Being an Introvert - Blessings & Curses
Some of the world’s successful people in business, politics, science, literature, arts and entertainment were introverts-the list includes Bill Gates, Abraham Lincoln, Albert Einstein, Audrey Hepburn and JK Rowling. Until you succeed, being an introvert is considered a disadvantage and you often feel inferior to your extrovert counterparts. The word introvert was first used by Psychologist Carl Jung in 1920 to describe people who are drawn to themselves, their thoughts, feelings and emotions.
New research and understanding of introverts have revealed that introverts have their unique strengths that may be useful for organizations, family life and society but most often they are overlooked by people.
Here are some of the blessings and curses of being an introvert.
1. You Listen More, Talk Less
The hallmark of good communication is to listen more and talk less. Introverts, by nature, listen and observe more. Therefore, you respond better in talks as you help others reveal more of their thoughts and feelings before you respond.
2. You are Never Alone
As an introvert, you need not be in the midst of people to feel secure or to while away time. You are your own best friend. You can feel at ease with your emotions and thoughts not requiring someone to share it.
3. You Think and Reflect More
Introverts, by nature, observe and reflect more on what’s happening around them. Therefore, introverts are good at analysis and decision making. Therefore, they are less likely to be pulled by impulsive decisions such as making a purchase or an important decision.
4. You are More Imaginative and Creative
If you are an introvert, you are more likely to be creative and imaginative. Naturally, you may be having better innovative ideas to implement in business, arts and life. You can work for longer hours on a problem and concentrate more compared to extroverts who may get bored easily.
1. People Think Something is Wrong with You
If you don’t talk, interact much or don’t express your thoughts openly, people think something is wrong with you. At work or in school, you are more likely to be frequented with questions such as – Are you Ok? Is something troubling you? Are you happy?
2. You are not Seen as Capable and They Try to Change You
Society has a tendency to equate success with the outgoing or extrovert nature. You are considered inappropriate for many tasks until you prove yourself. Sometimes, at school or at work, people try to change your ways to make you more sociable which can be irritating for you.
3. You Hate Networking and Hangouts
You have a liking to stay alone and not being pushed to attend parties and networking events. You hate gossiping and small talks. It drains out all your energy. Sometimes, people may sympathize with you or may ridicule you making you awkward in such situations.
4. You may be Considered Rude, Snobbish or Weird
As you keep away from people and talk less, you may be considered to be rude, snobbish or even weird. You also feel there is no one to talk on behalf of you or defend you as the world is dominated by extroverts.
Until recently, it was seen to be a curse to be an introvert but new research insights, especially after the publication of more than a dozen best sellers on the subject such as Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking written by Susan Cain and Maertil Olsen Lansey’s The Introvert Advantage-How Quiet People can thrive in an Extrovert World have helped people understand the power of introversion.