PW #114: Introverts vs. Extroverts

The new Polyamory Weekly #114: Introverts vs. Extroverts is up! Direct download is here.

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0:00 Introduction and host chat
Intro, under-18 warning and re-direction to www.scarleteen.com; friend me on Twitter and answer questions about what you want on the show, call 206-202-POLY with comments

2:30 Listener Mail
K responded to PW #109 on meeting metamours–she considers it a requirement and tells a story with the moral “if she doesn’t tell me so herself, it isn’t happening,” Rob from North Carolina on the issue of soulmates from PW #112 and New Relationship Energy vs. love as a product of the work you do to keep a relationship going; 8:20 Psi comments on PW #108: Poly and the Prisoner’s Dilemma says that if you go with the strategy of cooperation, you can’t fail; 11:15 HomeDespot blames country music for cheating being more socially acceptable than polyamory

12:10 Poly and the Double Standard, Redux
Rob Twitters that double the number of partners is standard :-); Becsplusmolly suggests that women with children see that monogamy provides security; GBBarnacles enjoyed the Hot Bi Babe discussion; Savanni comments that some men are earning the “Hot Bi Babe” title for themselves!; Darkmane shares his secrets of how to get a Hot Bi Babe; 15:15 Moose calls in an audio comment about stripper pole at campgrounds and hey, was minx naked that weekend? :-); Nytemagik also enjoyed the naked discussion; 16:30 D’gou takes exception to PepperMint’s use of the word “letting” with respect to his partner; PepperMint clarifies that the word “let” refers to boundaries that he has set for her as well as boundaries she has established for him

19:15 Topic: Introverts vs. Extroverts
This article by Jonathan Rauch on the care and feeding of introverts was the subject of much discussion when I posted it here and to my own blog (the comments are a great discussion); minx discusses the idea that introverts can be seen as aloof or snobby; Rauch clarifies that introverts simply find other people tiring and suggests that introverts find a way to state that in social settings; minx suggests extroverts learn to cope with awkward silences and that even extroverts need time to recharge; Aiyume mentions on the Myers-Briggs scale; 26:30 some really great observation on introverts from the Poly 101 session on Poly for the Introvert in Austin, Texas; UFO comments that he only gets worried when people comment that he’s not having fun; Steve Eley used improv comedy and podcasting to break out of the introvert mold; 31:45 SweetAinsley comments that introverts and extroverts view conversations differently–extroverts focus more on flow and dislike pauses; introverts seek out pauses and don’t talk just to fill space; minx shares what is going through her extroverted head during a pause in conversation; Badmagic comments that extroverts don’t necessarily “draw energy from other people” while introverts don’t, but rather it’s a spectrum of how much recharge time folks need; he suggests that introverts try just listening, but be warned people might overshare; 36:40 Karen comments that introversion makes trying to find a job really difficult

38:45 Wrap-Up
Next week: Polyamory and Judaism–if you have info or are willing to talk on the show, please email me! Today’s bumper music for the introversion segment and outro music is “The Assumption” by George Hrab.

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email cunningminx@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 206-202-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at polyweekly.libsyn.com. Thanks for listening!

If you like the intro music, check out Pacemaker Jane, a cool band out of Ohio.

4 comments to PW #114: Introverts vs. Extroverts

  • Donut Rooter

    Great podcast, Minx!

    I learned a lot about introverts, and now I’m beginning to think I’m an extrovert. ;)

    Love the song at the end, too. :)

  • Vir Modestus

    Great show Minx!

    There are two elements of the Jonathan Rauch article that I find most helpful in talking to Extroverts (being quite the introvert myself): the first is that Introvert does NOT equal shy! They are not the same thing at all and confusing the two brings about a number of problems. You can be a shy extrovert or a person- and social-loving introvert. But where you get your energy from and how you process information are different for both.

    That is where I disagree with BadMagic. Only an extrovert would say that it is a continuum of how much “alone time” is needed. Which brings me to the other element of the article I liked: the world is run by Extroverts and we Introverts just live in it. Everything is based on extroversion being the norm and those of us who are not Extroverts are considered somehow off. (Not too far different from the situation that the world is run by monogamous types and poly’s have to constantly explain ourselves.) It isn’t about “alone time” but it is about where I get my energy from. I am drained by interactions with others, particularly those I don’t know well, but even those who I do. Getting back to where I can recharge is a necessity and one I’ve fought hard to recognize and take for myself. Even when my sweetie, who lives a thousand miles away, comes to stay, I *have* to find time to myself or I get really “crispy.” It sucks, but there it is.

  • Laralyn

    I just subscribed to the podcast and listened to some old shows. Great stuff! But.. there’s one thing that really peeved me in the introverts vs extraverts show.. you _became_ an extravert and you _used_ to be an introvert? and introverts are lame people who appear rude and make everyone feel awkward, while extraverts are awesome?

    Being an introvert has many up-sides- like for instance being more aware and observant of what you are feeling and why- which, helps articulate your feelings, especially if you’re doing something liiike sayyy.. negotiate rules for an open/poly relationship?
    So please.. say that you gained social confidence, or that you learned to relax and enjoy gatherings more.. but don’t just say you “became” an extravert.

    I know extraverts who can party for a whole week, every day all day.. but they can’t express themselves and they have communication problems in their relationships. I’m sure that equally, those people could learn how to be more self-aware and communicative.. but deep down, it’s not in their nature, they have to learn it.

    And.. also, the nature vs nurture debate is ongoing hereā€¦ with studies pointing to actual physiological differences in brain function. So, it’s not even clear that you can change from introvert to extravert at all. However, it is possible to be shy and become more confident socially. Shyness is not the same as introversion, though I bet it’s often combined.
    I don’t mean to judge where you are on the scale- for all I can tell, you could be a born extravert who used to be shy. Or you could be a natural introvert who learned to be more outgoing and sociable- or maybe you’re in the middle of the scale, and probably there are a bunch more factors that I can’t see.

    But.. It struck me as arrogant to point out “I used to be an introvert, now i’m an extravert.. but.. for even I, the shiny example of extraversion that I have become, still require time alone to recharge after 36 hours.”

    As I said, it’s possible that introversion/extroversion is simply born and nothing much you do will make more (on average) blood flow to the areas of the brain dealing with internal processing, or more to the areas dealing with sensory experience.

    In the show you say introversion is not a disease, but you sure treat it as such.. I think hardly one positive trait was mentioned! It was all just about “overcoming” it.. and.. introverts should keep track of each other’s “social energy”?? What am I meant to be tracking my glucose levels too?
    Sure yes, social skills, like Steve Eley points out, can be learned by doing things like podcasting and stand-up. However those are learned skills and have nothing to do with where the blood wants to go in your brain.

    The lady who, upon hearing that she’s introverted, said “It’s great to know why im dysfunctional in certain parts of my life.” Was just the kicker for me. Like you pointed out.. the word dysfunctional is a bit much. She goes on to say she has a “great job for an introvert.. data entry all day”.. I was like, wtf? Introverts are self-driven people who can work independently on challenging and worthwhile projects! But she acts like she has some terrible disability and she’s just grateful to have some employment simple enough for her to handle.

    Ugh! Do extraverts complain about having more fleeting friendships than deep, long-term friends? Do they complain how their lacking analytical skills and short concentration span diminish their chances of getting jobs? About how they were partying in college rather than being more studious? About how its harder for them to be self-reflective and figure out what’s going on within and how this causes problems in relationships sometimes?

    Well..? Do they? No, they don’t. And nor should they, because all those things, while being more likely traits of extraverts, can be modified by learning some skills, and thus the extraversion or introversion should not be used as a scape goat for a persons failures or perceived areas of ‘disfunction’, thus giving the person the feeling that they just “ARE” this way and can’t do anything to affect their circumstances.

    end of rant!

  • Kayle

    Thanks for the stfu. What extroverts normally do is so controlling! Note to extrovert: you are trying to make ME do something because YOU’RE uncomfortable. Hello!! NOT cool. Deal with your own stuff.

    Question to extroverts: Do you ever think you’re just using people by “getting to know” them for your own enjoyment? That’s what it feels like when you don’t jump into conversations and intimacies (even small talk about things that might be personal to the other person but not even important or comprehensible to you) without paying attention how the other person feels. can you think about it? (I hear some of you don’t know how to self-reflect or think it’s necessary, which TERRIFIES me in a relationship context). What do you think?
    Another note: Really good (skillful) extroverts will find something better to talk about that is interesting to both of you. And if they can’t find something at all, well, you’re probably not meant to have any relationship at all (what would you build it on???) Why not learn to be okay with that instead of needing have the other person fulfill your immediate needs just for that social setting?? and why judge them for not fullfilling them??

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