Are you an introvert? Do you prefer being at home alone rather than being out with others, at a party, or meeting new people? You certainly aren’t alone, but before you write off your ability to make new friends and successfully interact with others, it is important to realize that introverts are able to excel at interaction just like extroverts, it may take a little bit of learning and growing on your part, but introverts can make very successful leaders and communicators with a little bit of practice.
Disclaimer: NEVER classify yourself as something. Introversion or extroversion are learned traits. If you prefer to be alone, or prefer to be with people is dependent upon your beliefs, habits, and past experiences. People who possess certain skills and have had certain experiences may gravitate towards one of these two types of people, but that doesn’t mean that it just the way you are, it just means that’s the type of person you have been up until now At any point in time you can decide to start developing other aspects of yourself and create the person you desire to be.
So I would say that I have been an extroverted introvert most of my life. While I often prefer to be alone and doing things that develop myself in some way, I also enjoy good company, conversation, and learning about others views and ideas. Introversion gives people a lot of time to examine themselves, work on improving themselves, develop skills, and plan successful futures, but a firm committal to being introverted can seriously limit your ability to do many things in life.
The benefits of introversion.
Introverts have a lot of time to examine themselves introspectively, plan for the future, organize their lives, and develop personal skills. Introverts can be highly intelligent, highly self aware, effective planners, and are often great working on individual projects.
The drawbacks of introversion.
Introverts often have problems working with others (which is a necessity in today’s world), they often have big egos that make it hard to understand others or their beliefs, they often have social anxiety, and many times they have difficulty getting things done because they try to do everything on their own without the help of others.
Where do introverts need to grow in order to be successful?
Be willing to create a network of at least several close friends and associates that they can regularly interact with and communicate with. At some level communication is going to be needed for success, having a few people close to you can help you build trust for others and learn to enjoy the company of other people.
Be at least willing to meet new people. Introverts need to realize the value in networking and developing interpersonal skills, it may feel awkward, but getting good at dealing with others is going to greatly increase your capacity of improvement as a person.
Look for meaning in interactions with others. Even if you don’t yet enjoy being around other people, it helps to look for some sort of meaning or lesson that you can reflect upon from each interaction you have with another person. Can you learn some new information, identify a new perspective, or broaden your horizons by dealing with other people at each conversation?
Surround yourself with people you have things in common with. For the most part, people like being in situations that make them feel more comfortable, and being around people whom you share personal interests or beliefs with is a great way to test the waters and develop your interpersonal skills.
Introverts possess qualities that can greatly increase their success and effectiveness as people, but they must not let introversion define them and prevent them forming new associations, meeting new people, and bonding with others. We all need interaction with others to grow and excel as human beings. There is nothing wrong with be introverted and preferring your own company, but if you allow your introversion to define you and place you in isolation it can be a problem. If you are introvert, seek to develop an extroverted side and learn to enjoy the time you spend with others.