An Excitable’s Guide to Excitable

Warning: self-disclosure ahead.

I should start by making you aware of a couple of things: like all other people, I have a few derailers. Ok, I have a lot of them. Perhaps the most plaguing is a very close friend of mine, known as Excitable. People are often surprised by this, as in professional and social settings I am pretty adept at keeping it under wraps. At home, however, I am a hybrid of a powder keg and a wrecking ball. My low-moderate Adjustment score means that the fuse to my Excitable moments is short to non-existent, and also leaves me with massive post-explosion guilt. Furthermore, I am off the charts on Inquisitive and Learning Approach, so I am constantly trying to understand the reasons that drive my behaviors. So I explode, feel terrible about it, introspect and try to understand why, ultimately become frustrated about the why, and explode again…wash, rinse, repeat. It truly is a vicious cycle.

After 33 years of running through the cycle above, I have come to some conclusions as to why I have to wear a scarlet “E” around my neck: it is only natural and is all about energy and balance. A bomb explodes because its internal components rapidly and efficiently convert potential energy into kinetic energy in the form of heat. As they heat, they expand, and as they expand internal pressure builds. The pressure’s only relief comes via rapid dispersion into the surrounding stable atmosphere, which we see as an explosion. The aforementioned happens very quickly and, generally speaking, once the reaction has started it cannot be stopped. The same goes for me (and I assume for other Excitables as well). This is why telling an excitable individual to count to ten is a terrible idea – there is no stopping the reaction and stalling it only builds more pressure and leads to a more violent explosion. Best course of action: Take cover and let it pass over.

Clearly, I am Excitable because I am made up of atoms that convert and release energy more efficiently than those that comprise my calmer counterparts. It is obviously a positive attribute because I don’t harbor stress; it exits me with the force of a 10 megaton bomb, but once it is gone, it is gone. As quickly as it built and blew up, the reaction is over and all is peaceful.

So to my fellow Excitables: Unite! Consider this not your cross to bear, but your red badge of courage. Embrace your gifted ability to expunge the tensions that cause hair loss and heart conditions.  Encourage stress bearers to take charge of their lives and health by throwing things and speaking in strings of expletives yet unknown. And by all means, always keep in mind that those to whom you have to apologize are simply envious of the incredible efficiency of your molecular makeup.

Mischievous? Me?!? No. Never.

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