I'm tired of being an introvert

I’m tired of double and triple checking everything mentally to be sure everything is perfect before I say it.

I’m tired of wincing internally about things I’ve said just because I’ve said them and I have an overdeveloped sense of shame.

There’s so much I want to say and share with other people, but it’s just not in my nature to do it … and it sucks! Don’t get me wrong… I’m not an agoraphobe nor a misanthrope (most of the time). I have a wonderful support system, people who love me, a few good friends, a romantic life–this is not a self pity thread–well, not entirely. I just wish I could turn the volume up!

And I’ve been here long enough to know that this is a common complaint, and that it’s not a big deal, all things considered, but I just felt the need to vent a little bit.

Anyone ever successfully turn up their own voice in their life? How’d you do it?


That’s not introversion, that’s anxiety.

Yes, it sounds like you have anxiety problems. Unlike introversion, those are highly curable. Therapy is the best start, it can help you understand why you have shame and an inability to express yourself to your satisfaction, and come up with new ways of thinking and acting which can make you more healthy, happy and functional.

I’m highly introverted, I also have a history of anxiety disorder, snd I was very shy for many years of my youth. I am no longer shy at all, and only periodically have anxiety issues. Years of therapy, some time on medication, and a lot of reflection and work on myself outside of therapy led to a much improved me. I’m still a gigantic introvert, though.

Thanks to you both. I know that CBT has been helpful in making me at least functional, but I’d always assumed it was all stemming from the introversion. But yeah, I’m pretty damn anxious too!

I agree with the others. Introversion, shyness, and social anxiety are all different things which are often confused. Introversion is a perfectly ordinary trait and should not cause you any particular emotional distress. If social interactions are as stressful for you as you say, then that points to a real problem, not introversion. Fortunately, these kinds of problems can be helped by learning to think about your interactions in new ways. Medication may also be helpful.

It might be good to read a few books that celebrate the introvert way of being . Paradoxically, it might lessen your social anxiety. Olives / spice weasel recommended a nice book . I am typing on my phone and cant find it at Amazon now …


I also agree that introversion is not causing the things you consider problems. I often make the distinction - I’m quiet, not shy. I have no problem speaking up when I have something to say. I’m also a big ol’ introvert, and I make no apologies for that and like it just fine - I recharge by being alone, doing my own thing.

I think what’s going of for you is some perfectionism, mixed in with a lack of self-confidence. We all say dumb things sometimes - no one is perfect.

Lastly, have you listened to other people? I wouldn’t worry so much about sounding dumb.:slight_smile:

Understander, you’ve got classic social anxiety & low self esteem.

Get thee to a therapist, but failing that there are some excellent books. Here is one that’s on my shelf and I can recommend:


Be sure to do the exercises, worksheets, etc - don’t “read it once,” regardless of which book(s) you use or they won’t be effective.

A lifetime of self-talk and conditioning got you where you are and therefore there’s no quick fix, but there are fixes that come easily enough with a bit of patience and persistence.

Hope this helps…

I was very shy until I started forcing myself to chime in. Sometimes I said stupid things and was horribly embarrassed afterwards. I’ve been in and out of therapy my whole adult life and been on a lot of different medications but mostly, I learned that the bottom line is…nobody cares. Really. We’re all too caught up in our own selves to be worrying whether somebody else is screwing up. It took time but now I’m likely to be the one to initiate a conversation. My family says I’ve never met a stranger but it didn’t used to be that way.
And sometimes people don’t like what I say. I don’t care. I have as much right to talk as anybody else, if I feel like it. And sometimes, like my stepfather used to say, I have to talk to myself in order to have an intelligent conversation. :smiley:

Combined with your signature this is really funny! :smiley:
(OP, the support group Maastricht’s sig mentions is for the advanced classes!)
Just a question OP: how does this distribute amongst people and groups? Is there anyone or any group where you feel you can be yourself and express yourself? Family around the dinner table? Your two best friends? Your siblings? Your dog? I don’t know if figuring that out might help, but you didn’t mention it in the OP.

Introversion, as I understand it, means expending energy in the company of other people, where an extravert would gain energy from company. You might still be an introvert, but that shouldn’t really mean that you can’t speak your mind in a social situation.