Balboa Park, San Diego, CA, ADS 11/2014
I’m in a contemplative mood this morning. I’ve eaten a healthy breakfast, a new routine I established for me and David. I have a warm cup of tea beside me, soft music playing, and several good books beckoning from my iPad while a couple of hard covers call “pick me up and read me.”
While I was in California, thanks to my son Richard, I discovered Pandora radio. For a mere $5 per month I can listen to the music I like and not be burdened with CDs or commercials.
I like solo instruments, mostly stringed instruments and duos, trios, at most a quartet. Beyond that the instrumentation drives me nuts. My parrots are very quiet while my music plays. Music to calm the savage breast they once said.
David likes the full orchestration with Russian composers, so while I listen to a single piano player, he blasts his ears in the bathroom as he shaves. Poor David you might think. But he has a mega sound system in his car, and I know he will blast himself when he goes out later. Plus, if I go anywhere he uses the sound system in the living room to the maximum. I know this because the dogs told me he eats candy and plays loud music when I am away.
But you never go anywhere, says David. I’m an introvert and we introverts cannot stand overstimulation so we stay in our cozy nests most of the time. We like the solitary life which is why some of us do hours of research on one thing or another, live with Mountain Gorillas, or write novels.
A minority of the population, Introverts are the most misunderstood people in the world. They don’t like parties of any kind or any gathering with more than 4-6 people. They especially don’t like crowds where they are recognized by several people. They like to slip in and out of places like church or the grocery store without being recognized. They love gardens, nature walks, and libraries where talking is verboten.
Years ago, my son Richard and I were walking through the John Muir Woods and I whispered to him. Why are you whispering he asked. Because its a cathedral I said.
The NYTimes reported recently that researchers have found that Introverts aren’t shy, but they avoid situations that overstimulate them. It’s a chemical thing, apparently. We do well in the woods.
When I had a stroke and was hospitalized, my office collected money and asked people to sign a ‘get well’ card. The gal who organized it told me later she was surprised by the number of people who knew me and came forward to sign the card. I still have the card, a memento of that day when the folks in my office realized I had many friends although I never went bowling with them or attended a wedding, baby or most farewell parties.
Introverts are best at one-on-one relationships. Public speaking distresses them. I did a lot of the latter at one point, and found a way to do less of it by changing jobs.
Introverts don’t want to be managers or supervisors. I found a way to do less of that by changing jobs.
This week, David Brooks wrote a piece on a recent study which showed that as we age we grow happier. A U-shaped curve he said, happiest in our twenties and in later life. People 80-85 are the happiest the study reported. A good reason to extend life beyond age 75, especially if you are a retired Introvert.
Muir Woods, National Monument ~ Wikipedia