Let me first say this blog is written from the perspective of an extrovert with an extreme respect for those who are more introverted. I heard a young lady in my field give a short speech last week about how she was trying to become an extrovert and somewhere deep inside of her lived an extrovert. My heart hurt, because it was obvious somewhere down the line she must have been told that being an introvert was a bad thing or would hurt her business in some way.
I think when some people hear the word introvert they picture someone standing all alone in a corner with no friends. Some people have tended in the past to paint introversion as an identical twin with social awkwardness. These depictions could not be farther from the truth.
Introversion has no impact on your ability to be socially engaging, speak in front of people or be successful in your career. My wife is an introvert and stands in front of a class of teenagers daily and teaches them English and coaches Cheerleading. She is an animated storyteller and most people who know her casually assume she is an extrovert. I know her and I know a few things about her that make her the true definition of an introvert.
In my mind an introvert is as follows:
a.) Introverts are able to be around large groups of people and be social but when those moments are over they are completely exhausted.
b.) Introverts need to recharge and refresh alone after being in long periods of social interaction where extroverts tend to recharge by being WITH people.
c.) Introverts tend to allow a smaller group of people into their inner circle and to really know them. They are more discerning and choosy about who gets to really know them.
d.) Introverts tend to be better at soul care because they have to recharge in solitude for their sanity.
e.) Introverts help extroverts create healthier boundaries for social interaction and teach them the benefits of solitude and resting your mind and spirit.
f.) Introverts hold all types of jobs with all levels of success. Do not buy into the lie that Extraversion=Success.
g.) Introverts are typically deep thinkers.
All this to say, if you are introverted embrace it. You do not have to be extroverted to be successful. The key is not to be someone else but be the healthiest version of who you are. If we will take the time to learn from those who aren’t like us, that is the moment when the most growth can happen.