An Introvert’s Silence
I have often wondered, why we people misunderstand each other, even when we are speaking a coherent language which is comprehensible on both ends? It has been a never-ending question in my mind.
When we use verbal language to speak, we overlook how much our bodies are subconsciously speaking for us. While we can be deceitful through our words, our body language, tone of voice, facial expressions, postures and gestures will always reflect the truth.
Wait. How can we forget silence – the most powerful tool of communication?
If used at the right space, at the right moment, and for the right span, silence speaks volumes.
An Introvert’s Silence
Coming to introverts like me, silence has been a saviour. We already have a bad reputation of being quiet and we cannot do without silence, like you guys cannot do without your best friend. We take refuge in silence – angry? We go silent. Contemplating? We go silent. We want to ignore you? We submerge ourselves in silence.
Introverts are often misunderstood (not you people’s fault. I totally get this.) My friends and other acquaintances have this constant complain about why I’m always giving them silent treatment (obviously, gives my well-coveted silence a bad name!). But most of the time I am not stonewalling them, I am simply lacking words and hence my silence.
Good news for my fellow introverts! In this article I will try to interpret the meaning of my ( as well as, numerous other hopelessly-struggling-to-socialize introverts’) silence so that others don’t have to keep speculating what storm is about to come.
What Does An Introvert’s Silence Speak?
1. “I don’t want to face you.”
This one is big for introverts. This simply means we are not in the mood to start another ‘who did what’ conversation with you, or maybe because we missed your 23rd call and have run out of excuses for not answering it. Whatever be the reason, we don’t want to confront you. It simply sets us in a repeating circle of draining energy and pushes us to retreat into more silence
So, If you see me shrouded in dead silence when you are around, looking deeply focused on thoughts, you need to exit my space. Because right then, the nothingness in front of me is more interesting than you.
2. “I am dying to make you mine..”
..but I feel too awkward to admit that.”
Most often introverts are silent around someone they genuinely like. It’s their way of communicating how they are imbibing the essence of the other person’s presence through the tranquilizing effect of silence.
Complicated? Not much.
I know it’s a bit weird but I completely go silent before the person I am interested in while my mind is exploding with imaginary conversations.
3. “Ummmmmm…….” contemplating
This one is not exclusive to introverts. Every single person out there is quiet when in a contemplative mood. Excuse us. We are majorly in this state. We love to reflect deeply on a subject before we express anything through words.
Also, attentively observing our own train of thought lets us organize our words before we blurt them out.
Smart? You bet!
4. “I am watching you.”
Observation – one of my favorite pastimes. Introverts love spending time observing others and getting to scan them beyond their superficial self. They not only note the way you move, stand; the way your lips move, your eyelashes flutter, your hair strands fall across your face but also those subtle, blink-and-you-miss-it expressions on your face, the depth of your eyes.
No. We are not cheap stalkers. We are engaging ourselves in the astounding art of behavior study! We are connecting to you in silence.
5. “I really don’t like you.”
I will completely deny your existence ( please don’t challenge an introvert in this silent treatment game, you will regret!) if I do not like you. I won’t even return your smile (either way I won’t) or reply to you with ‘hmm..huh..oh.” if I lack interest in you.
Too many people make an introvert uncomfortable and they have no time for people who don’t matter to them.