Yes. I am an introvert and if you're like me you've probably been through the "Lord, why did you create me thus?'" phase.
It can be most unnerving to find that words elude you when you need them most. Or the fact that crowds and activity draws energy from you while others thrive on them. Or you mentally relive a conversation or moment where you should have spoken up more, given that person a piece of your mind instead of standing there like a stick figure. :( The list is longgg.
So what's an introvert body to do in this jet age, especially as per careers where it's a dog eat dog world and you have to speak up or get left behind? Well, I bumped into an article by Jobberman that made sense. The meat of it was how to sell yourself and succeed at a career (that seems to be tailor made for extroverts) despite being an introvert. Below is a short excerpt of the piece. Find the full article HERE
You are shy and introverted; you always seem to be at loss for words when you need the words most. And you are concerned, even worried that your career choice needs a certain level of being extroverted. So, how do you sell yourself seeing that you are such a shy person?
Three points were mentioned:
1. Know your audience very well: Make sure you understand the kind of people you want to sell yourself to, what they are interested in, what makes them tick, what businesses they are involved in etc.Research is therefore very essential.
2. Use your wealth of knowledge as your weapon against shyness: position yourself in your friend and family members’ mind as the go-to person on that industry and subject matter. Gradually, begin to talk to people outside your circle as you meet them, on the knowledge you have. For example, you know a lot about social media and you want to be positioned as someone who is vast in career fields related to social media. Let your conversations with people and problems create awareness in their minds that you know a lot about the subject matter. Pick up words and conversations in the line of that career and job, and talk about it.
3. Use other non-verbal platforms to sell yourself: Blog, be active on social media networks, get on the professional network platforms and build conversations around your business, job and career path.
Emphasis was:- Be an expert, become known as an expert and build relationships.
Another article I really like was written by Bryan Walsh of TIME Magazine. According to him there's an Upside to being an introvert. Although he started his article by examining the different ways in which the world system seems to be in favour of the extrovert. I particularly like this paragraph;
Simply being an introvert can also feel taxing--especially in America, land of the loud and home of the talkative. From classrooms built around group learning to open-plan offices that encourage endless meetings, it sometimes seems that the quality of your work has less value than the volume of your voice. *Ouch!*
Read more HERE
I think its good to encourage introverts to not see their personalities as a hindrance. It's a serious cause of insecurities and it certainly hampers creativity and performance.
But is the system really unfairly slanted toward the extroverts?
What do you think?