Are introverts more or less stressed in the age of the internet?


I’m leaving on vacation tomorrow for over a week and nothing is planned. I’ve been working so much I haven’t had a chance to even think about where we are staying or what we are doing. So far I’ve made it as far as Dallas and I’m starting to look into hotels once I arrive in Europe. Before I leave the country tomorrow, all I know is that I need to call AT&T to turn on my data plan for my iPhone or I will be seriously crippled. I’ve been putting this task off for a while, despite its estimated two minute completion time.

My friend Scott, a fellow iPhone user and one of my traveling companions, just texted me the URL to activate my data plan after I had sent him the number and all the instructions to get set up. I can’t tell you how relieved I was not to have to call and have a two minute conversation with AT&T, despite the fact that they are usually very, very nice and helpful. I asked him (via text, of course) why I was so excited about this. He said “because you are an I”. It is true. I don’t particularly like talking to strangers. I really, really love that I can go click a button, even if it takes me a little longer.

It made me wonder if this internet world helps or hurts true introverts. I’m borderline, and I still absolutely love avoiding live people who I don’t already know. Except American Airlines; I always feel like they know me, maybe because they can reference all of my highs and lows for the last 15 years in Sabre. But seriously… if the true definition of an introvert is someone who gets his/her energy from within versus other people, how does that relate to online communications? For me (only a mild introvert), I love interacting via websites, email, text whenever possible with people I don’t know so well and that gives me energy to focus time in person with those who I do know well…