I grew up between two extroverted sisters. They like taking charge. They like being the center of attention. They like Christmas caroling.
My mom is an extrovert too. She talks to random people like store clerks and I never do. The other day when I told her I was no good at being in charge, she said of course I was. (If I ever tell her I'm not good at something, she usually argues that yes, you are.)
Because she's good at being in charge, she thinks I must be too.
I'm an introvert. I don't like small talk. I don't like being around large groups of people. I like to stay home.
Sometimes it feels like the world caters to extroverts. I had an idea for a youth conference. All the other youth leaders thought it was a bad idea. Not "fun" enough. I was telling Adam and he agreed with them. Then Emma, who was also listening, piped up. "I think it's a good idea. I'd like that. But, I'm an introvert."
So much of my job as a young women president requires me to try to be extroverted for the extroverts. (Even though they aren't all extroverts. Emma, for example.)
I used to think I was deeply flawed in some basic way. It was sort of freeing when I realized I am not deeply flawed, I
am an introvert.
Being an introvert seems to give me permission to avoid situations that I don't like. I can decline social events. I can stay on the perimeter of the room. I can tuck myself into the corner at ward council.
Because I am an introvert.
I keep thinking about this article I read, though. It's titled, Am I Introverted or Just Rude? I realize that I can't just hide behind being an introvert. Sometimes you need to show up to be supportive and kind. Sometimes you need to engage in small talk with someone because maybe they need it.
Sometimes, when you are young women president and it's one of the Time Honored Traditions around here, you have to go Christmas caroling.
(You don't have to like it, but sometimes you have to go.)