Skip to main content

I'm Not Your Type

Recently, I went to a restorative yoga class. I've wanted to go for a long time but never did because a) they cost money and at-home yoga is free and b) Sitting still is hard for me. I meditate for about 20 minutes; then, I'm done. I can hold a pose for about 5 breaths; then, I have to move. It's outside my comfort zone. But, I'm always preaching at myself to step outside my comfort zone, so I went. It was amazing, and I'm so glad I went, but this isn't about stepping outside your comfort zone.

Actually, this is about knowing that sometimes, it's okay to stay in it.

What? Hell, you say. Life BEGINS at the end of your comfort zone! Nothing great ever happened in a comfort zone! The magic happens when you step OUT of your comfort zone. I know. I've read the quotes. I believe them too. Sometimes.

On the other hand, I am very comfortable with a lot of things about myself: I don't run, spin, funnel beer, bungee jump, knit, do crossfit, drive go-carts, ski ... off the top of my head. I've tried some of those things and don't enjoy them. Others, I know without trying, will hold no joy for me. No thank you, I don't wanna. No amount of peer pressuring or encouraging or shaming will sway my resolve. I know myself. Please, by all means, run, spin, funnel beer, bungee jump, knit, do crossfit, drive go-carts, and ski until your hearts are content. Enjoy! I am thrilled not to be joining you.

This has come up many times for me, but most recently as I've been reading several books about personality types. I've written about this before because it fascinates me. My husband and kids have all been "typed," and I often encourage people I know to take the tests as well so I can know them better via their types.

As I was listening to Anne Bogel*'s new book Reading People, a point she made really resonated with me. For personality assessments to work, people need to answer honestly. Seems like a no-brainer. However, when some people take these tests, their answers reflect who they aspire to be rather than who they actually are. Makes sense, right? If you answer questions with the reaction you'd hope to have rather than the reaction you'd actually have, your result will indicate who you want to be instead of who you actually are.

Circling back to comfort zones and stepping out of and staying in them, sometimes, I'm too quick to try to stretch outside my comfort zone. I'm an INFJ and a highly sensitive person, so if I put myself in a position of having too much interaction or stimulation, I will be M I S E R A B L E. People rely on me and need me not to be miserable. One of those people, my Lily bear, is also highly sensitive person but a capital E extrovert. I'm sensitive to noises; she's sensitive to lines in her socks. I need quiet, she crawls out of her skin without noise. I prefer relaxing in the same room together reading separate books and not talking; she prefers watching and discussing reality tv while eating skittles and playing on our phones.

It's conflict in the making, but we manage to work it out. It can't always be loud and it can't always be quiet. Knowing yourself better allows you to make better choices to take care of your own sanity. Sometimes we watch tv; sometimes we read.

Such is life, and love, and family...choosing when to step out, when to stay in, and dealing with the consequences of our choice. Sticking with those that bring joy, and adjusting to make better ones the next time. Sometimes, it's super important to step outside your comfort zone. And sometimes the only thing you find outside of your comfort zone is discomfort. It's wonderful to want to improve yourself, but it's also wonderful to be okay with who you already are.

Everything in moderation...even moderation. -Oscar Wilde
If you love personality tests, please let me know! I would love to talk about it with you!


*Anne is Modern Mrs. Darcy and also hosts the wonderful podcast "What Should I Read Next?"


  1. Yes,honesty is essential to growth! Think I'll take a personality test. The older I get the quieter I like it. Something wonderful about hearing nothing. Thanks for sharing

    1. Thanks, mama! Please do. I would love to talk more about personality types.

  2. I tried to comment earlier on my phone (on two posts) but I think I messed it up. Anyway, "I am thrilled not to be joining you" is exactly how I feel about all adventurous things. And yes to allll the quiet. ISTJ here. I could totally read separate books in the same room with you. :-)


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Did I Love Him Enough?

I just started reading a new book. It's called Weight Loss for People Who Feel Too Much by Colette Baron-Reid, who I discovered on my current favorite podcast: This is Fifty With Sheri and Nancy. It is blowing my mind and showing me that some of the extra pounds I'm carrying don't even belong to me. Seriously. This is yours, this is his, this is hers, and oh wait, THAT? That belongs to a person who isn't even part of my life anymore! Great. Take your shit back.

More on that later. But, listen to the podcast. Seriously, you will love it!

Anyway, while in this super zen, grown-up, boundary-setting, higher self head space, I need to tackle an issue I've been avoiding for about 18 years but really strongly avoiding for the last 6 months. My son is growing up. He graduates from high school on Sunday, and in a few months, he's moving to Columbus to attend THE Ohio State University.

Can I tell you a secret? I used to LOVE everything about THE Ohio State University, bu…

Why Didn't I Report It?

When I was 17, I went with friends to a party at a boy's house from another school. I drank too much and passed out. I don't remember much about the incident, but I woke up with my friend screaming at a boy, pulling me up and dragging me to the car. She told me that she came looking for me and found me passed out. The boy had his penis in my face. I don't remember it. Thankfully.

I never told my parents who would have said, "How stupid could you be? You shouldn't have put yourself in that position." They would not have said, "No one should put his penis in your face without your consent."

A few months ago, I saw a picture of that boy on social media. He's a man now. With a beautiful family. He probably doesn't remember that night. I wondered: What might have happened if my friend didn't walk in and tell him to get his dick out of my face? Were there were other girls whose friends didn't come looking for them? Did they ever tell anyone…

Red Lipstick and Leopard Shoes

A month or so ago my friend and LOBL partner Melissa shared about a few of her favorite things. I loved this post because:
 1) The Sound of Music is one of my all-time favorite movies.
 2) Thinking about your favorite things is a huge mood booster.

In counseling, my therapist walked me through exercises to find a safe calm place inside my mind to go when feeling overwhelmed. The goal is to find peace, comfort, belonging, acceptance, worthiness, etc. within us so we don't need to chase it down from others. I always go to my favorite place: a beautiful little island near Key Largo we visit with our best friends. The first time we went was a magical experience: Dolphins played around the boat splashing in the aquamarine water, and I squealed, "This can't be real!" I tried to capture every single detail so I could go back there in my mind over and over. Any time someone asks me where I want to go, it's here. Always here.

I often write about these things, my favorite…