I hate to say it and know I shouldn't be thinking this way but I'm feeling ashamed to be an ISTP. Somehow I grew up thinking I needed to be more outgoing and vivacious, like the people I looked up to growing up. I got into business and eventually sales and had to hide my introversion. I'm better in 1:1 situations with customers who I truly can help but when I'm around other Sales people, the classic type-As, I quickly run out of energy and withdraw. I can hang with them for 1 day of meetings and 1 night of drinks, say at multi-day sales meetings/training, but then I'm drained the next day and they can keep up this pace for 2-3 more days. While I've become good at keeping my secret, some have noticed, "why didn't I see you out late last night when we closed the bar down? Ya know socializing is important. What's wrong with you?" Another comment I've heard since I was a kid, "Are you always this quiet?" and I just want to disappear. I try but the words just don't come freely and I've always felt something is wrong with my brain. I know I'm smart but why can it be so hard to socialize in a group of simple chatter and story telling? Now, I'm in my mid-40s and feel I've been living a bit of a lie and feeling ashamed for who I naturally am. I know I should have embraced myself long ago and put myself in a situation where I would thrive rather than hide myself. It is good to know more about my personality type and that there are others out there like me -- probably some also in similar predicaments.
I need help embracing my personality and ditching these shameful feelings. Any suggestions?