Saturday, December 21, 2013

Alone


I often wonder why our culture seems so shocked by the fact that some people prefer doing certain things alone. Whenever people hear that I often shop, eat and watch a movie by myself, the most common reaction is "why?"

I've given up trying to make people understand. I'm just wired that way, and no words can fully explain it. It's not that I'm antisocial. I simply enjoy the aforementioned activities with or without company.

Our culture is obviously quite extroverted. It's become somewhat of a social stigma to be alone in a public place, and God help you if people find out that you prefer it that way.

Is it really that hard to grasp the concept of some people needing more alone time than others? Since when has it been a taboo to enjoy spending time with yourself?

I've never asked an extrovert these questions. I do understand why they enjoy going out so much, because I enjoy it too. Just not on their level nor frequency. Prolonged social interactions tire me out, even when it's fun.

That's kind of a problem, because people often mistake me for an extrovert. When I'm with good friends, I'm loud and bustling with energy. I drop joke after joke while chugging down the booze like a hardened sailor. But I can't keep that up as long (or as consistently) as true social butterflies can.

That's when I get asked the somewhat annoying questions. "Bakit ang tahimik mo bigla?" "Uy, okay ka lang?" Relax, people. I just need a break. Or maybe I'm just bored with the direction we've taken with this night's topics.

When I'm with people, I need a good variety of talking points to stay focused. I don't mind discussing the newest pop trends or crass showbiz rumors, but those things get tiring after a while. I much prefer to have deep, meaningful conversations. I want to talk about topics that matter (to me, at least).

Unfortunately, not everyone knows or cares much about these things. Sometimes, it seems like I'm wasting my time trying to explain my perspective. And the sad part is, I'm not even trying to convince or sway them to my personal biases. I just want a have an impassioned conversation, one that's thought-provoking and honest. Is it really that weird? Isn't that what makes us socially intelligent beings?

If I can't get that from being with people, is it any wonder now why I prefer being alone?
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