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The Confessions of an Anti-Social Extrovert

Updated: Jun 9, 2022

I’m the guy at the party, but I’m not the life of it. I’m off to the side, up against the wall listening to Mark and Lisa talking about how they aren’t planning on staying out too late tonight (which I know is a lie). I’m watching the TV through the crowd with the sound barely loud enough so I have to dub my own version of the show. I’m taking the moment in with the people around me.

Most nights I’m alone, but I love being surrounded by people. I’m the guy at the concert that went alone, but had the time of his life. I’m imagining the couple next to me telling their kids about this concert one day. I’m watching the drunk person to my left getting taken away by security, but imagining what drove him to drink so much tonight. What’s going on at home? Is everything okay? Does somebody have cancer? Did he lose his job?

I constantly struggle with wanting to be alone and wanting to be surrounded by people. It's a juggling act that I haven't been able to master yet. When I'm alone, I'll check my phone periodically to scroll through social media and will experience the inevitable "FOMO" (fear of missing out). I want to be invited to those game nights, social gatherings at bars, those concerts and sporting events, but at the same time when I'm at those events; I can't wait to get home. It's a constant struggle and sometimes it causes me to be a bear around people. It's not intentional, but at the same time, it's something I'm working on. I want to be present and enjoy the company I'm with. I want to be off of my phone more when I'm with company and when I'm alone so I don't have that urge to feel like I'm missing out.

In today's day and age, this anti-social extrovert thing isn't so uncommon. We all want to be in the photos, but we also can't wait to be somewhere else. It's found in the "maybe's" when it comes to Facebook events and party invites. We wait for the better things to come along and in hopes that something will. Whether or not that event actually happens remains to be seen.

I’m the guy at the bar reading a book because I’m tired of looking at my phone, but I need something in my hands otherwise I’ll drink myself drunk. I need to keep my mind occupied because it eases my anxiety. I’m the guy who still watches romantic comedies by himself and looks for them unfolding in his everyday life. I look for those crazy, stupid romantic gestures to pop out, but also for the simple ones that often go unnoticed like a hand in a back pocket. I’m the guy that is quiet, but that’s because I need it to be quiet in order for me to be a good student of life.

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