Today's blog is inspired by this TED talk I came across this morning on my Facebook feed with Susan Cain, author of "Quiet: The Power of Introverts In A World That Can't Stop Talking". And yes, I have read this book.
It's true. I wrote about this yesterday, about needing time alone in order to get down into that deep well of creativity. When Susan Cain talks about her grandfather pulling from all the different sources he read to craft a sermon for the week, I get it. That is often how my blogs work, like my very own little sermon to everyone. Or maybe no one. That is not the point though. I have to write for writing's sake, even if no one ever reads it. But, at least one person usually reads what I have written. If anything I say can impact even one person, I feel like I have done my job.
My other favorite part of this talk is though introverts do tend to carefully guard what is in their suitcase, sometimes we need to open our suitcase and show others. Again, it is the "input vs. output" I wrote about yesterday. So, tonight, for the first time in a very long time I am going to read some poetry at a local Open Mic. It is probably not the best poetry, maybe not even good poetry, but it is something I feel I need to do. And I find often that something you thought had no relevance to anyone turns out to be the very thing people need to hear. But if you do not share, they will never know.
I have been called boring, mellow and told I am no fun. I have had to teach people that my need for time alone is just that, my need for time alone. It is not personal, except to me. I cannot write a novel if I cannot get alone. I do not like to work much in groups when it relates to my writing, because it interferes with my ability to tune everything out and get down to work. If you can write in groups, awesome! I myself need time to create in space before I go out into the world with it. Kind of like a seedling. My work needs to be protected until I feel it is strong enough to stand on its' own. It is not fear, it is simply the way I work.
And do not get me wrong, I love extroverts. Some of my very best friends are extroverted, and I desperately need that balance lest I do become too inwardly focused. The world at large needs to understand we need all of us. Think about this...I wouldn't be sitting here typing on my Macbook without the work of an introvert. But the Macbook would never have gotten out there without the work of extroverts. See? Being extroverted is no more valuable than being introverted, and vice versa. But just know that when I shut myself away, it is so I can come out better, with something to give to the world. And that is just as valuable as being the most boisterous at a party.