speaking the same language

i think it has something to do with being an introvert.

actually, i think most of what i do has to do with being an introvert.

for those of you who are extroverted and are confused by the people in life who are overwhelmed by social situations, introverts don’t handle small talk well.

for me, this means my ideal way of spending time with people is to go out and get coffee, because it means our conversation delves beyond the everyday, surface level we would discuss in chance meetings and the occasional text message. that doesn’t mean that’s what i have to do; anything that involves spending time with my favorite people is something that fills my love tank.

for instance, the saturday before last, i drove two hours away to my college town to close my bank account and return library books.

(please note that i went to my college town to close my bank account and return library books.)

i also made plans to see some of my friends who still live there since i was going to be there already and hadn’t seen anyone since july. i scheduled morning coffee with my friend P, a quick stop at amy‘s, lunch with my sister, and after that, i was driving back across the state to meet margaret.

i had a Strict Plan…

…which thereafter fell to shambles.

ie. i spent time with my people at the complete expense of the entire reason i went to my college town. that is to say, i did not close my bank account. i did not turn in library books.

and i didn’t even care, because quality time with my favorite people is more important to me than anything. even though i am a type-a, ocd, perfectionist overachiever. yes. that.

i’m huge into personality assessments. i love myers-briggs because i think it tells you everything basic you need to know about a person in four simple letters. i love strengthsfinder because it helps me understand how i function (for example, i’m a visionary who looks to the past to shape direction). i’m intrigued by how the enneagram nuances how i see myself, according to the two former assessments.

and i love figuring out love languages, because it explains a lot about why people do or don’t do certain things in the context of relationship.

for instance, the fact that one of my love languages is words of affirmation is one of the reasons i try to leave encouraging words wherever i go. because when i receive words of affirmation like that, they are priceless to me. priceless. this also explains when all three of my best friends forgot my nineteenth birthday (yes. all three of them. THE SAME YEAR.), i was devastated. all i wanted was to hear “happy birthday” from them, just to know they loved and were thinking of me. it’s not that i didn’t know this, but hearing those two words from each of them would’ve reinforced it hugely.

the fact that gifts is not one of my love languages explains why chelsea hasn’t received her birthday present from me even though her birthday was a month ago. it’s not that i don’t love chelsea or didn’t want to celebrate her birthday. i did! in fact, i think i wished her happy birthday on her blog, facebook, and twitter (words of affirmation…? ;] ). and when people give me gifts, i ask for gift cards. i realize gift cards require approximately zero thought and effort and most people prefer to do a little more than that (myself included), but the more time and effort people put into gifts for me, the more uncomfortable i feel. (is anyone else like this or am i crazy?)

so i had this idea, because i haven’t done it yet either, and i thought it might be a good idea: ask the people in our lives what their top love languages are, then write them down and keep them handy for when christmas and their birthdays come around, so we can love them the way they best appreciate. we might not feel like we’re loving them in the process, but they will feel loved.

let’s start now. tell me what your love language is in the comments (again, words of affirmation… ;] )! if you don’t already know your love languages, find out here, then come back and let me know. if you’re curious about mine, they’re quality time and words of affirmation. you would’ve figured that for an introverted writer, right?

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