Introvert vs. Extrovert

I will tell you the quick and easy truth to homeschool is that you have to be stuborn as. . . tenacious.  Honestly, if you can truly, and I do mean truly, grasp that meaning, and you know you can live it, then homeschooling is very much a possibility for you, should you choose.

Regardless of how tenacious you are, there are still many, many, things that can kick you in the rear.

One of them, that is so overlooked is whether or not YOU are an introvert or an extrovert and where you may fall on that scale.

I have a friend that is so incredibly extroverted I am constantly amazed.  One of her sayings is that she can’t stand to walk into a place and not know a friend.  Therefore, if she doesn’t know anyone when she walks in to a place, she immediately seeks one out and generally walks away with at least one friend added to her list.

Her whole family is extroverted. . .even the one child she has deemed is actually an introvert.  I guess when you are so far on the spectrum, it is easy to mistake a mid-line personality for the other side.

Ah, but you are probably sitting there looking up the definitions of introvert and extrovert just to make sure we are talking the same language.  Those definitions can get so hairy though, let me keep mine simple.

If you find being around people drains your internal batteries – you are an introvert.

If you feel anxious because you have had “too much” alone time – you are an extrovert.

Personally, I am an introvert, and at the opposite end of the scale as my friend.

Now, how does this effect homeschooling, you may ask?

For the extrovert, homeschooling occurs at, well, home.  As in around only those that live there.  And other people who you know are probably at work, or have their kids in school and going out for coffee or shopping, or something else.  (And because I am so not an extrovert, I really can’t say anything else with any authority.)

So, you may be thinking that the introverts have an edge here.  Except that they find themselves at home with everyone else.  ALL. THE. TIME.  Like, your bathroom breaks are a welcome relief, and if you have little ones those don’t even count as it is guaranteed every time you get the 15 seconds of peace in there, someone will have had a diaper blow-out, or fell and started bleeding, or. . .

(Did I mention, I fall under the introvert category?)

There are other pitfalls as well.

Due to the fact that extroverts are not getting their personal attention quota they tend to sign their kids up for all sorts of activities.  It makes sense as it gets them out around others, but if they aren’t careful they will overextend themselves, and while they may not find themselves taxed with the social interaction, they may find themselves taxed with the timelines and the commitments away from home that actually take away from the prime committment, which is schooling.

Introverts will have to deal with a huge guilt factor.  They will have no desire to get out and get their kids into activities that will call upon them to be around even more people.  And what is the number one “tag” question asked of homeschoolers?  “What about socialization?”  So, the internal batteries are nearly drained by mid-day, you still have to work with the kids, and do the house stuff, and then it’s expected that you’ll take them out to “socialize”?  GAH!

Co-ops can be a good middle ground for both types.  The extrovert gets their face time, the introvert gets rid of the social guilt, and the kids get educated.  (Of course, I had to drop the Monday co-op because it always takes me two days to recover from co-op. . .)

*ahem*

But, er, we were just talking about *you*.  And there are always at least two sides to everything.

So, are your children introverts or extroverts? 😉  There are middle of the road types too.  (I think actually, most of my guys fall there, which I am thankful for.)

Honestly, I hope you never thought homeschooling would be easy.  The sheer number of things that come into play before you even start. . .

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