I don't mind praying out loud, either. I tend to feel like it's an honor and priviledge.
What stimulates you? In a good way? Ideas; new delicious thoughts; beauty; feeling connected to a person or place; losing myself in a creative project; insights and revelations; those thoughts that spring from a place that doesn't have words; mystery; playing with my dogs; sharing laughter with someone I love; a certain type of atmosphere created by lighting, music, and a particular type of company.
How much external stimulation can you tolerate? Some, but not too much. If I can withdraw and regulate it, so to speak, I can handle it all right. Even noisy, crowded places can be interesting if I don't have to engage continuously--if I can be allowed to sit and watch and think my own thoughts. In general, I tend to avoid places with unnecessary noise or bright flourescent lights. I don't like multitasking and it irritates me no end when people leave the TV on while they're talking to others, expecting people will just ignore it.
What is your internal world like? It's sensitive to beauty and full of wonder. Always active and alive, making connections, searching for truth, replaying events to evaluate and analyze. Sometimes I feel so full of joy that I think I'll explode; other times it seems I'll be crushed by the weight of a sadness or fear. All alone, my world takes on the patina of an ancient tale with faint mystery, or a delightful fancy, or a stirring romance, or a majestic exploration and adventure. I shift perspectives and enjoy the novelty of seeing things in different lights.
How much alone time do you need and how often do you need it? I live alone. When I worked alone in a basement office, I talked to friends or family on the phone once day and met with close friends a couple times a week. Now that I'm teaching, cooped up with 30 teenagers for 6 hours a day, I almost never visit friends. My energy is fully drained every day and I can't function if I can't recharge. I thought it would get better once I got used to it, but it's gotten more and more difficult to force myself to get up and go to work every day.
If the nonalone time is peaceful and pleasant, just in the company of close (and also introverted) friend who doesn't make requirements of me, then I don't need an over-abundance of alone time: probably an hour or so a day would suffice.
What comes along with being an introvert that most people don't realize?
~ I live inside my own mind because it's much more fascinating than the external world. There's nothing sad or lonely or second-rate about it.
~ If I'm not interacting with you, there's a chance it's because I've evaluated your thoughts and decided that my own are more interesting. Or it might be that I can't talk becuase I'm very busy listening and noticing what's going on around me. Or sometimes I'm just enjoying the peace and quiet.
~ Probably most people on this forum realize it, but often people in real life don't realize it: being an introvert does not mean I dislike people.