I consider myself an introvert; however, I don't like to use the term out loud because there seems to be a stereotype around it. When I hear the word introvert, I automatically think negatively about someone who doesn't have friends, doesn't talk to people, and overall is an odd person. I used to believe the stereotypes because they were the ideas that society told me. I've learned to embrace my introverted sides and not let the negativity bring me down.
First of all, every stereotype that I mentioned about introverts is wrong. I have friends. I may not have a lot of friends, but I do have several close ones. I like to work on my friendships by really getting to know my friends. This is why I like hanging out with people in small groups rather than large ones. It's also more manageable for me to not be thrown into a large crowd.
Introverts can be labeled as shy. I don't consider myself shy at all. I don't have a problem going to talk to strangers when the situation calls for it. Instead of being an outgoing person, I'm just quiet and tend to take a backseat when I'm in crowds. I think if you ask my close friends that once you get to know me I like to talk. Once I get to know you, I have no problem with starting the conversations. If you just give me time, then you will see the type of person I am.
As for an odd person, I think everyone is an odd person in their own ways. So I don't think introverts deserve the label of being weird people who stay in the rooms by themselves all the time.
I love talking to people in small groups and actually hate being by myself. Unlike extroverts, I sometimes need time to myself so that I can re-energize before the next activity. This doesn't take anything away from me, but it just means that I need my own ways to recover. Sometimes I like being surrounded by people even if I don't know them so that I can have a sense of community where ever I am.
I like to take things at my own pace during the day, and I enjoy activities that don't always involve other people. Sometimes I enjoy being alone in my room reading a book or sketching. These things help take my mind off the my busy life. This doesn't stop me from making plans to hangout with other people when they ask.
I love being an introvert because I get to spend time with people, and I also can do things by myself to get to know myself better.