Finding Balance – Introverted Vs Extoverted Recharging

IMG_20171126_112613_835My idea of a restful weekend is being at home and not having to touch my car all weekend. I love to just enjoy the stress free feeling of having nowhere to go and nothing in particular to do. After a whole week of driving to and from work and attending to other business, driving is normally the last thing I want to do on a weekend.
I think your home should be your refuge and place to recuperate and find rest. I often find it strange when someone says I am bored at home because for me home is the ultimate place to be on a weekend. Nothing better to achieve this, for me, than spending some time in the kitchen cooking a nice meal whilst listening to some music.

I love big yards because they offer serenity. I can explore my own yard and find amazing plants and flowers, insects and birds. There is always something new to see if you are looking for it and are curious. Photography has helped me to appreciate my surroundings even more and to be curious.

Then a little choice and selective television to unwind and just explore. Nature shows and documentaries are my first choice, then perhaps a good movie. A science-fiction or thriller will do, thank you.

But I know that for some people that would be a very dull weekend full of drudgery and boredom. Some people’s idea of a good and restful weekend is driving around, hanging out with friends, having braais, socialising and all. Being home all weekend to them is like being imprisoned.
Nothing wrong with that, I have come to learn. People like me, who are naturally introverted, live internally. We find the greatest satisfaction from being able to get away from it all and just think and reflect. Solitude does not mean loneliness, but rather being alone. We recharge our batteries by finding peace and quiet.

Others, live externally. Social interaction is their form of recharging. When alone they feel lonely and not at peace. They crave excitement and novelty. They need constant interaction with people. Extroversion is like that.

This can be a real challenge in a relationship when one partner is like me, introverted, and the other is extroverted. Then it can be a real struggle to find balance. The extrovert might complain that their partner is boring and never wants to do anything. The introvert would say their partner is too demanding and always wanting to go out and have fun.

For the introvert, spending money on such activities they do not consider necessary nor fun can be an added stress. The extrovert may think their partner is stingy. But it is really just a matter of perspective.

What is important, is to understand one another’s personalities and work around that. Balance is key and both parties must be given the time to enjoy what they like. So sometimes a weekend home will do and another time some time out would be nice. Each has to compromise and do what is good for the other person.

It is amazing how long it took me to learn this. I used to think there was something wrong or weird about me. I remember as a teenager declining some family outings and preferring to be home alone to just relax. My parents no doubt were worried about my behaviour, which I find quite funny in retrospect.

But doing personality profiles like Myers Briggs has reassured me. Having an INTJ (Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, Judging) personality profile has put things in perspective and helped me to understand my behaviour better.

In my book Destiny On Purpose I talk about how important is to know yourself better by doing this and other personality profiles. It is one step closer to understanding your purpose in life. And one step closer to better relationships once you understand your strengths and weaknesses.

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Follow Your Passion & Be Remembered – Coco 2017

20171125_170906Today, the girls and I went to the cinema to watch the animated movie “Coco”. It is a hilarious and sometimes tear-jerking tale about a young boy named Miguel pursuing his dream of being a musician.

His family is however not so keen on him following his passion for music and would rather he carried on the family tradition of making shoes. But he is stubborn and persists despite the resistance, which leads him to an unexpected adventure.

Through a series of events, which I will not go into for fear of being a spoiler, he ends up on the other side of life and meets his family members who are dead, in the land of the dead. The intriguing thing about the death side of things is that people continue living there, so long as there is someone on the other side who remembers them. Once they are no longer remembered by those alive they die a second time and disappear from the land of the dead to no one knows where.

I found these two aspects of the movie intriguing – pursuing your passion and being remembered after death. I am big on recognising and following your talents and gifts, as Miguel does. In my book “Destiny On Purpose – Unleash Your Greatness in Five Simple Steps” I talk about how to find these talents and gifts and how to nurture and develop them. I also talk about how they are often the key to finding your purpose in life and achieving your destiny.

Even in the land of the dead, Miguel faces stiff resistance to pursuing his dream of singing. Until he actually just starts to sing and people see his passion, talent and his happiness in doing it.

Life is like that. People will often say you cannot do this and you cannot do that. Until you just go ahead and do it despite their discouragement. Then once you start succeeding and shining at what you love, they usually warm up to it and support you or encourage you.

But the thing is if you let their initial discouragement stop you, you will not get anywhere. And unfortunately it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy when they say, “we told you so”. Sad, but c’est la vie.

The lesson here is – you know yourself best and should pursue that which you are happiest pursuing. But you must be strong and persevere against the odds and discouragement.

The second aspect, being remembered in death, I could equally relate to. In Destiny On Purpose I dedicate a whole chapter to “legacy” and understanding what you want to be remembered for when all is said and done.

It is very true that we live on in the people that remember us and the lives we touch. Our possessions, material things and money are not normally what makes for a lasting and rich legacy. What matters is who we are as people and what those we leave behind remember about us.

Yes, money is important and is one form of legacy that I speak about in the book, but there is a lot more to a life well-lived than money. People who only leave behind money and nothing else in terms of relationships they had and enriched are rarely remembered for long.

So as I tried to hold back tears now and then, as am sure the girls did, I appreciated this movie for the meaning it had for me personally, and for the time I spent with my lovely daughters…because that is what it is all about, relationships.