Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

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Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

I am an extrovert. I am deeply attached to the several dozen friends I have. I never get tired of socializing. I don't need alone time afterwards. I've never had a problem with being shy, nor do I even understand what shy people are so afraid of. When I take a Myers-Briggs test, I come out as ENFP. I agree with Anne Morrow Lindbergh's quote that "Good communication is as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after". I've never even had stage fright, and love to perform in front of audiences. And after I attended my 20-year high school reunion in 2019, I had a hard time sleeping that night.

I realize that this puts me in a distinct minority among conworlders and conlangers. If I had a dollar for every person I encountered on the CBB or ZBB who described him- or herself as shy, or had social anxiety, or, as Space Dracula put it, are "more at home with books than with people", I'd have enough money to bribe Donald Trump not to run again in 2024. Even the people who aren't outright shy in the online con-community are generally introverted, in the sense that they expend rather than gain energy from socializing. And my high school reunion? Elemtilas said: "Hm. I have no interest whatever in attending any kind of school reunion." From Man in Space, who identified himself as "Nerd, geek, metalhead, introvert" on the Conlanger stereotype poll, to Jaaaaaa, who described himself as "the king of all introverts", conworlders celebrate their introversion.

My Quora feed gets lots of psychological questions, including questions on extroversion vs. introversion. Recently I got an A2A in my Quora digest titled "Why do introverts tend to understand an extrovert's need to socialize but extroverts tend to not understand an introvert's need for alone time?" The answer was written by one Emma Pennington, which linked to an article at https://introvertdear.com/news/introver ... o-science/

This article explains about how the two types of -verts register dopamine -- the hedonistic pleasure and speed chemical -- differently. Dopamine, as the article states, "gives us immediate, intense zaps of happiness". Extroverts are less sensitive to dopamine than introverts, who fill up on dopamine rather quickly. We extroverts just keep craving more, more, more dopamine. As a result, we love novel experiences and "extreme" things.

This dopamine-chasing is reflected in my achievement ethic with conworlding and conlanging. After I've completed a long article on something in the Lehola Galaxy, or created 200 Kankonian words in a single night, or finished off designing the plants and animals for a particular planet within the Lehola Galaxy, I feel a powerful high of achievement. I want to keep doing "more, more, more" even when I've finished my quota of work that night, and then have trouble sleeping. It's like a heroin rush, or the type of "hubris" that Howe & Strauss claim Hero generations like the Greatest Generation have during a "High" like the 1950's -- I feel like an unstoppable powerhouse, like Hercules or Gilgamesh.

On Monday night, I drank two Frappuccinos and phoned two friends, as well as dialing the phone numbers of four other people for whom I just got some answering machine messages. Then I went and drew dozens of alkhai, nuistros, and nectarozoans from the black plant bioswath of planets like Pluos and Querre. While I was in the middle of it, I got a pain in my right eye -- one of my tension headaches -- so I took my headache medication and rested with the light off. As soon as the headache disappeared, I went back to work. I finished that night; I cheered, and celebrated by playing some music.

I had always imagined other conworlders had the same power rush that I did, and conworlding and conlanging was like sugar to them -- or, to use a Lehola analogy, like corticosterine to the Greys of Bt!a. I thought they chased dopamine from achievements. But, considering I just learned I'm like that because I'm an extrovert, this seems unlikely to be true in such an introvert-dominated passion. To the introverts here: How do you feel when you make some big-time accomplishment in conworlding? To the other extroverts: Can you relate to the feelings I describe? And a question for everyone who has an answer: Is the overwhelming dominance of introverts in conworlding the reason we don't see more 150-page conlang grammars or 73,000-word lexica?
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by LinguistCat »

I don't think this is quite accurate.

I know anecdotes don't translate to data, but in my own experience, I'm a chaser of novel situations, foods, locations, etc, but I'm also extremely introverted. I love people that I am close to, and in the moment speaking with a small group or one on one about interesting topics makes my heart sing. I'm even fine at big parties or things like raves, as long as I'm not expected to talk much. But I abhor small talk or "talking just to talk". I hate going over the same points again and again unless it's something with a lot of nuance. I love accomplishing things and if anything, part of my experiences with depression come from feeling I'm not accomplishing as much as I'd like. I'd love nothing more than to travel, either alone or with one or two people I trust. But my enjoyment would be about equal traveling to distant locations out in nature as it would be exploring a new city.

I'm not sure where the idea that introverts are more sensitive to dopamine comes from, or if there are actual studies, or if this is a hypothesis set forward without testing. If anything, I get far more of a rush from personal achievements or learning new things (however I might do so) than I do from talking with others in general. I'd think it's not the sensitivity to dopamine, but how and how much of the dopamine is produced. But that is only my own hypothesis on the matter.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by eldin raigmore »

I don’t even like being in earshot of two people who are talking to each other just to talk.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

LinguistCat wrote: 30 Jul 2021 20:19 I don't think this is quite accurate.

I know anecdotes don't translate to data, but in my own experience, I'm a chaser of novel situations, foods, locations, etc, but I'm also extremely introverted. I love people that I am close to, and in the moment speaking with a small group or one on one about interesting topics makes my heart sing. I'm even fine at big parties or things like raves, as long as I'm not expected to talk much. But I abhor small talk or "talking just to talk". I hate going over the same points again and again unless it's something with a lot of nuance. I love accomplishing things and if anything, part of my experiences with depression come from feeling I'm not accomplishing as much as I'd like. I'd love nothing more than to travel, either alone or with one or two people I trust. But my enjoyment would be about equal traveling to distant locations out in nature as it would be exploring a new city.

I'm not sure where the idea that introverts are more sensitive to dopamine comes from, or if there are actual studies, or if this is a hypothesis set forward without testing. If anything, I get far more of a rush from personal achievements or learning new things (however I might do so) than I do from talking with others in general. I'd think it's not the sensitivity to dopamine, but how and how much of the dopamine is produced. But that is only my own hypothesis on the matter.
If you're interested in the science, the article links to this book:

The Introvert Advantage

My friend who was writing The Bittersweet Generation with me, the late John Hensle, is an introvert, and he was eulogized as "always ready for life's next adventure". But then again, he did spend a lot of time exploring nature (he even deceptively changed his location on his Facebook profile to Gimli, Manitoba!) One time John deleted his Facebook account, and when I emailed him, he told me there were too many people he wasn't interested in socializing with who had friended him on Facebook. (He assured me that I, however, was not one of said people.)

Also, you said you get a rush from personal achievements. Do these include major achievements and milestones in your conlanging/conworlding journey?
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by LinguistCat »

Khemehekis wrote: 30 Jul 2021 22:11 If you're interested in the science, the article links to this book:

The Introvert Advantage
I'll take a look when I can get my Kindle set up :)
... Also, you said you get a rush from personal achievements. Do these include major achievements and milestones in your conlanging/conworlding journey?
I'm best motivated when I motivate myself, so getting things I've wanted to do on my conlanging and conworlding are definitely things I enjoy. Likewise with goals I've set up myself that others might think of as minor or not so important.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Reyzadren »

Extrovert.

Yes, I'm not shy and I don't have anxiety. No, I have no desire to attend them because school reunions are non-canon. Friends hangouts? Sure, but I most likely won't because I can't afford it. In fact, I don't think I've spoken to anyone proper in years. Perception is not reality.

Also, I like achievements, but I don't think this E/I relates to conlanging/conworlding at all. For example, my conlang grammar doesn't exceed 2 pages, and it prefers to have a low word count itself. I prefer simplicity, efficiency, generality and utility, whereas most in the fandom seem to prefer complexity, perfection, specificity and aesthetics.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

Reyzadren wrote: 31 Jul 2021 00:11 Extrovert.
Good to know I'm not the only one here. [:D]
No, I have no desire to attend them because school reunions are non-canon.
What do you mean by "non-canon" here?
Also, I like achievements, but I don't think this E/I relates to conlanging/conworlding at all. For example, my conlang grammar doesn't exceed 2 pages, and it prefers to have a low word count itself. I prefer simplicity, efficiency, generality and utility, whereas most in the fandom seem to prefer complexity, perfection, specificity and aesthetics.
Well, the connection I saw was in the psychologists concluding that we extroverts were dopamine junkies. My dopamine junkieism is tied into my conworlding/conlanging achievements (among other things), so I wondered whether introverts like eldin raigmore didn't get the same high I did.

3,000 words may seem low compared to langs like Géarthnuns, Arka, Itlani, or Kankonian. However, even though most of the big-name celebrated Internet-based conlangs -- Teonaht, Verdurian, Brithenig, Siɥa, Okuna, Itlani, Wenedyk, etc. -- have at least 1,500 words, the vast majority of conlangs ever created are conlangs created and ditched by scrappers; if they're lucky there will be a lexicon size of 50 when the conlang is scrapped. 3,000 words sounds like a typical size for a conlang whose creator has stayed with it for years and years, but when you look at the average size of conlangs as a whole, the balance is tipped by all the forgotten scraplangs out there.

And yes, I too have noticed that most conlangers seem to prefer complexity and "kinks" in conlangs, and a lot (though it seems more on the ZBB than the CBB) are very aesthetic-driven, and want their conlangs to look and/or sound "beautiful", or "melodic", or "like Quenya".
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Reyzadren »

Khemehekis wrote: 31 Jul 2021 01:54
No, I have no desire to attend them because school reunions are non-canon.
What do you mean by "non-canon" here?
Also, I like achievements, but I don't think this E/I relates to conlanging/conworlding at all. For example, my conlang grammar doesn't exceed 2 pages, and it prefers to have a low word count itself. I prefer simplicity, efficiency, generality and utility, whereas most in the fandom seem to prefer complexity, perfection, specificity and aesthetics.
Well, the connection I saw was in the psychologists concluding that we extroverts were dopamine junkies. My dopamine junkieism is tied into my conworlding/conlanging achievements (among other things), so I wondered whether introverts like eldin raigmore didn't get the same high I did.

3,000 words may seem low compared to langs like Géarthnuns, Arka, Itlani, or Kankonian. However, even though most of the big-name celebrated Internet-based conlangs -- Teonaht, Verdurian, Brithenig, Siɥa, Okuna, Itlani, Wenedyk, etc. -- have at least 1,500 words, the vast majority of conlangs ever created are conlangs created and ditched by scrappers; if they're lucky there will be a lexicon size of 50 when the conlang is scrapped. 3,000 words sounds like a typical size for a conlang whose creator has stayed with it for years and years, but when you look at the average size of conlangs as a whole, the balance is tipped by all the forgotten scraplangs out there.
Non-canon = things that I did not consciously voluntarily decide.
No comments on dopamine, could be true or not.

4000 word entries now, *sigh* oh well. Fine within typical range.
Still stands ic though.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

Reyzadren wrote: 02 Aug 2021 00:21 Non-canon = things that I did not consciously voluntarily decide.
I've never heard anyone else using that word that way. So when you say you won't reveal your ethnicity or the other L1 (besides English) that you speak because "I don't talk about non-canon things", you mean you don't talk about those things because those weren't personal choices you made?
4000 word entries now, *sigh* oh well. Fine within typical range.
Still stands ic though.
ic = in context?

And if you like simplicity instead of complexity in conlangs, you might be interested in Larryrl's work. Here he says: "That's why I love the auxlang Esperanto. All regular verbs, and only 16 rules of grammer [sic]."
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Reyzadren »

Khemehekis wrote: 03 Aug 2021 00:00
Reyzadren wrote: 02 Aug 2021 00:21 Non-canon = things that I did not consciously voluntarily decide.
I've never heard anyone else using that word that way. So when you say you won't reveal your ethnicity or the other L1 (besides English) that you speak because "I don't talk about non-canon things", you mean you don't talk about those things because those weren't personal choices you made?
4000 word entries now, *sigh* oh well. Fine within typical range.
Still stands ic though.
ic = in context?

And if you like simplicity instead of complexity in conlangs, you might be interested in Larryrl's work. Here he says: "That's why I love the auxlang Esperanto. All regular verbs, and only 16 rules of grammer [sic]."
Yes, but they are not a secret/private.
ic = in-character/in-conworld, albeit inflated numbers.

No. Esperanto is pathetically far more difficult than my fictional conlang. (too lengthy to discuss, cba here. 16 rules /'mai 'a:s/)
Anyway, to be back on topic, it seems that your link verifies what we observe. Members here seem to hate that auxlang because it isn't complex enough, however I hate it because it is not simple enough.
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Post by elemtilas »

Anyway, to be back on topic, it seems that your link verifies what we observe. Members here seem to hate that auxlang because it isn't complex enough, however I hate it because it is not simple enough.
And some of don't hate it at all!

Or maybe just one of us after all...
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by elemtilas »

Khemehekis wrote: To the introverts here: How do you feel when you make some big-time accomplishment in conworlding?
To answer your question, leastways for me, I don't really feel anything. If anything, I suppose it could be said that I "rest content with the work, though never quite satisfied with the result". There's always something to edit, something to entirely rewrite, something new to write about. One project is coming close to being finished, like for real finished, so if I experience any particular emotion about it, I'll be sure to let you know.

As for the bit about introverts being able to understand the extrovert's need to socialise, I'd have to say nay, nay and thrice over nay. I for one don't understand it at all. You probably telephoned more friends in that single night than I have in my entire life. That's just something that is entirely out of my experience.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

Reyzadren wrote: 05 Aug 2021 01:07 ic = in-character/in-conworld, albeit inflated numbers.
Oh. I C (I see).
Reyzadren wrote: 05 Aug 2021 01:07 No. Esperanto is pathetically far more difficult than my fictional conlang. (too lengthy to discuss, cba here. 16 rules /'mai 'a:s/)
I agree with you. Like, where in the 16 Rules does it cover how to say "I painted my nails blue" or "I consider Nick stupid"?
Anyway, to be back on topic, it seems that your link verifies what we observe. Members here seem to hate that auxlang because it isn't complex enough, however I hate it because it is not simple enough.
You're right, the people here do tend to hate on Esperanto (and Toki Pona as well, another notoriously simplified conlang).
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

elemtilas wrote: 05 Aug 2021 02:12
Anyway, to be back on topic, it seems that your link verifies what we observe. Members here seem to hate that auxlang because it isn't complex enough, however I hate it because it is not simple enough.
And some of don't hate it at all!

Or maybe just one of us after all...
I don't hate Esperanto, however, some people (generally of the n00blanger sort) think its biggest downfall is its accusative -n, whereas I would say Esperanto's biggest downfall is its male-as-default sexism.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

elemtilas wrote: 05 Aug 2021 02:31
Khemehekis wrote: To the introverts here: How do you feel when you make some big-time accomplishment in conworlding?
To answer your question, leastways for me, I don't really feel anything. If anything, I suppose it could be said that I "rest content with the work, though never quite satisfied with the result". There's always something to edit, something to entirely rewrite, something new to write about. One project is coming close to being finished, like for real finished, so if I experience any particular emotion about it, I'll be sure to let you know.
Wow! Well, keep me posted.
As for the bit about introverts being able to understand the extrovert's need to socialise, I'd have to say nay, nay and thrice over nay. I for one don't understand it at all. You probably telephoned more friends in that single night than I have in my entire life. That's just something that is entirely out of my experience.
That's even more introverted than I pictured you! You do have some friends, though, right -- you just don't phone them? Do you have friends you know in person whom you speak with online (the way I met my friends Lamesha, Oneika, and Ellen in person and now talk with them on Facebook)?
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by elemtilas »

Khemehekis wrote: 05 Aug 2021 04:58 I don't hate Esperanto, however, some people (generally of the n00blanger sort) think its biggest downfall is its accusative -n, whereas I would say Esperanto's biggest downfall is its male-as-default sexism.
Curious.

While I am extremely hesitant to throw around accusative terms like that, having been on the receiving end from "friends", I do agree with you that this is a strange and curious pitfall. I haven't studied the history of the language or the character of Dr. Z to make such a determination. It could simply be some phenomenon of the concept of "planlingvo" that makes it that way rather than any particular hatred of the feminine.

What I find curious is that E-o is touted as this wonderful "culture neutral" language while at the same time, Z imposes this most curious and most inhuman of cultural traits right there in the middle of the language. Every culture on Earth not only understands but many appropriately raise up the centrality of the feminine in her role as mother. Except for early E-o culture! It's so bizarre, though to be fair they have borrowed "matro" from Ido in an attempt to set things right.

I never found the accusative -n to be a bother.
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Khemehekis wrote: 05 Aug 2021 05:02 That's even more introverted than I pictured you!
Surprise?
You do have some friends, though, right -- you just don't phone them? Do you have friends you know in person whom you speak with online (the way I met my friends Lamesha, Oneika, and Ellen in person and now talk with them on Facebook)?
Yes. I never got on with telephones and don't use big social media. Being with those friends is much better!
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by KaiTheHomoSapien »

I have always described myself as an introvert, but I realize that I'm not quite as "hardcore" as many introverts online. For example, most introverts I know hate parties. I actually love parties, especially if I'm with a group of friends. It's true that I may start out quiet but I become more social and talkative as the party goes on to the point where I eventually feel I can talk to anybody there (alcohol often plays a role, but I don't need to be drunk to enjoy a decent-sized social gathering). I also love going to restaurants, even crowded ones, and do not shy away from bustling cities, concerts, or other events. But I know I'm an introvert because I can only do things like this infrequently. Too much socializing and I need a break, I need some alone time, I need to sit down with a book for a while or get back to conlanging/conworlding.

I absolutely understand the "rush" you describe. I guess I just achieve it with more difficulty. Conlanging for me can be quite laborious and it often causes me to become frustrated and dissatisfied with what I've produced. That said, when I do accomplish something worthwhile and something I'm very satisfied with (the same thing applies to my novel-writing), I become almost ecstatic. Even better is when I get to share it with others and have them appreciate it as well (granted that happens more often with my creative writing than with my conlanging/conworlding, but still).
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

elemtilas wrote: 05 Aug 2021 15:37 What I find curious is that E-o is touted as this wonderful "culture neutral" language while at the same time, Z imposes this most curious and most inhuman of cultural traits right there in the middle of the language. Every culture on Earth not only understands but many appropriately raise up the centrality of the feminine in her role as mother. Except for early E-o culture! It's so bizarre, though to be fair they have borrowed "matro" from Ido in an attempt to set things right.
Well, I agree with you on that. Taking the word for "father" and creating the word for "mother", not with an M, but by adding a feminizing suffix, seems . . . . non-human. I could almost say "unnaturalistic". (Though as soon as I said it, I expect someone to shock me with an ANADEW -- some natlang that has a word like "fatheress".)
I never found the accusative -n to be a bother.
[+1]

That seems to be mostly an English-as-L1 complaint.
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Re: Extroverts, introverts, dopamine, and conworlding

Post by Khemehekis »

elemtilas wrote: 05 Aug 2021 15:42
Khemehekis wrote: 05 Aug 2021 05:02 That's even more introverted than I pictured you!
Surprise?
I'm still a bit surprised, even though I've seen some people say INFP is the most introverted of all 16 types. (Others have ascribed that distinction to INTP, however.)
You do have some friends, though, right -- you just don't phone them? Do you have friends you know in person whom you speak with online (the way I met my friends Lamesha, Oneika, and Ellen in person and now talk with them on Facebook)?
Yes. I never got on with telephones and don't use big social media. Being with those friends is much better!
I always tell Lamesha, Oneika, and Ellen when I'm on Facebook with them that I miss seeing them in person! That's the best -- but I'm not averse to phoning a friend.
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