I am an introvert – really! I mask it well most of the time as I learned to speak out early in my career and developed more social confidence as I moved into senior management. I try to emulate Rick, an extrovert who was always interested in others. He was very well-liked because of that and other wonderful traits — I try to go for respect as I feel that’s a more attainable goal for me than being liked.
In fact, I’m an INTJ in Myers-Briggs terminology. The second letter stands for intuition, which I have not used for what seems like forever. As I have taken the test multiple times, I’ve discovered that when I am stressed the “N” changes to “S” for sensing. I have not been able to trust my instincts for a protracted period of time; these days, I have to touch and feel things to be sure of them.
A perfect example of my current state of mind happened at a recent social event for singles in my neighborhood. I thought it was about time to: 1) perhaps meet some other single women, and 2) try introducing myself to one or two single men. I scored on both. One man talked to me exclusively (except for the frequent interruptions of other women who wanted him on the dance floor) and asked me out. I have contemplated dating someone, down the road, and have developed a list of qualities and shared interests which would be important to me. This man, while very pleasant, had none – none – of the qualities on my list.
So I did what many women in my situation would do – I accepted his invitation.
Yep, no “N” for intuition in that decision!
The next morning I reviewed the evening in my mind, berating myself for being too eager to go on my first date since becoming a widow more than a year ago. I used my “S” sensing skills and ranked this very nice man against my very firm list of attributes and once again saw no correlation.
So I did what this woman should have done the first time – I turned his invitation down after all.