Ayyyyyyyyyyyy!!! I should have used an 8 pt. font for us Introverts. It’s way too loud! Nevertheless, you are worthy of a salute, especially today. A day reserved just for us.
Yes – By nature, I’m an Introvert. For the sake of my profession, I have to behave like an Extrovert. Or ExtrAvert if that’s how you prefer to spell it. Nevertheless, I prefer to put the emphasis on being “EXTRA.” I will also take a moment to mention the center of the spectrum, Ambiverts. I wouldn’t dare leave out the middle-child of personalities lest they feel ignored and overlooked.
Today, I celebrate all Introverts!
Often misunderstood, we Intro’s are pretty decent people! We tend to be deep thinkers and prefer smaller, meaningful gatherings with a few friends rather than large social affairs. Throughout junior high and high school I was constantly called “Siddity.” Lots of people automatically assumed I was stuck up because of my silence in large groups but my circle of friends knew that at lunch time in the pergola, I could talk them half to death! The bell would ring and I still had much of my lunch uneaten from all of the conversation. Good times!
Sometimes I feel I should receive either combat or circus pay for all the mental and physical warfare and contortions my body experiences before I have to speak at a conference, make a presentation or attend a social event. However, after years of navigating between both worlds, once I’m actually there, I’m right in my groove when on stage and I’ve learned how to become more relaxed in that atmosphere and even enjoy it. And then go back to my private space ASAP to recharge. But I’ve learned that I have to stick around for the meet and greets otherwise people can get offended by my silence.
Sadly, because we are not the noisiest people in the workplace, Introverts are often overlooked for promotions and leadership roles to colleagues who are more boisterous, and frequently less qualified. As entrepreneurs, introverts are successful because they “create and lead companies from a very focused place,” says Susan Cain, author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking” and founder of Quiet Revolution, a website for introverts. According to the Management Research Journal ( 2011, Vol. 54, No. 3, 528–550.) “It is possible that although extraversion is a consistent predictor of supervisor and subordinate perceptions of leadership effectiveness, extraverted leadership may not always contribute positively to group performance.”
Far from being shy, little, insecure wallflowers, we are great leaders, objective listeners, highly focused and creative innovators, just to name a few of our desirable qualities. J.K. Rowling, basketball legend Michael Jordan, Barbara Walters, Bill Gates, Michelle Pfeiffer, Abraham Lincoln, Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep are just a few of us highly successful Intro’s!
Although there are many great qualities of Introverts, my favorite quality is the commitment to their goals as they have a tendency towards self-discipline and commitment. Unlike many Extra’s, they are self-affirming so they don’t have that deep need for approval from external sources. As a result, they direct their energies towards the pursuit of an ambitious goal instead. This aids in their success!
Which personality type are you?
Take a look at the chart above and tell me in the comments below where you best fit in this Myers-Briggs (TM) assessment! Are you surprised by the results? How has being an Introvert helped or hindered you in your relationships, either professionally or personally? How did you capitalize on them? What did you do to overcome them? We’d like to know!
My point is this: Just. Be. You. In order to achieve success, you’ll have to stretch yourself. Enter and understand the world of your Ambivert and Extravert counterpart and in all of your discomfort, stay there a while and grow.
Okay friends, that’s it for now. We Intro’s like to pop in, say a quick hello and get out! Plus, I’m sure my “Extra” readers will need the leftover space in this article to express themselves! All written in good fun, of course!
Hang on. Keep the Faith and stay in touch.
Meet me at the top!
♛ Melanie Grace
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