Do you want to ‘come out of your shell’?

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KeepWaiting
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28 May 2022, 7:05 am

Do you ever feel like people are just waiting for you to be normal? Like they see the potential in you? I have always been a sort of quiet awkward introvert. I embraced it and have no regrets, I have had some good times and being real has allowed me to make some really good friends. Still, at the same time, I have always been aware that I live in a shell that I want to get out of. I don’t know if life would be better or not. When I was young, I was so, so shy. I’ve improved some. Back then, I felt comfortable around people that had wild eyes. It took me years and years to realize that. I gave it a lot of thought. Maybe I could find the real, the wild, in everyone. I don’t know.



ToughDiamond
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28 May 2022, 8:28 am

When the kind of people I can relate to are around, I'm usually sociable with them. I also have an interest that might be called extrovert - performing music alone or in groups. So I wouldn't call myself "in my shell" particularly, though I don't spend a very big proportion of my life interacting with people these days, and it's been like that for much of my life. I'd prefer the balance to be more on the social side, so that I wouldn't feel quite so lonely and anxious about not having people around to run my plans and problems past for a second opinion. Rather than hiding away in a shell, I think my problem is more that I'm just not very proactive, so most of my social life has been the result of other people inviting me to join with them. And I'm not good at coping in social groups larger than 2 people, and I don't think I ever will be, so that rules out my being in a lot of the places where social interactions take place. There's not much point in being out of my shell if nothing pleasant is going to happen.

I'd be content if there were a few more "like minds" around with whom I could interact one-on-one, i.e. a bigger weekly dose of the same thing as I have now. But I don't want to reinvent myself into a super-socialite or do anything profound like that.

I don't think anybody's waiting for me to be "normal." I think it's more that I'm not particularly noticeable so people don't notice me. I doubt that people are thinking about me in that kind of depth.



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Yellow-bellied Woodpecker
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28 May 2022, 8:54 am

“The most important thing people did for me was expose me to new things.” -Temple Grandin

I like this quote. I guess I am not proactive at making friends, either. And, I’m not so good in groups. I become reserved and have a tough time jumping in. I used alcohol to try to counteract that, but that doesn’t work so well all the time. I think about eye-contact when I think about being able to relate to people. I wonder if everyone, deep down, is able to connect. I don’t know how to explain what that means. Maybe, if I were out of my shell, I would understand human connection a little better.

“I doubt that people are thinking of me in that kind of depth.”

I like this quote, too.



AprilR
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28 May 2022, 9:05 am

No i don't want to come out of my shell. I want to have friends but i want them to respect me when i withdraw and keep some things to myself. I don't want to get too close to anyone.



Dillogic
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28 May 2022, 10:20 am

We'll all have our own definitions of shell, I guess.

I came out of such fully last year. I think I just hit the point of too much suffering from mental illness and life stressors that I lost my fear which kept me hidden. I'm asocial by nature, socially impaired by disorder and illness, but that's different; I'm not hiding any extroverted individual, because that individual doesn't exist. I hid who I am and didn't really share anything with others, nor did I want anyone near me, which led to things eating away what was inside of that shell and making me retreat further and further into a smaller one, leading to worsening of mental disorder and illness, which in turn made me withdraw from the world.

So it goes, though.



Joe90
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28 May 2022, 1:02 pm

I'm not as shy as I used to be but I can still have shy moments. Or sometimes I seem more shy than I am, because usually people are having a conversation that I have no idea what they're talking about so I just sit quietly. I like it when people talk about other people that we know or just mundane everyday stuff without much detail.
Otherwise, I don't share a lot of knowledge with people. So it's not necessarily that I'm shy, I just don't always have much to contribute to the conversation. Also sometimes my stupid quiet voice gets drowned out by noisier people and nobody listens to me.


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jimmy m
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28 May 2022, 1:26 pm

KeepWaiting wrote:
I guess I am not proactive at making friends, either. And, I’m not so good in groups. I become reserved and have a tough time jumping in. I used alcohol to try to counteract that, but that doesn’t work so well all the time. I think about eye-contact when I think about being able to relate to people. I wonder if everyone, deep down, is able to connect. I don’t know how to explain what that means. Maybe, if I were out of my shell, I would understand human connection a little better.


My mind works very differently than most NTs. I think deeper thoughts and as a result my brain reacts much slower than most NTs. By the time I decide to enter a conversation. The conversation has moved onto other subjects and I am out of phase. If I say my thoughts, the group will look at me strange because they have moved on and I am trying to go backwards.
So first they are confused and second they do not want to return back to the original conversation.

I do not have direct eye to eye contact. As a result, I am viewed by others poorly. They think my motives are evil. But I am a friendly person. I found out that if I cover my eyes, NTs are not able to read my eyes and I become as close to normal in their eyes as possible. They make very interesting glasses that are almost one way glasses. I can see out but other people cannot see in. And the right glasses have very little shading so I can almost wear these glasses indoors.

I do not live in a shell. I am me and if someone does not like me, I can live with that. I stay me. In a way I am unique. I think differently than most people. It is just my brain works differently. But I can live with that and sometimes I can use it to my advantage. It is like I can do things that others are unable to do because my mind is different.


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28 May 2022, 1:30 pm

No, it’s cozy in here.


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28 May 2022, 1:46 pm

if I don't have to force it



ToughDiamond
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28 May 2022, 3:50 pm

Joe90 wrote:
sometimes my stupid quiet voice gets drowned out by noisier people and nobody listens to me.

I don't see it as a bad thing to have a quiet voice. For some reason I don't feel right talking loudly so I just try to stay away from noisy people, because I'm sure they'd never notice anything I said. Theoretically I could compete with their volume - after all I can sing louder than a lot of people - and that would be the way to get heard, but it wouldn't feel right for some reason.



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28 May 2022, 4:35 pm

I have a chronic illness so I only have good days once in a while. I enjoy those days when I'm thinking clearly and able to make conversation.

I used to feel trapped by lack of confidence. But now that I'm older I know what to say and how to make conversation, so I can get some enjoyment out of it now and I've managed to make some friends now.

But I watched the DS9 episode Chrysalis the other day for the first time in 20years and I remember relating to Serena. The way she was trapped inside of herself and then set free. I really liked that episode. (We'll ignore how creepy Bashir was for this conversation). She was freed to go and explore the stars. I kind of related to Bashir too because I could never find anyone to relate too myself.

But now I feel isolated because I just don't have much energy to socialise.



Lady Strange
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28 May 2022, 4:43 pm

I used to be very quiet, and I know as I've gotten older it has gotten easier to interact with others to an extent. It is tough because on one hand it is important to try to extend yourself at times, but you also don't want to burn out. It seems to be a balance that has to be struck. Not being super quiet all the time around everyone has enabled me to find a few nice people to be around which is a plus. I'm still never going to be super talkative though.



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28 May 2022, 8:00 pm

My tie-dyed shell protects me from the world.


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kraftiekortie
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29 May 2022, 5:10 am

If one has a few friends, one is probably not too much within a “shell.”



Twilightprincess
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29 May 2022, 6:06 am

kraftiekortie wrote:
If one has a few friends, one is probably not too much within a “shell.”


Not necessarily.

A person might not confide in those friends or do stuff with them all that much.


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kraftiekortie
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29 May 2022, 6:50 am

That’s possible.

Still, having friends at all is still much less isolating than lacking friends.

I had very few to no friends in high school. When I started working, I had friends at work. We didn’t do much stuff together, nor confide in each other. I still felt less isolated than when I was in high school.

I guess it’s a matter of personal experience.