We never like thinking about our faults, our flaws and our insufferable frailties as human beings.
How many of you actively ask the people around you: "well guys, what sucks about me today?" so that you have something to work on to better yourself as a human being? Not many.
The truth is, we like running from the truth most of the time, especially when it involves us and our imperfect behaviors.
So if you're ever, ever lucky enough to have a person who cares about you so much that they're willing to tell you what stinks about you ... and deal with the ensuing crap from you, be thankful. They just saved you years of self-annihilating discovery - they just presented the cold, raw and painful truth to you, so that you won't continue to make the same mistakes over and over again.
I'm lucky enough to have one such person in my life, and as a level-headed objectively minded thinker, Sol put things pretty straightforward: "as an introvert, I think you tend to be self absorbed". I'm paraphrasing of course, but the comment came after some thoughtless behavior I had carried out in the kitchen (possibly including eating another person's food absentmindedly and not offering to make anything else for them once discovered). It's not much, but it made me curious and begin to question: are all introverts this way?
10 Signs of the Self Absorbed Person
How often do you as an introvert, make a mistake and sit dwelling on it and how bad you are ... instead of actually actively doing anything to change it? How often do you notice yourself dwelling too narrowly on how you think and feel, compared to how others will think and feel? And how often do you place your "me time" above the people around you?
Funnily enough, Google seems to think introverts have some kind of self absorption complex as well. Type in "define: introvert" and one of the first results that comes up is:
"A shy, reticent, and typically self-centered person."
... not that I actually agree with that definition of introversion.
So, after doing a little research on self absorption, I came up with these signs, which may help clear the air. (Note: like me, you probably aren't all of these. But see how many you are, and let me know below!)
#1 You put your needs and wants before any other person.
#2 You're overly subjective. You fail to see the big picture and tend to focus too much on how you "feel" about things instead.
#3 You have an "entitlement" complex, and expect to gain things without putting in any work (basically reaping and now sowing).
#4 You don't embrace people who are different from you. There is always some "bad guy" in your life, whether your mother, boss, sister or the overly gregarious extroverts you meet.
#5 Your conversations mostly end up focusing on you ... or else, you believe that most people you talk to are inconveniencing bores.
#6 You filter everything through "you" shaped glasses. For instance, whenever you're expected to do something for others, you consider how this will personally affect you first.
#7 You're careless and don't consider the impact your behavior may have on others.
#8 You spend a lot of time dedicated solely to yourself and what you want to do.
#9 You tend to be excessively self-pitying.
#10 You make a drama out of the tiniest things which don't settle well with you (basically because you love the spotlight).
What You Guys Said
Basically, the point of this article is to help you questions yourself. So what's the general consensus on whether introverts are self absorbed or not, anyway? I went to Facebook, Twitter and Yahoo Answers to find out. Here's what you guys said, and as you can see, the opinion is as varied as a UN conference!
- No, it means you like your own thoughts so much that you don't busy yourself with others all the time to drown them out. ~Introverts Unite (Facebook)
- Ironically, I can be an introvert cuz people that are "extroverts" trivially talk about themselves - that's boring to me. ~ Toss (Yahoo! Answers UK)
- There are plenty of self-absorbed extroverts that would put your question to rest ... I guess the greater question for you then is what "self-absorbed" means to you. I tend to need research for clarity. ~ Carol (Twitter)
- I don't think so. From my experience, extroverts are more than happy to talk about themselves. I've found it frustrating when I've had extrovert friends who suddenly disappear when I don't want to listen to their problems for once and need to talk about me. ~ Jane (Facebook)
- What does "self-absorbed" even mean? It sounds like some altruist buzzword to me, to attack people who aren't hopelessly dependent on other people to form their opinion. If that's what self-absorbed means, then I'll wear self-absorbed as a badge of honor. ~ Nathaniel (Facebook)
- Yes, but I don't see anything wrong with that. So many are absorbed by careers, children , bills, and all manner of things. Nothing wrong with being self absorbed, because when it's all said and done you came by yourself, you will leave by yourself, make peace with yourself. ~ Kevin (Facebook)
- Yes somehow and not at all, it also make me more emphatic. ~ Soile (Facebook)
- Maybe a little self-centered but not selfish. ~ Sensitive INFJ (Twitter)
- I don't know, I think it depends on your definition of introvert, extrovert, and what it means to be self-absorbed. I think introverts might seem more self-absorbed because we tend to keep to ourselves and are always in our own head. on the other hand, extroverts may not seem self-absorbed because they are always in everybody's business but just because they are talking with other people doesn't mean they are more open or appreciative of others. ~ Grim (Yahoo! Answers USA)
So ... what are your own conclusions? Let me know below!
Photo by: Angelo de Mesa