I’ve written before about my being an introvert in ministry and about introverts doing evangelism. Given my nature, I’ve not really fretted the fact that I’m working from my home during the global coronavirus threat. In fact, I would probably enjoy it were it not for the fact that this virus is taking lives around the world. Nevertheless, here’s what I’m learning about myself:
- I get more work done from home than I do in my office—but not for the reason you might assume. That I get more work done at home is probably not a surprise. What might be a surprise is that I easily get distracted by people when I’m in my office. I may not want to hang out with them all the time, but I don’t want to miss anything, either. I’m introverted, but activity catches my attention.
- I want—and need—relationships more than I ever thought. Not having opportunity to be with my work colleagues or my church family has been much more painful to me than I would have ever dreamed. I miss their encouragement and witness.
- I need to take more walks with my wife. Because I travel a lot, I like just “chilling” when I get home. I don’t really want to see a bunch of other people—including those neighbors who walk the path behind our home. Last night, though, I took a walk with my wife to get out of the house after being “socially distant” most of the day. You know, it wasn’t a bad deal for me to take time to walk with my wife, greet neighbors . . . and realize how selfish I can be with my time.
- I should build more reading time into my busy life. I’ve enjoyed having more time to read over these past weeks. Reading not only takes me outside of myself as I listen to other writers, but it also equips me to have more confident conversations with others around me. That confidence helps push me beyond my introversion.
- I use email and texts too often to communicate when I could simply call somebody. I teach my students to use their phones to talk to others, but I’ve realized that I don’t always listen to my own advice. As I’ve reached out to others who’ve been housebound, it’s actually been fun to talk to people and to hear their voices. I need to make myself do that more often.
- It’s easy to bury my head in the television. Everything is changing so rapidly that I think I’ll miss something if I’m not always listening, so the TV is almost always on these days. It’s made me wonder how often I get lost in a television program regardless of what the show is. Indeed, I’m learning why my wife gets frustrated (kindly, though . . .) when I’m watching TV and don’t hear her when she’s talking to me. My inattentive introversion can be a problem.
If you’re an introvert, what are you learning these days?