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OneSizeFitzpatrick
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 4:56 pm
Posts: 686
Location: A smoldering ruin with wi-fi, Chechnya
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 12:35 pm 
 

I've been doing alot of research on psychological stuff for college in the last semester and this idea just popped into my head. I'm not sure if it's just me, but it seems like alotta metal heads I've ran into could be described as being sorta "shy" or socially anxious/ introverted. Personally, I've had problems with social anxiety for most of my life, it's never been anything too crippling that it's affected my life adversely (to an extent) but I definitely prefer to be alone over around a ton of people I barely know.
Can anyone else back up this claim and if so, any possible reasons as to why this might be or is introversion just way more common than studies and research would have us believe. Or am I just full of shit? I'm on the fence myself, I need input.
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ChaosGoatKills
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:38 pm
Posts: 84
Location: Los Osos, California
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:12 pm 
 

OneSizeFitzpatrick wrote:
I've been doing alot of research on psychological stuff for college in the last semester and this idea just popped into my head. I'm not sure if it's just me, but it seems like alotta metal heads I've ran into could be described as being sorta "shy" or socially anxious/ introverted. Personally, I've had problems with social anxiety for most of my life, it's never been anything too crippling that it's affected my life adversely (to an extent) but I definitely prefer to be alone over around a ton of people I barely know.
Can anyone else back up this claim and if so, any possible reasons as to why this might be or is introversion just way more common than studies and research would have us believe. Or am I just full of shit? I'm on the fence myself, I need input.

I'm a sort of weird case personally. I go through times of intense extroversion, where I go out and socialize nightly, and don't really give a fuck what other people think of me. I often times stay out all night and while a bit of my day time energy suffers, its really fun. Conversely, I hit points of extreme introversion paired with crippling social anxiety and a little bit of depression. I have to force myself to go out and socialize, because I know its good for me, but I often times get really overwhelmed when I do. I may have some sort of mood disorder, but I haven't been psychologically evaluated since mid-high school and those tests came out close to normal. Maybe its time for another evaluation.

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Filosofuck
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:19 am
Posts: 75
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:27 pm 
 

ChaosGoatKills wrote:
OneSizeFitzpatrick wrote:
I've been doing alot of research on psychological stuff for college in the last semester and this idea just popped into my head. I'm not sure if it's just me, but it seems like alotta metal heads I've ran into could be described as being sorta "shy" or socially anxious/ introverted.

You just realized this? I thought it was common knowledge.
Anyway, metal isn't so popular these days, so it makes sense that people with a fair amount of distance from the "average" person would be more likely to listen to it. Of course, by "average", I only mean people who are more socially comfortable, than perhaps, many metalheads. This probably makes them more likely to influence each other's preferences, particularly towards more typical, commercially successful styles of music.

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EloyXO
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2013 11:07 am
Posts: 18
Location: Spain
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:53 pm 
 

I'm shy, introverted, lonely, depressive and oversensitive. I usually feel social anxiety, so Metal (and also literature, that's my other passion) is like an scape from people and society, in my case. Time has made me learn to be okay with my life.
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Nochielo
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 29, 2008 8:20 am
Posts: 1480
Location: Puerto Rico
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:55 pm 
 

I've noticed that there is a correlation between the two, but I hypothesize that introverts become metalheads and not the other way around. Outcasts gravitate to metal naturally. I guess being marginalized and seen as "different" makes them believe they are, and so look at ways to separate themselves from the "normal" people. Metalheads embrace outcasts because the group is mostly constituted by outcasts. But I know shit about psychology or social sciences so it's all guesswork.
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HellishHound
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:37 am
Posts: 370
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:57 pm 
 

I do have anxiety/social anxiety problems, though they are close to non-existent since I started smoking grass on a regular basis. People can say what they want to it but it helped/helps my mental state tremendously. However I don't know if social anxiety is more prevalent amongst metalheads though it definitely seems that way. Might have something to do with the whole outcast theme presented in many bands lyrics.
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megalowho
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 4:33 am
Posts: 479
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 1:59 pm 
 

There seems to be some reason for positively correlating "troublesome and troubling behaviors" (including depression and alienation) with the preference for metal music. How strong the correlation is, I don't know. (The linked article references some studies I didn't look at.)

That isn't to say introversion is "troublesome or troubling", though I suspect (in my culture, anyway) introversion is a predictor for things that are - e.g. loneliness, alienation, depression, and (as you referred to) social anxiety. (I'm a pretty extreme introvert myself, and in spite of the few solid friendships I have, I tend to feel misunderstood and out-of-place in my larger culture, which has a reputation for rewarding the loud, showy, and superficial. I'm moderately depressive and anxious by nature, too, but it's easy to see how these traits can be exacerbated by recurring difficulties in one's social life.)

So, however loose it is, it wouldn't seem entirely invalid to reason as follows (although the truth or falsity of the premises might vary from culture to culture): Metal attracts an unusually great amount of people who experience depression and alienation. Introversion is a predictor of depression and alienation. So, other things being equal, metal probably attracts an unusually great amount of introverts. (I'm not completely confident in this argument.)

Also, I recall reading in a couple places that metalheads tend to be more intelligent and creative; these are traits I'm also tempted to associate with introversion, alienation, etc., if only slightly - the "life of the mind", the "misunderstood artist", etc. - though I may be guilty of stereotyping here. (There were some threads about these findings quite a while ago, and the responses here were mixed, as I recall; some cautioned against a (self-serving!) eagerness to accept anything prematurely.)

In short, I think you're probably right to suspect a connection, though how strong it is, I can't say. Apart from the article linked to above, I don't have much to offer in the way of helping with your research, besides anecdotal evidence.

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somefella
Veteran

Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:57 pm
Posts: 2510
Location: Singapore
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 2:08 pm 
 

No idea why you'd see such a connection. For many I know, metal kinda forces you to be social, because as a little kid in Singapore liking metal, there was no way for you to figure out how to get more of it unless you walked up to complete strangers wearing bandshirts and asking where to buy them.
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CF_Mono
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:21 pm
Posts: 1391
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 2:43 pm 
 

I was like that when I was a dweeb in high school. Then again I went to a pretty poor and, umm, uncivil high school to put it politely. I suppose I prefer being with a few good friends than a bunch of strangers or acquaintances, but I don't have a problem actually being social at all. I like introducing myself to people and making new friends and all that, and I can usually communicate my feelings with someone without feeling embarrassed. But sure, I could see how metalheads might get labeled as anti-social. People with strong passions tend to like other people with strong passions, so we can be kinda exclusive at times. Some people are just better at breaking out of that than others.
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VoidApostle
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2012 8:00 pm
Posts: 190
Location: Within The Vacuum of Infinity
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 3:07 pm 
 

As someone with severe, gets-in-the-way-of-everyday-life social anxiety, I really don't see a connection. Except in high school when I listened to a lot of the music I did as a way of separating myself from my peers, but that was just me being a pretentious prick more than anything...

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Grave_Wyrm
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:55 pm
Posts: 2043
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 3:10 pm 
 

I don't see the two being particularly connected because taking either away doesn't change the existence of the other. There are extroverts who like metal, there are introverts who don't like metal. Making an anxious introvert metalhead more socially confident wouldn't necessarily weaken his/her enjoyment of metal. And getting an extrovert to like metal more wouldn't make them more withdrawn. [That is to say that taste in music may overlap with disposition, but neither is determinative.] Is this for a project, or just curiosity?

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mcmufffins
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2010 1:30 am
Posts: 217
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 7:26 pm 
 

I'm rather shy and fairly sure I'm depressed. Alcohol cures the former, and I'm thinking about a doctor for the latter.
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MalignantTyrant
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2011 3:27 pm
Posts: 1152
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 8:45 pm 
 

I'm not socially anxious at all, but I am pretty introverted because, most of the time, regular conversation bores me to tears and, not to sound like an asshole but most everyone I interact with on a daily basis are boring fucking people, not just to talk to but just in general lol. And if they aren't boring then they're incredibly stupid, or both...
I'm not really much of a partier, either
I'd say that I'm more like a slightly friendlier, less insulting version of Dr. House minus the drug addition lol
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TheLiberation
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:56 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Poland
PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 8:47 pm 
 

I'm definitely an example of this, although I've had the impression I'm not a "usual" metalhead (whatever that means)... At least most metalheads I've encountered seemed far more open and straightforward.
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severzhavnost
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 10:16 pm
Posts: 723
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 1:38 am 
 

somefella wrote:
No idea why you'd see such a connection. For many I know, metal kinda forces you to be social, because as a little kid in Singapore liking metal, there was no way for you to figure out how to get more of it unless you walked up to complete strangers wearing bandshirts and asking where to buy them.


Never been to Singapore, but I'd say this effect is generally true. Being a "visible" member of the metal community, like wearing a band shirt, is kind of an instant conversation starter. Someone is going to ask "hey what is this?" if they're not a fan. And if they are, you'll start talking about music. Of course in the first case it can be isolating if you really think about whether you're being pigeonholed.

Then there's the unexpected socialising side-effect of metal's unpopularity. Even if you're socially introverted, you can buy a balcony seat to a Britney Spears show in a 20,000 seat arena, and not really feel overwhelmed. But if you want to see Melechesh, you know you'll be squeezed into a tiny-ass bar with maybe 300strangers, who will be shoving all around you, maybe even pushing you in! So in some ways it helps to be crowd-tolerant if you want to be a metalhead.

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Varth
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:18 pm
Posts: 117
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 2:27 pm 
 

I'm an introvert in the sense that I think most people are dumb and most conversations are a dead end. I like to avoid crowds but I'm not intimidated by them, just bored and depressed by the waste of time and humanity milling about aimlessly with little purpose. At this point I can be extremely aggressive and vocal in public, people just usually piss me off and I feel like a bit of a loner despite having many acquaintances and close friends. My mind is always someplace else during interactions. I used to be cripplingly shy in my teens to the point where it has fucked up a big portion of my life but I was luckily forced into the real world and had to get over it or turn into a pathetic shut in on welfare.

Despite my own delusions about my metal superiority, I find most people into music or playing music a bit of the same cloth, and most people into metal a few steps away from being fucking crazy wingnuts. Levels of intro and extrovertness may vary.

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xThe__Wizard
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:59 pm
Posts: 845
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 2:53 pm 
 

Varth wrote:
I'm an introvert in the sense that I think most people are dumb and most conversations are a dead end. I like to avoid crowds but I'm not intimidated by them, just bored and depressed by the waste of time and humanity milling about aimlessly with little purpose.


I don't think not liking other people cause you think they are dumb makes you an introvert but I feel you on the crowd thing. I dislike parties because I like hanging around smaller groups but it doesn't bother me. But I can go to a bar and mingle.
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Hate the Morning
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 4:32 am
Posts: 6
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 3:06 pm 
 

On the note of social-issues: why is it necessarily a bad thing to want to avoid large numbers of people? Why is being 'shy' considered bad? A problem to be fixed? Why isn't being a social butterfly and unwilling to have 'time to ones self with quiet privacy' a bad thing on a large scale? It's simply this: Certain societies decided it was a bad thing - for reasons now long since considered archaic and primitive.

In reality: being amid large numbers of people, reliant on others, and forced into social situations routinely has presented humans with significant risks.
Disease is spread more readily amid densely populated areas. (Thus - concepts such as sanitation and inoculations are essential to avoid Cholera and Tuberculosis respectively.)
Famine affects large populations more than smaller ones because it takes larger quantities of unspoiled goods to feed such.
Exposure to violent crimes is less likely amid a smaller population as well.

On the flip-side - associating with large groups of people have some positives:
Increased support during aforementioned crisis. (Drs are more available, communities can band together and work to overcome drought, etc)
A faster growth of knowledge because it's easier to spread new information (although invention is driven by necessity - which has rooted itself in rural and populated settings).

The opposite of me: having no real-life (deep) friends at all and instead maintaining the minimal ring of associations to traverse the school system (for myself and my children)

When I think of 'being a social butterfly' I sort of struggle to define what that even is. I imagine maintaining a large number of real-life friends, attending various events and doing activities with them. My sister is in fact like this - and she has no real 'friends' and seems starved for real, deep discussion. Thus - she's always calling me for serious issues. I, on the other hand, have no problem seeking out adequate mental stimulation - the internet works great for me. I don't need large numbers of shoulder-rubbing people to do this.

In fact, my life is much less stressed when it comes to that. In the past - real-life friends presented dire complications, constant issues, and were nothing but a headache. They had to be factored into my weekly plans, contacted routinely as to not hurt their feelings - etc. Honestly - when a few serious problems came up because of friendships I realized there was nothing in it worth pursuing. I severed ties and burned all bridges. My time is now focused on things that are important to me and essential in life.

All in all - what one needs in life is whatever satisfies their inner-workings - that's what comfort really is - and that might just take a dose of self acceptance and realizing that not being friends with socialites and not attending a string of community events doesn't mean you're broken in some sense. I do not need the mess of demanding friendships to do this for myself (yet for others - friendships are satisfying and not a chore).

I have my priorities in life and none of it revolves around feeling 'comfortable' in a group of 500 people or being 'okay' walking up to a complete stranger and having a conversation about my preferred reading material. I can pretend to be, though - as is what most people do in life: they find a way to manage and cope even when they'd much rather be doing anything else.

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Hate the Morning
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 4:32 am
Posts: 6
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 3:07 pm 
 

Aside that - personalities per definition are really just taking a large number of specific personal traits and lumping them together according to what some believe are common 'blending of traits'. Amid the 16 personality types - no one fits into any such category 100%. It might be painful for some to accept - but liking gothic music doesn't necessarily mean you're creative. Likewise - a successful businessman might not actually like being the center of attention in a meeting, etc.

When it comes to those specific personal traits (liking orange Vs liking black) - things of that nature are all related to how the brain interprets input - how it processes stimuli into various chemicals/pulses - and where it sends it - then how that area receives it. This is all a mix of how we interpret visual stimulus (as art strongly relates to music), auditory input (everything from vocal tones, bass VS treble, male VS female, so on), and lyrical content.

I'm sure a few people here might like Justin Timberlake but odds are most of us don't like him - his persona, his physical appearance, the sound of his music, his lyrical content, the tone of his voice. We might not only dislike him - but might be pushed to deep seeded loathing to be point of becoming emotionally unhinged when faced with listening to a full album of his.

Someone will have a deep, negative and adverse response to just reading his name in this post - and maybe even negate me as a person based on daring to mention him.

One depressing thing I learned through my college courses is that we are all a product of our minds. What appeals to us is shaped by learned / developed chemical responses within the brain that were in the makings before we learned how to flip the bird to our parents and realized that fuck is a versatile term. It all comes down to where the mind sends chemical signals of X Y Z. Humor - for example - is partially connected to the responses and use of the Medial Prefrontal Cortex (which control reward-based behaviors). If your brain takes in external stimuli, and sends the chemical response to a different portion of your brain - you won't find that external stimuli to be rewarding when you respond to it. How many times have you given a joke only for someone to become extremely angry? Obviously their MPC didn't get the message.

Music components are processed in the same manner - different locations of your brain receive and respond to said stimuli.
Visual appeals (what do we all like? Dark, emotionally-connected, highly contrasting (black on white) - etc . . . most of us hold these visuals in high regard. Odds are very few on this site enjoy wearing pastel colors and definitely do not have pink rainbows on their bedspreads.)
Audio appeals (self explanatory - but even within 'Metal' you have people with extremely defined tastes. For example: loving Black Sabbath but disliking any sort of guttural vocals - even if the music itself is Black Sabbath inspired.)

So on - so forth. All of our interests are dealt with in this way. Who we like to associate with, who we don't. Why some seek out a variety of different music styles while others don't. Etc etc etc.

There is nothing I have experienced and no bit of research in my life that shows that 'people who are extremely disconnected like thrash metal' - I believe it's a myth, entirely hypothesized and not substantiated by any sort of findings. I've become more sociable as an adult only to find my interest in heavier metal music to be growing, not declining. . .and so many people I know who are NOT of a similar personality-type still enjoyed the same type of music I did. I was the goth chick in my highschool days who went to ToN concerts with my cheerleading friends.

We all loved Peter and the music just as much as the other - in fact, similar music interests were the same reason we *were* friends. I most certainly wasn't the only introvert, though - I just chose to express myself in a way that seemed more suitable. A few of my friends were more bothered by maintaining the appearance of social conformity - thus they tried to associate with the 'popular' (cheerleading) crowd. In a not-surprising twist: they all struggled with peer pressure and issues of alcoholism and drug abuse.

So in essence - for certain people I've known - trying to fit in with what they thought was a more 'socially acceptable' crowd was in fact a sign of personal issues and low self esteem.

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Doomed Cowboy
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri May 03, 2013 8:21 pm
Posts: 209
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 3:34 pm 
 

I'd say there is a bit of a connection, but I think you would have to look into what sort of sub genres one listens too. Most of those I know who listen to the "lighter" side of metal- traditional, stoner, doom, speed, thrash and such- tend to be more extroverted than those who are big fans of "extreme" genres. I'm the former, and I'm much more social than those I know who are fans of the latter.

I'd also argue that, to an extent, those who are metal heads are choosing to introverted rather than being inclined to do so.
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xThe__Wizard
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:59 pm
Posts: 845
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 3:35 pm 
 

Hate the Morning wrote:
On the note of social-issues: why is it necessarily a bad thing to want to avoid large numbers of people? Why is being 'shy' considered bad? A problem to be fixed? Why isn't being a social butterfly and unwilling to have 'time to ones self with quiet privacy' a bad thing on a large scale? It's simply this: Certain societies decided it was a bad thing - for reasons now long since considered archaic and primitive.


No one is saying being a bit introverted is bad. Everyone enjoys their alone time to just be by themselves and catch up on things they like/their life.

Hate the Morning wrote:
In fact, my life is much less stressed when it comes to that. In the past - real-life friends presented dire complications, constant issues, and were nothing but a headache. They had to be factored into my weekly plans, contacted routinely as to not hurt their feelings - etc. Honestly - when a few serious problems came up because of friendships I realized there was nothing in it worth pursuing. I severed ties and burned all bridges. My time is now focused on things that are important to me and essential in life.


Doesn't sound like you can handle having friends man. Sending a text isn't that hard.
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Hate the Morning
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 4:32 am
Posts: 6
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 4:37 pm 
 

xThe__Wizard wrote:
Hate the Morning wrote:
On the note of social-issues: why is it necessarily a bad thing to want to avoid large numbers of people? Why is being 'shy' considered bad? A problem to be fixed? Why isn't being a social butterfly and unwilling to have 'time to ones self with quiet privacy' a bad thing on a large scale? It's simply this: Certain societies decided it was a bad thing - for reasons now long since considered archaic and primitive.


No one is saying being a bit introverted is bad. Everyone enjoys their alone time to just be by themselves and catch up on things they like/their life.


True.

Quote:
Hate the Morning wrote:
In fact, my life is much less stressed when it comes to that. In the past - real-life friends presented dire complications, constant issues, and were nothing but a headache. They had to be factored into my weekly plans, contacted routinely as to not hurt their feelings - etc. Honestly - when a few serious problems came up because of friendships I realized there was nothing in it worth pursuing. I severed ties and burned all bridges. My time is now focused on things that are important to me and essential in life.


Doesn't sound like you can handle having friends man. Sending a text isn't that hard.


No, I couldn't - not those friends and what they expected out of friendship. Sure - casual friendships are great, which I do maintain. I suppose I said a lot of unnecessary drabble sans the whys and hows of what happened and all the like - an entire thread derail.

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megalowho
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 4:33 am
Posts: 479
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 5:53 pm 
 

MalignantTyrant wrote:
I'm not socially anxious at all, but I am pretty introverted because, most of the time, regular conversation bores me to tears and, not to sound like an asshole but most everyone I interact with on a daily basis are boring fucking people, not just to talk to but just in general lol. And if they aren't boring then they're incredibly stupid, or both...


Varth wrote:
I'm an introvert in the sense that I think most people are dumb and most conversations are a dead end.


I find much to appreciate and agree with in these posts. :) Check out this George Carlin bit:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyWsFfd9pqE

Doomed Cowboy wrote:
I'd also argue that, to an extent, those who are metal heads are choosing to introverted rather than being inclined to do so.


Replace "choosing to be introverted" with "choosing to be isolated (reclusive, withdrawn, etc.)", and maybe there's an argument to be made.

It's not a major complaint; I'm just nit-picking because I don't think introversion - the personality trait - should be regarded as a matter of choice. (I wouldn't disagree that extraverts can, however, choose to mimic or adopt the sort of behavioral habits that result from introversion.) In order to be an introvert, you have to be put together in such a way that you experience social interaction as more draining and taxing than solitary activity. Dominant, assertive conversational styles and the like are "unnatural" to me as an introvert, in that they require a strenuous, concerted effort; I feel - emphasis on feel - more "at home" as an observer than as the person who initiates and guides conversation. What's typically said is that extraverts gain energy from social interaction; whereas for introverts, it's the opposite, and a significant amount of alone time is needed to reenergize. This is basically a matter of how one's brain reacts to one's environment, I think.

(Incidentally, I would say that this is what makes it annoying for introverts when, e.g., fellow partygoers say things like "C'mon, buddy! Loosen up and have a good time! Go strike up a conversation with that attractive stranger over there!" :lol:)

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Doomed Cowboy
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri May 03, 2013 8:21 pm
Posts: 209
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 6:41 pm 
 

Yeah, I guess that was poor wording. I just think that the majority of people aren't necessarily introverted or extroverted, they're somewhere in between. As they experience life and grow, I believe they make a conscious choice whether or not they want to be social. Now, they may have some psychological aspect about them that promotes that, I know little of psychology, but I do think that it is to a certain extent chosen. I say that, because I know many people who are very friendly and thoughtful, very socially adept, but avoid social gatherings like the plague.
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OneSizeFitzpatrick
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 4:56 pm
Posts: 686
Location: A smoldering ruin with wi-fi, Chechnya
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 9:22 pm 
 

I was kinda expecting to see these kinds of results with this question, thanks for all the input too. Also of note is the amount of time one spends surfing the internet (on a daily basis) probably has some correlation with isolationist tendencies/some degree of social anxiety. Hell, there might be just as many metal enthusiasts out there that love interacting with people socially (as I'm sure anyone here who's ever been to a concert or fest is well aware of) and these results are completely skewered because they're all out doing social things with other people and I'm here typing this long, drawn out message on metal archives. Personally, my social anxiety hit me long before I got into violent, aggressive heavy metal music. The fact that metal is such an "outcast" music genre definitely could have a role in this.
Again, this is all completely hypothetical and I figured it'd spark a good talking point, I don't believe anything I've said is set in stone at all, just speculating and shit. I dunno if there's a general psychology thread, but I wouldn't mind morphing this thread into it... that is, if the forum gestapo would allow it.
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JakeTheSage
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:07 pm
Posts: 7
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 11:26 pm 
 

I have anxiety issues mostly relating to OCD. I also tend to be an introvert, but have been spending more time with people in general lately. It's apparently good for me, or something.

I don't know if I'd say there's a link to metal in that, except that I probably wouldn't have done research into obscure European bands that fit my taste if I had been out on a particular Saturday night in high school.

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the_raytownian
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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 2:32 am 
 

i dunno. I've always had really bad social anxiety, an d I still do now.

I actually find a lot of "stereotypical metalheads" a little bit grating/annoying for how extroverted they are, even. I just can't really identify with the mentality because of my anxiety problems, I think.

I have to be drunk to be social/extroverted, or otherwise take shit liek Xanax. I am too anxious/shy/self-aware/nervous./whatever otherweise, so I mostly just clam up in public.
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the_raytownian
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Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 2:51 am 
 

ps; I hope this doesn;t turn into one fo those "Metulhedz are inherently more anxious/depressed because they are more intelligent than the rest of the population jerk-off threads". :|

HellishHound wrote:
I do have anxiety/social anxiety problems, though they are close to non-existent since I started smoking grass on a regular basis. People can say what they want to it but it helped/helps my mental state tremendously.


Funy enough, weed just makes me social anxiety even worse unless I am in a group of trusted friends. I hate beinghigh in public or around a bunch of strabngers. It's fucking hellish for me.

EDIT: I'm too drunk to read this whole thread right now.
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Mike_235
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Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 2:43 am
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Location: New Zealand
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 5:56 am 
 

It's funny, I used to be really out-going and had a lot of friends, but all that changed around the same time that I got into metal. Now I'm not saying metal was the cause, but I do think a lot of the themes explored in metal are the reason people who feel alienated often stumble upon this genre of music.

As for the whole "extroversion Vs introversion" debate, I think they both have their strengths and weaknesses and neither is necessarily better than the other. Shyness, on the other hand, is what I would consider to be a weakness because it's usually due to inhibitions that stem from self-consciousness or feelings of inferiority, and not simply wanting to be alone.

Honestly, for those people who say they don't like spending time with people and prefer to be alone, that's all well and good if it's true, but I suspect a lot of people delude themselves into thinking that when it's not true because it's easier than facing the reality, that's what I do. This is especially true for those of you who think they can't get along with others because you are somehow a superior being. This is a blatant coping mechanism.

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ScandalfTheShite
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2012 10:46 am
Posts: 392
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 7:54 am 
 

I used to be very silent and unsocial a few years ago, but things have gotten better now. Still enjoy loneliness though. Very much. I guess the most natural thing for me is to be alone or with my closest friends and family, the people I know best. I still attend some gigs/record fairs and that shit every now and then, but I don't socialize much.

So yes, I'm mostly a total loner and outsider, even a reject if you will. But I'm quite okay with that. As I said, it's not hard for me to be alone. I think everyone should learn to be alone sometimes. Even most of my hobbies are mostly a lonely work. Of course my mental illness might also have something to do with me being anti-social, don't know. It definitely hasn't helped.
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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 10:09 am 
 

Metal is a niche fandom, in the same way that other hobbies like Magic the Gathering, board games and other geek hobbies are. These kinds of niche fandoms and hobbies do not solely attract the socially awkward and introverted, but there's a lot of overlap to say the least. With stuff like all of these things, it's escapism, as well as simply something involving and interesting they can devote time to - a good hobby.

Me, I was like that for like a year or two when I was 15 or so, but since then I've become very outgoing and personable, as I always was as a little kid too.
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nekuomanteia
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Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2009 7:37 pm
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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 12:02 pm 
 

I started high school far away from where I grew up, making me feel quite awkward and lonely especially since the metal scene was nonexistant, whereas where I was from, I belonged to a large group of headbangers, freaks, punks, and skaters. Now I couldn't draw a skull without somebody asking me if I was depressed and or sent to the counselor. By simply wearing my Asphyx, Grave, and Carcass shirts at school, the death mongers started to come out of the woodwork and approach me, even some goth-punk chicks intrigued by my Butchered at Birth T. Still the number of friends was low and most lived miles away. I think i was feeling homesick and nothing could pull me out of it until I decided to revel in the isolation, to accept it as my fate be it doom or salvation, and nothing could help me cope with this anguish more than the mighty GODFLESH. I discovered them when a small radio station out of houston played Christbait Rising right in the middle of the day. This was different than anything else I've ever heard before. With the nuance of enhanced interrogation followed by private torture I dove right into the self infliction. I don't know how I ever broke out of that state of mind or if I ever completely did, but I know it well, it's soothing, it's shameful, depressing, it's become a part of me, it's my own. Over time I've gradually become outgoing and explored other music that requires you to be more sociable. Or maybe my drive to be sociable led me to other genres. Sometimes I laugh at moody teenagers while I forget that I used to be one myself. Sometimes I sympathize with what I believe to be genuine depression, other times I scoff at it.

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colin040
Metal freak

Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2007 6:00 pm
Posts: 4525
Location: Netherlands
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 12:13 pm 
 

Empyreal wrote:
Me, I was like that for like a year or two when I was 15 or so, but since then I've become very outgoing and personable, as I always was as a little kid too.


Same here. During my teens I guess I was a bit more of an introvert person because I didn't feel there were many people with the same interests (not just talking about metal here) but this period didn't last longer for 2 years or so. Before and after that I'd always like company around me and socialise a lot. Hell, my mother even told me that in first grade, at the age of 4, I'd play with everyone of my class once school was over. :)

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henkkjelle
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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 12:29 pm 
 

I remember my mother telling me that when I was little (also at the age of 4/5) I would talk to absolutely everyone. I would just start talking to evey single stranger that crossed my path. I would also play games with them, like telling a shop assistant not to alert my mother about the fact that I was playing hide and seek with her, after which I would hide underneath a clothes rack. I also endured the usual teen grump years, but now I'm just a "normal" person when it comes to socialization. I can talk to pretty much anyone without feeling akward, but I also like being on my own.
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MARSDUDE
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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 12:57 pm 
 

I used to wash people's feet at the beach, just for the fuck of it.

Now I can't even look people in the eyes.

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Desperta_Ferro
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Jun 13, 2010 6:45 am
Posts: 599
Location: Argentina
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 1:34 pm 
 

I was thinking... I can talk with anyone, hell, I can stand up and talk in front of my whole class, discuss with professors, I don't give a fuck.

But I hate social gatherings. I hate socializing. I don't talk with anyone in my class, when it's over, I just put on my earphones, people are boring.
I like to be alone, going out is a chore for me, I don't enjoy it at all.
I rather be alone listening to metal or reading or playing video-games or whatever. I never felt depressed or anything like that, I just don't care.
If I am in a situation where I HAVE TO talk, I do it whitout feeling awkward, but talking with other people is like my last resource, if I can go whitout interacting with anyone, that's what I do.

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henkkjelle
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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 1:42 pm 
 

MARSDUDE wrote:
I used to wash people's feet at the beach, just for the fuck of it.

Now I can't even look people in the eyes.


Cause and effect.
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inhumanist
Metal freak

Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2011 5:09 pm
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Location: 50 Forts Along The Rhine
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 2:08 pm 
 

Memories of awkward moments from my childhood still haunt me. Everything stupid which I did or said sticks to me like a trauma. Every single one of these memories could jump at me at any given moment like a goddamn war flashback. Puberty was like the fucking WWII in that regard, and what I got out of it was severe social anxiety. Yes, I think metal helps me cope with my fucked up psyche, but that's not why I got into it. That was because of the misfits I hung out with.
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Marag
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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 2:40 pm 
 

I've always been quiet, during high school i was know as the "silent bob" of the class, so much that some people thought I was a foreign exchange student because I never spoke. I've gone through phases of being sociable despite this, to times where I was awkward as hell and scared shitless of people. Nowadays I don't care anymore. My psychiatrist says i'm extremely dysfunctional in regards to socialisation but I don't see whats wrong with it lol. I never thought of metal as related to this in any way, if anything, it helped my cope with my pent-up aggression and boring as fuck school life.

Most metalheads are pretty social and don't strike me as introverts

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xThe__Wizard
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:59 pm
Posts: 845
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 2:46 pm 
 

inhumanist wrote:
Memories of awkward moments from my childhood still haunt me. Everything stupid which I did or said sticks to me like a trauma. Every single one of these memories could jump at me at any given moment like a goddamn war flashback. Puberty was like the fucking WWII in that regard, and what I got out of it was severe social anxiety. Yes, I think metal helps me cope with my fucked up psyche, but that's not why I got into it. That was because of the misfits I hung out with.


I feel ya man I get the same thing. I remember saying embarrassing things at random and it makes me feel so dumb.
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