Apr 2, 2008


Matthew Yglesias asks why someone who is introverted would be so adverse to talking to others on the phone. As someone who is (at least to himself) a classic introvert (I've had several aha! moments reading the popular Jonathan Rauch article that Yglesias also mentions, so I think I am almost a textbook case), I can only attest to this strange phenomenon without offering any useful theories of my own.

I have trouble calling up people and speaking to them. Without doubt, I prefer emailing them. Even meeting them in person is (sometimes!) preferable. There are several theories in the comments of the above article as to why this would be such a common anxiety for introverts. Some seem feasible, some don't. Under rational scrutiny, it seems extremely silly, but I usually end up trying to get others to make calls for me which I could easily make. I sometimes have to practice what I'm going to say, though I do not necessarily lack spontaneity. It's as if each call is like preparing to ask that pretty girl out but anticipating that the burly and over-protective brute of a brother will have to be negotiated first.

When I get down to it, it's not difficult, but it's a relief when done, out of the dentist's door. Thankfully, I'm not totally neurotic and there seem to be others who face this too. Anyway, perhaps a post on life as a practising introvert some day later with special scorn served up for those extroverts around me who can't tolerate the sweet peals of silence :-).

Till then, this super quote from the comments of the afore-mentioned article:

How do you tell if a blogger is extroverted? When he talks with you, he looks at your shoes.
(though I think the popular bloggers are likely to be extroverted)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Many thanks for that wonderful post..And also for the article on introverts..
It gave me several "aha!" moments as well :-)
I have exprerienced the similar averseness while making calls to people or speaking to them..And to know that you are not alone is simply amazing..!!
Read your others posts too and found them very interesting..Keep it up..!!