Anyone who knows me knows that I am very interested in Myers-Briggs personality types. Similarly, anyone who knows would not be surprised to find out that I have been typed as an extrovert on every single personality test I have taken. I do fit quite a few of the stereotypes such as being a generally loud person who likes being around people. However, there are some stereotypes of extroverts that I do not fit into. Here are a few of them:
Some people think that because extroverts are good at small talk that we enjoy it. I don’t know about other extroverts but I personally dislike small talk. I am somewhat good at it but I would much rather have a conversation where I get to know a person well than have a filler conversation about the weather or how tired I am that day. My favorite types of conversations are ones where I hear about things people are passionate about.
While I do love to be around people, I still need alone time in order to function at my best. I do gain energy by being around others (especially having a deeper conversation) but if I don’t get my time by myself to process, I become tired and irritable. When I’m stressed or busier than normal, I have to be especially mindful of getting my “recharge” time.
Because I can be good at small talk and I am generally a fairly bubbly person, I can sometimes come off as a superficial person at first. It really irritates me when this happens because people underestimate my intelligence and then are surprised when I have insightful things to say. I enjoy intellectual conversations and would much rather have a conversation about Plato’s Republic than what happened on The Bachelor.
- I do not love public speaking
Just because I am generally comfortable with people does not mean that I am always comfortable speaking in front of people. While it is something I am getting better at, I used to get really bad stage fright before I had to speak. However, it is something I am going to have to get more comfortable doing because I am an education major and will spend a large chunk of the rest of my life speaking in front of people.
I can’t speak for all extroverts but those are a few common stereotypes of extroverts that I do not follow. If you’re an extrovert, what are some stereotypes that you defy?
Like quite a few other college freshman in the world, I changed my major this past year. A lot of people have asked me why I changed and I’ve tried to condense the story into a few sentences but that doesn’t fully explain everything that went into my decision. Here is my attempt to explain my reasoning for changing.
The thought of changing my major first came during orientation the first weekend of freshman year which was before classes had even started. I came into college as an Early Childhood Education major and I was in one of the breakout sessions for all the education majors. The professors who were leading the session asked us to raise our hands based on our major. When the ECE majors raised our hands, the majority of the room raised their hands. I remember thinking, “There’s a lot of us… surely there aren’t that many jobs.” While it seems a little superficial, that was the first time the thought of changing my major entered my head. This was especially important because I had never even considered a field of education outside of early childhood.
Throughout a lot of the first semester I wrestled with wondering if I had chosen the correct major. In my first education class, during a lot of the projects I saw myself with older students a lot more than I could with younger kids. During the fall, I also got involved with a local youth group that was mostly middle school students. They were overwhelming at first but they grew on me and I found a love and passion for that age group I hadn’t found before. After talking to some professors, fellow students, and other mentors, by the end of the fall semester I was seriously considering changing to Middle Childhood Education.
In the spring, I had my first field experience. At the end of the fall when I was still on the fence about my major, I had prayed and asked God to use this field experience to help me make a thoughtful decision. For my field, I was placed in a kindergarten classroom in a school about a ten minute drive from campus. While I enjoyed my time in the classroom, I found that I struggled to explain concepts in a way that a five or six year old understood them. I was also quite overwhelmed with the thought that one day I might be in charge of an entire room of six year old students all by myself. After several weeks in the classroom I made the decision to change my major.
I am now a Middle Childhood Education major with concentrations in Language Arts and Mathematics. While my classes will be a bit harder now, I am excited for this change. I am especially excited because with my gifts and passions I think I will be much better equipped to use my teaching as a ministry in this age group. While so much of the future is uncertain, I am excited to see where God leads me on this crazy amazing journey that is life.