18. Caring so much about the people in your life and treasuring all the intimate, fun moments you’ve had with them but rarely telling them how much they mean to you.
19. Getting sad because friends don’t invite you out but then remembering that you haven’t texted/reached out to anyone for months.
20. Wishing you could loosen up and have fun like everyone else but your overly self-conscious thoughts stop you.
21. Wanting to sleep but not being able to turn off your overthinking mind.
22. Wanting to talk about something that really matters to you but worrying that everyone will be bored by what you say.
23. Going out with friends on a Saturday night even though you know you’ll get an introvert hangover.
24. Wanting to make an impact on the world but not wanting to leave your house.
25. Wishing you had just one person who understood your weirdness but wanting to be alone most of the time.