Question: When you greet people you run into in your everyday lives, be they co-workers or clients or associates or customers or random strangers on the street, what is your preferred form of salutation? I'm not talking about close friends or family, but people with whom you're less familiar.
Are you a "hello" person, or a "hi" person?
I've been conducting an informal study over the past few years, probably...with myself as the main subject, but many other unknowing participants involved as well. And one thing I've deduced from this study is that, even if I make a conscious effort to change my habit, I'm overwhelmingly more of "hello" person.
"So??" you ask.
Well...I've also been a bit curious as to the connection between hello/hi and introvertism/extrovertism.
For those of you who know me in person, here comes the most shocking, unbelievable statement you'll ever read about me on this blog or anywhere else:
I am an introvert.
(stunned, aren't you?)
I've taken those Myers-Briggs personality tests in the past, but can't remember what all of my letters were. You know the ones...they classify you as an ISFJ or an ESTP, or one of fourteen other combinations. The one letter that I'm 100 percent positive about is the "I". I'd have to lie like a rug on the test to ever see an "E" pop up.
Perhaps as another entry this month, seeing as how I'm this once-a-day kick, I'll take one of those tests again and post the results here.
But I think I may have invented a new category to include: the INAKTCE. (I Need A Keyboard To Communicate Effectively.)
What I've seen quite often in my research is that people who appear to be bubbling over with personality to spare are much more likely to shoot you a "Hi!" as you pass on the street or interact for a few minutes. Whereas people who are more reserved tend to choose "hellooo" or, if they're particularly quiet, even for introverts, a barely audible " 'lo."
There are exceptions, of course, and I don't have any concrete data to back up my theory. If I made up a couple spreadsheets and pie charts and bar graphs, I might be able to get some grant money for my study.
I can't stand the word "shy," but I suppose that's what I am. I much prefer "reserved," and can accept "quiet." And I despise the fact that being this way makes some people automatically consider a person to be aloof. (although...isn't "aloof" one of the coolest words in the whole entire dictionary? I think so.) Just because I'm not pushing and shoving to be the center of attention doesn't mean I'm disinterested or aloof. It just means that, um...I don't always have a lot of words coming out of my mouth.
Even among my closest friends, I'm usually most comfortable hanging a couple rows back. If I've got something to say, I certainly don't hesitate to speak up. But I don't have to be the loudest cymbal in the band. I'm more like...an oboe.
Kind of a lot to chew on all because of two tiny words, isn't it?
So tell me...
Do you say "hello"?
Or do you say "hi"?
"Why can't we get all the people together in the world that we
really like and then just stay together? I guess that wouldn't work.
Someone would leave. Someone always leaves. Then we would
have to say goodbye. I hate goodbyes. I know what I need.
I need more hellos."