8 Things Introverts Hate About The First Days Of School
The first days of school can be bad enough if you actually enjoy being around people. When you’re at your most comfortable in a room far away from the loud and obnoxious antics of classmates, however, this time can be almost unbearable. With today the first day of school for many of you, it set us to thinking about our introverted ways and how this time just didn’t work for us growing up. If you’re looking at the next 179 school days with dread, you’re probably not alone. But look at it this way: at least you’re getting the hardest part out of the way — not knowing what to expect.
For those who just don’t understand what the quiet kids in class are going through, it’s time to brush up with these 8 Things Introverts Hate About The First Days Of School. Show a little compassion, and on a side note, if you catch anyone bullying another student, confide in the authorities. (Or punch them in the mouth. Bullies respond to that as well. But you should probably speak to a teacher or principal, lest you become accused of bullying yourself.)
1. Early Mornings.
Babies need tons of sleep. Fourteen out of 24 hours in a day to be sleeping is not at all uncommon. It’s during this time that the mind forms into what it will ultimately become. Taking that as a starting point, we need less sleep as we get older and become more fully developed. Needless to say, you don’t just go from sleeping two-thirds of the day to averaging five hours per night in a short period of time. It’s a gradual process, and one that you’re currently in the middle of, which means that you still need around eight to 10 hours just to function properly, if you’re in high school or younger. Being up at 7 am, 6:30 am, or even earlier, just so you can get to school on time doesn’t work too well with this reality. It doesn’t matter if reading and learning excites you. At this stage, you probably hate the mornings with a passion. Introverts are no exception.
2. Getting Used To Traffic.
Sitting helplessly in the back of a car that’s stuck in traffic is pure misery. Not moving when you need to be is frustrating enough; but there’s also the few extra minutes that you have to dread what those first classes will be like. Will you get singled out by a school bully? Will you not realize the toilet paper hanging off your shoe until you’re standing in front of the whole class, thus setting the tone for the rest of the year? Lots can go wrong on the first day of school and having no idea what to expect is worse when you’re inching along in yours or your parents’ vehicle at 15 miles per hour. Furthermore, if you have a ride of your own, you’re in more danger of an accident due to all the cars you’re sharing the road with, and the fact that yours (and others) reflexes aren’t at maximum performance levels thanks to the sleep gunk still caked into each person’s eyes.
When you’re an introvert, you just want to know what is expected of you, so you can get to it and have less homework at the end of the day. As far as socialization is concerned, you live by one rule: no attention is good attention. But with icebreakers, you’re forced to do all the little things that introverts hate. Introduce yourself to another person. Share something about who you are and what your interests are. You have a short amount of time to comb through the details of your life and evaluate what others will find cool, separating it from the things that would surely get you called a freak if everyone knew. You have to worry about showing classmates the right kind of image, when the only image you want them to see is nothing at all.
Yet another thing introverts hate about the first day of school: their social polar opposites, extroverts. It’s incredibly tough dealing with a class full of extroverts when you don’t know their personalities, and you’ve yet to make friends. It’s not that you think they’re jerks and that you close yourself off to the possibility of friendship. It’s just that you’d rather be left alone, and here you have these people that make socializing with one another so natural. You feel like something is wrong with you because it’s so easy for them. Your first impression is that they just don’t understand you, and so there’s a possibility they’ll, at best, think you’re weird, or, at worst, hold you up to ridicule.
5. Getting Called On To Participate In Class.
Introverts dread nothing more than getting asked to participate in class. It’s just a no-win situation, especially in the first days of school. If you answer a question wrong, for example, then you fear people will think you’re an idiot. If you answer it right, then they’ll consider you a know-it-all or a nerd or they’ll hone in on how you answered the question rather than what you answered. Perhaps they’ll note that you don’t speak with confidence in front of others, and they’ll see in you a potential target for ridicule. Worse yet, depending on how you answer, you may bring more of the teacher’s attention on you throughout the rest of the school year, and that makes for not just a bad day, but a bad year.
6. Working In Groups.
An extension of numbers three and four on our list, working in groups is actually worse because your grade is essentially tied to other people, forcing you to communicate with individuals you may not know or like. With icebreakers, you are under the spotlight, but at least it’s for a very short period of time. When you’re working in a group, that spotlight can be sustained for the length of the class. Not good if at a time in life when your sweat glands are overactive and you’re wearing a gray T-shirt.
Minimal teacher supervision, a chance for your extroverted classmates to let their hair down, lunches consisting of square pizza, corn, and apple sauce. A lot can go wrong at lunchtime on the first day of school if you’re not comfortable being around people. If you sit with them and try to socialize, then you struggle to find something to say that’ll make you seem interesting. If you sit by yourself, then you might as well be under the world’s largest microscope. You just know your classmates are looking at you, thinking you’re weird, and judging you. So then you have to find potential lunch buddies, but that requires engagement of the extroverted side of your personality, and since that’s not you, it’s a struggle.
8. Realizing That You’ve Got To Do It All Again Tomorrow.
Any relief you feel from the realization that the first day of school is behind you soon fades when you realize you have to do it all again tomorrow. When you’re an introvert, that means you go home still thinking about school and all the things that could have (or did) go wrong, and how those things could/will be amplified when you head to school the next day. All those first impressions that you felt under heavy pressure to get right can be grim dictators of the year ahead if they didn’t go as expected. In short, introverts can feel like their year is determined by the successes or failures of day one, and that’s something most would rather not deal with than risk getting right.
You may be an extrovert or someone, who can fake it in social situations. It’s fine if the first days of school are easy for you. But remember that there is always someone in your class for whom it’s not that easy. People who’d rather be forgotten than ridiculed. If you want to do a lot of good, start the year off right by making them feel accepted. Be a friend, or at the very least a pleasant acquaintance. Make the year a great one for as many as you can, and you’ll have the best one yet.
[Image via Teachhub.com]