Communication

How To Know You Are An Introvert

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Our world is naturally extrovert-centric, and up until very recently, introverts got a bad rap. Naturally, introverts often feel the need to pretend to be extroverted more than they really are so they aren’t ridiculed by their friends for being a party-pooper or more necessarily so because they live and work in an extrovert-centric world. But after a while, you may have forgotten who you truly are and wonder why some things seem so difficult for you. Here’s a list of six behaviors that prove you are an introvert. If you have friends or family who are introverted please share this post with them.

You feel like a fraud when networking -

Textbook introverts are uncomfortable making small talk, which is a vital part of networking activities. If you feel something akin to a used car salesman no matter what the networking event is or feel you have nothing of interest to add to the conversation, or just dislike being put on the spot, you may be an introvert posing as an extrovert.

You feel out of place, even among a large group of friends -

Introverts much prefer one on one conversation rather than conversations with large groups, even if the group is full of friends. They often find the topic of conversation dull or not worth jumping in and talking about. However, when they are chatting with just one person, they can sway the topic of conversation to something that excites them. Still, you will find the introvert one of the first to leave the party when they have had enough.

You get overstimulated rather than bored -

A good description of an introvert shows they are rarely bored because there’s always something new and exciting to think about. They may have several projects that they are interested in, though they tend to focus on only one at a time. They love being by themselves and find solitary pastimes to be especially invigorating.  They do, however, get overstimulated when there’s too much going on.

You’ve been told you are intense -

A problem common to introverts is they enjoy jumping right into the deep pool of conversation. They feel idle chit-chat is a waste of time and energy and will start a conversation off with a deeply philosophical comment or question. This can freak out an extrovert who just wants to have a good time. Yet, in social situations, introverts often attach themselves to a trusted extrovert who makes it easier for them to meet new people and engage in the necessary small talk.

You shut down when over-stimulated -

When there’s too much going on all around an introvert, they head for the hills to hide. When that’s not possible, they simply shut down. This zoning out gives their brains a break - it’s a mental retreat they take if a physical one isn’t possible. When you can, you avoid being over-stimulated by saying no to things you know will drain you or make you feel uncomfortable.

You don’t run to answer your calls or respond to texts -

Introverts don’t like to be interrupted when they are thinking or working. Since they aren’t the gregarious folks that extroverts are, they have to be in the mood to talk to people. If they don’t feel like it when someone calls or texts them, they will allow the call go to voicemail and deal with the text at a later time. If you do this, it doesn’t mean you don’t like the person, but that you are in a rejuvenating space and need to be alone. You’ll catch up with them later.

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If you hadn’t guessed I am the quintessential introvert. Over the years I have noticed some patterns of the behavior have become easier while others are more difficult. For instance, it is harder for me to leave the house than it once was. Once I am out though, I find I can talk to anyone, where before I spoke to no one. 

If this post resonates with you and you see yourself in any of these behaviors let me know which ones. Yes, I am curious. And I am also buoyed by the knowledge that so many of us who are introverts own it proudly these days. Included in this number is Steven Spielberg, Mahatma Gandhi, Bill Gates, and Eleanor Roosevelt just to name a few.