Public speaking, large crowds, meeting new people- these are things that many of us struggle to be comfortable with doing. But if you’re anything like me, you were born to be a “people person”. Being the dictionary definition of an extrovert,
(a friendly person who likes being with and
talking to other people: an outgoing person,)
has a lot of advantages. You’re the life of the party, lead all the group projects, get the lead roles in drama club, become the president of this or that society... There is this inexplicable magnetic pull between you and wherever the people are. Even though undeniable charisma and exceptional social skills come naturally to us extroverts, interacting with people isn’t always a piece of cake. Here are some struggles us social butterflies face on the daily.
1. We seem “fake."
As extroverts, we take pride in being nice to other people- it brings us a sense of inherent joy to go above and beyond to make someone smile, bring someone out of their shell, see them being socially adventurous when they welcome our interactions with positivity. Pretending that we’re too cool to talk to people is boring and tiring; chit-chat is way too fun to pass up! Unfortunately, kindness and bubbliness is oftentimes seen as a sign of weakness, something to be taken advantage of. It gets us labeled as many types of incorrect stereotypes such as: social try-hards, ditzy, naïve towards the miseries of the world. In reality, just talking to other people is probably the easiest (and most enjoyable) thing we do all day.
2. People sometimes find us annoying.
If we’re talking a mile a minute, we’re sorry. It’s just that conversation and people get us really excited. It’s almost like that feeling a dog gets when lots of people want to pet it and it starts wagging its tail so hard that it’s gonna fall off-- yeah, that’s the feeling we get. But we're humans.
3. It seems like we’re always screaming.
Actually, you’re right. We’re probably always screaming. It’s the whole “excited” thing.
4. You don’t know if we’re being nice or flirting with you.
Part of being an extrovert is the ability to get along with all types of people, regardless of what circles they run in or what personalities they have- people just like us. And we like them back- we chat, make small talk, and genuinely get to know others. However, sometimes people who aren’t used to having someone else be so interested in making conversation with or learning about them take our kindness as romantic advances. It’s flattering, but trust me when I say on behalf of all us extroverts: We don’t have a crush on you- we’re just being nice, decent people. Crazy idea, right? If we did have a crush on you, believe me, you’d know.
5. People always pick on us to “break the news."
Being someone who likes conversation comes with the assumption that we like talking about everything. So sometimes our peers will make us messengers- we do the breaking up for our friends, we tell our co-workers that they’ve been “let go” we tell mom which kid is the one that knocked the urn over. It’s as if being good with words makes us automatically down to say all of them, good or bad. So don’t shoot the messenger. But at the same time, being an extrovert pretty much means that we say it like it is, so most of the time we’re willing to pass along the info.
6. Saying it like it is tough to do, but we do it.
Because we don’t mind being the source of information, we tend to say what needs saying whenever it needs to be said. We aren’t the type of people to need others to deliver our messages. Being honest and upfront with people is so essential to successful inter-personal communication, but doing it isn’t always easy. Sometimes, as extroverts, we forget that it’s not as simple for other people to talk about the hard stuff as it is for us. Keeping in mind that we have to be sensitive towards the needs of others is important, but so is making sure that we care for our friends and family. This is a challenge, because at times we have to tone ourselves down or scale back on our big personalities in order to give others the chance to express themselves in ways that are comfortable for them.
7. Friendship is in abundance.
Honestly, to say this is a “problem” is the biggest falsehood I could possibly come up with. This is actually what I feel is the best thing about being an extroverted person. Luckily for us, our sunny dispositions get us into a lot of social circles spanning across a wide spectrum of interests. We learn about so many people who have an innumerable amount of hobbies, and because of that, there’s always something to do or someone to hang out with. You are literally never alone. If you’re similar to me, you seldom want to be. Everyone is just a call, or a text, or even just a room away.
For a social person, other people are such a joy and source of livelihood. There would be no extroverts without the amazing people we meet who ignite the fire in us to be social.