A couple of weeks ago while at dinner at our friend’s house, we were talking about.. well, I actually can’t remember. The reason I am telling you about a conversation that I cannot remember, is because what was said while in discussion was what stuck out.
What was said, was that someone who doesn’t share much of him or herself, shows a level of insecurity. A lack of confidence. And the reason I can’t recall the topic is because I instantly had a sort of Aha moment of reflection for myself. The rest of the conversation no longer mattered. Is this what people think of me? It’s no secret I am an introvert. But, insecurity?
I’m not so sure. I did think on this for quite a while. It was one of those moments, where when the statement was made and the speaker made eye contact, you overthink and start to wonder, was that about me and directed at me? (When it wasn’t.) Upon further analysis, I think to some degree, sure. That would be accurate that I don’t share much with many people and it would be to protect myself to some degree.
As the famous saying goes: “You wouldn’t worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do.” From my extensive people observation, I have learned that most people find their turn to speak much more important than taking in the words that others say. So why share so much of myself, with the more casual of acquaintances? I reserve my stories and words for the true friends. If someone wants to get to know me, they will, if I feel comfortable sharing. So maybe that is also a method of control.. if I want to share, and if I trust you, you will also know me better. As I write this I see that trust is the common denominator with protecting (me) and trusting (you).
A little less then a year ago, I also overheard someone I know, telling someone else, who was sitting in between us, say while describing someone that she was ‘so introverted, it’s painful.’ I knew they were talking of someone else but I also knew, to someone as extroverted as she, that to her, I could be described in the same way. This is an example of how not sharing much of myself can be seen as lack of confidence. Thinking on that statement and how it could be applied to myself as well, has since made me unsure of how to ‘act’ to try and appear not as introverted. To the point where when my family was hanging out with herself and her family, I felt like I was making all the conversation and was met with mostly shortened answers. The effort was all there on my part. Reflecting since then, I know that ultimately I will just be myself and not try to be anything other than that. While writing this and coming to terms that trust is a big piece for me, I know I can’t and won’t force trust.
Silence is something I have gotten acquainted with, so I will never feel the need to speak just to break that silence. I like people, I enjoy talking to people and I enjoy great conversation, and I have never felt the need to speak to anyone that will listen. So just maybe, not sharing displays self assurance and confidence?