This person who I am friends with has a blog and it updates the perfect amount. Not too much that I get sick of it, but enough that I'm like "oh, yeah, this is interesting." She posted about how weird it is that people don't perceive you the way that you perceive yourself. Rather than comment with some essay I thought I would post here about it.
One way to look at the difference, roughly, is to have friends fill out johari squares for you (maybe you remember when I did this about five years ago. These were my results; I also did the nohari. If you never did it before and want to fill out the johari for me, go ahead! Maybe I've changed). You can look at the results yourself. I think the way others perceive me depends partly on who they are and when they interact with me. For example, most people in my ward tend to label me as intelligent since they know I'm in grad school. But in my graduate cohort, we're all smart so my defining feature gets to be something like "cynical" or "cheeky." With my family [incl. in-laws] everyone is cheeky so I think I'm more defined by being easily embarrassed. I don't know, I'm making it up.
I used to think that one of my better traits was sticking with things and enduring, but I now see this as more of a neutral trait. And I've come to realize that I'm not better at finishing things than other people are. Other people say that I am introverted, but compared to how I used to be, I am a veritable social butterfly! And I think that now that I'm not taking social psychology classes I have toned down on my "actually, research shows..." (maybe it just feels like that because my husband does it too?).
One positive trait I have that I was vaguely aware of is that I don't mind admitting that I don't know something. Maybe I got this from my mom? But if I don't know something, I'm pretty sure that I could learn it if I wanted to (with the exception of physics, possibly).
Oh great, another introspective blog post all about me. Maybe I never matured from being a teenager. Wait, I think I did. I don't write emo poetry anymore. :-)