can't control thoughts

Dear Innie Friend,

I’m writing to you from Cusco, Peru today. I came to Peru for the introvert retreat in Sacred Valley and now I’m just chillin’ up here at 3,399 meters above sea level. The other day something happened to me here in Peru that I just know other introverts will relate to—at least on a metaphorical level…

I went on a day trip to Humantay Lake, which is a crystal blue lake nestled in the mountains. You have to take a three-hour bus and then hike for about an hour to get to it.

Or if you’re lazy like me, you rent a horse, thinking how nice it will be to take a meandering ride up the mountain. A nice idea, but a FAR cry from what actually happened.


I should have known by the look in my mule’s eye that things weren’t going to go as planned. He looked as if I had just crashed his retirement party and told him he had to go back to work.

introvert mind

“U MESSin Wit Da WRONG Mule LaDEE!”

This adorable little MoFo took me for a RIDE—which is to say that he zigzagged up the mountain, dragged me through tree branches, cut off other horses, and threatened to trample anyone that came in his path.

His favorite move was to nearly T-bone another horse in the belly before slowing down at the last moment. Meandering ride up the mountain my A**! I have never said the F-word so many times while on a horseback ride.

In my old mule’s defence, I would be grumpy too if I had to haul some lazy foreign lady’s butt up a mountain.

introvert mind

“OMG Da RIDe is OVER LadEE! GET OFF Meee!”

What this all has to do with introversion

Being the neurotic writer that I am, I decided that the experience had to be a metaphor for something. This is what I came up with:

In my book, The Irresistible introvert, I talk about how our thoughts are like horses (a comparison I borrowed from my dear friend, energy healer Alexa Linton). We can either choose to get on the horse and ride it to wherever it wants to take us. Or we can let it trot on by.

To add to that lovely little analogy, some thoughts are like angry, grumpy, stubborn-as-hell mules that you just KNOW are going to drag you through the branches. And yet, you get on them anyway—especially if you’re an introvert like me.

You see, we introverts love going for a good ol’ intellectual horseback ride. It’s entertaining, gives us something to do while the other humanoids engage in boring small talk.

Even when we know a thought is DESTRUCTIVE, we can’t help but give it a whirl to see where it takes us. We don’t even consider the idea that we can let that angry mule pass on by. We can choose a happier horse to ride…

Like this one:

introvert thoughts

“Hiiii! Lets B FRiendZ!” 🙂

If only I had gotten this guy, I might not have dropped F-bombs all the way up the mountain. But then I wouldn’t have had this great metaphor to share with you today. So, I guess it was worth it.

Other metaphors?

I’m curious if you can come up with anything else my experience with the stubborn mule could be a metaphor for. Please do share your ideas in the comments below!