The quiet reporter

The upside of being an introvert

More stories from Sadie Sedlmayr


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Introverts keep to themselves and are most at peace in the comfort of their homes, and that’s okay.

Whenever I say I’m going to college for journalism, the looks I get from people are priceless. Perhaps as first impressions go, I don’t give off the happy-go-lucky, bubbly, people-person vibe which seems to be the norm for those whose days are filled with interviews.

According to an article written by Margarita Tartakovsky, an Associate Editor for Psych Central, almost everyone in the world are introverts at their roots.

“They just prepare and practice really well, they draw from their strengths,” Tratakovsky wrote.

As far as personality types go, I lean more towards the introverted side.

From grade school to high school I was known as “the quiet kid” in the back of the class who didn’t socialize much. Shocking, I know, because if you ask my college friends, me being outgoing isn’t even in my vocabulary. I’m more of the go-to friend for advice, always have something to say, quipster type.

Similar to Disney villains and Kanye West songs, introverts are often just misunderstood.

One misconception Taratakovsky wrote that’s placed upon introverts is that we simply dislike people in general.

I am here to dispel that myth and tell you the truth. I actually like people a lot. I find them fascinating. Yes, I would prefer to study them from afar or behind the curtains, but they pique my interest all the same.

I just embrace the freedom of solitude and look forward to the comfort of alone time more often than I like going out and socializing, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

For as long as I can remember, being an introvert was often seen by many folks as being more of a negative personality trait than a positive one. More often than not, we’re put with the stigma of having a gloom and doom, brooding mentality mixed with an unapproachable aura, which is simply not true.  

I am none of these things once a person gets to know me, yet the label is still there.

When I was young, it always seemed extroverts had it made from the start. They were the so-called popular ones at my school; the people who everyone naturally flocked to and wanted to be friends with. I always envied how mingling in crowded social settings and being the life of the party was as easy as breathing for them. I recall habitually wondering if there was something wrong with me since I wasn’t like that.

Eventually, I gained insight as to why I wasn’t like those sought-after, charismatic people, whom I begrudged growing up. I discovered that it wasn’t my choice. It isn’t my preference to have all eyes on me. I’m more of a low-key person.

For instance, I’m more apt to be scrolling through the pages of a novel piece in the library than bar hopping with a group of friends. I’ve always been like this and always will be.

It took me far too long to realize that being this introverted is not a bad thing. Appreciating the depths of my own solitude is far more rewarding to me than worrying about what other people think of me.

Throughout the last couple of years, I have become at peace with my introverted self.  

Since making the adjustment from high school graduate to college student, I have found it to be less of a challenge to make friends. One might think the opposite would be true for introverts. Generally, letting our guard down and inviting people into our inner-circle can be pretty terrifying.

Nonetheless, it has gotten easier especially during my time spent as a reporter for The Spectator student newspaper, creating and building bonds with people.   

That being said, I don’t exactly have a long list of individuals I can call my friends. What I do have is a close-knit, ride-or-die support system whom I know will always be there for me and have my back. I don’t put myself out there unless I know for certain it will be worth it.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with being an extrovert. I’m somewhat of an extrovert in my ability to adapt to my surroundings and fit my manners toward others. I am capable of being one when I need. It’s just being an extrovert is not who I am in my heart. Nor will it ever be.

Perhaps I could choose another profession, that suits my temperament better. But I’d rather not. It gives me no greater joy as a writer to have all the events in the world at my fingertips. I don’t know how to do anything else and I can’t be anybody else other than who I am.