The power of introverts

This post was inspired by a TED talk I watched this week, with the same title. (you can watch it here). Susan Cain decided to ‘speak dangerously’ and tell us why being introvert is more than ok! The main difference between introvert and extrovert people lies with how they get and spent their energy. It’s important to mention that no one is solely one or the other. Some people lean more to being introvert, like me, others to being extrovert, and you even have people that balance somewhere right in the middle.

Introverts like to devote their social energy to a small group of people, I for example prefer to have dinner with a friend over going to a party full of strangers. We don’t mind solitude, in fact we feel good when spending time alone. Introverts are more likely to think before they speak and will deliberate most steps in live before taking action or making a decision.

People that are more extrovert attach more importance to their social lives. They get their energy from interactions with people and tend to be more assertive. Usually, decisions are made more impulsively and they prefer to be surrounded by people rather than quiet environments.

Susan Cain mentions that our world is mainly focused on extrovert people. Which I do agree with. I sometimes feel like I have to be extrovert, like it is not OK to just be me. Ever since I was little I have been told to engage more in the group, to speak more, to get out of ‘my bubble’ etc. Feedback I’ve received from school and internships, that my work is good but I shouldn’t be so shy etc. I even followed a course on social skills, trying to be someone I am not.

And I know that all of these people have the right intentions. And I do agree with them on some points. I do agree with them that I should be less shy, because my shyness comes forward out of social fears and insecurity. I do want to work on that. But being shy and introvert are still two different things. What those people don’t seem to get is that for me, trying to be ‘more engaged’, as they describe it, costs me a lot of energy. And it’s not a one time investment. People are different. I express myself different, I think different, I act different, and I will feel or respond different in certain situations.

And that’s OK. Both extroverts and introverts have their own qualities, combined together, they make a great team. People already told me that I have a calming effect on them. You wouldn’t be able to guess when I’m nervous or stressed. It tends to calm others down as well. Introverts are often occupied with their inner thoughts and dreams, therefore they can be the creative ones. Who knows what is going on in our heads? πŸ™‚

I’m also more of a listener than a talker, I’d like to listen to what others have to say. When I am in a group, I like to observe, not in a creepy way, but I just like to follow their movements and conversations, and like that get to know people in my own way.

Introverts also tend to avoid conflicts.Β For me that’s definitely the case. This could be a good thing, but sometimes I feel like I should step up more for myself. In any case we tend to be the ones who try to avoid conflicts in the group as well, and keep a peaceful atmosphere.

As I already mentioned I’m also not an impulsive person. This can be both a negative and a positive thing. I would never just jump into something before thinking it through. But sometimes my life could use a bit more spontaneity, which I can learn from more extrovert people.

While extrovert people probably have more friends and interactions, I am more than happy with the people I have in my life. I don’t make friends easily, but the ones I have are great and loyal ones. Some, I’ve been friends with for a long while, others are more recent. These are the people I feel most comfortable with, and strangely I am more outgoing when I am surrounded by them. And even though I do not always express it, I care a lot about these people.

Just to make sure, this post isn’t anti-extrovert people. It’s just to point out that each is great and powerful in their own way, and we can complement one another.Β 

 

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33 thoughts on “The power of introverts

  1. I am an introvert on the Myers Briggs scale but I am not overly shy and I am definitely assertive. People leaning too much to the extrovert side stress me, also it may be a sign that they have not had their needs met in children and so are all “Look at me! Love me!”. I find it hard to be around attention seekers πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Well said, Emma. I agree with everything you said. I am a bit more of an introvert, but I definitely have extrovert tendencies. I love sitting at the communal table at restaurants. I love being among people in public spaces and people-watching. I love engaging one or two individual strangers in conversation (especially while traveling, domestic or abroad). I crave closeness with my best friends. I am a hugger. But I enjoy my privacy. I enjoy time alone. I am generally not outspoken. Especially in large groups or people that I do not know well, I will sit back and observe. Cheers to fellow introverts creating a safe, judgement-free space on our little corner of the Internet! Sending virtual hugs.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. This is a wonderful post. I’m an ambivert, but leaning strongly towards introvert. I prefer smaller social gatherings and a quiet night in and definitely have to spend a few quiet minutes after a long social gathering. But at the same time, I can be quite assertive and I also derive energy from being with certain people.
    For the world to work, I think we need both!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I think you expressed this very well. I too struggle with being an introvert who the world often tells to be an extrovert. I think there is much to learn on both sides but often times the world is afraid of what it doesn’t understand and introverts as you said are labeled more often because they aren’t understood. I’ve learned to do my best to be open and explain to people why my preferences are as they are:)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I relate so much! I am a listener and just fine with silence. I remember going to a girls camp one year and someone telling me to stop being shy, enjoy myself! Be myself! And I was enjoying myself.. until everyone’s eyes were on me waiting for something spectacular to happen haha! I enjoy just being around fun people, even though I’m not loud and talkative.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Such an impressive post, you’ve expressed yourself quite well and being an introvert I could relate to everything you wrote. I have watched Susan Cain’s TED Talk about introverts and it surely gave my confidence a little boost. The world and it’s people are constantly growing and moving forward in every aspect but even inspite of that most of the people still consider being an introvert a bad thing. Everyone is constantly telling you to “come out of the bubble”, “engage more”, “don’t be so quiet”, people need to accept that everyone is different and they shouldn’t try to change it. There are so many misconceptions in everyone’s heads about introverts but there is hope for a day when people will understand and the world will be a better place for both introverts and extroverts.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. same here, I’m also an introvert, not comfortable going to a party with many strangers, love to eat alone. But when an introvert meets another introvert, most of the time they get along with each other πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Hey, Curlygirl.

    Nice review, I consider introverts to be fascinating. I’m in love with one 😁

    However, what about the INFJ personality type? I have an article on that on my blog πŸ˜‰ I was intrigued with an article that seemed to describe me perfectly πŸ™‚

    I’m following you now πŸ˜‰πŸ™‚

    Like

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