Eliminate The Bias: A Celebration Of The Introvert
What comes to mind when you hear the word introvert? Do you think of someone who is anti-social or awkward? Would you perceive them as uptight with a boring personality?
Anti-social. Awkward. Uptight. Boring.
These negative stereotypes have all been used to describe introversion. They perpetuate a misunderstanding toward people who demonstrate introverted traits. It is no secret that this particular personality type has been subjected to a great deal of criticism. Our society seems to maintain the idea that being a quiet and reserved person is a bad thing. We are taught from a very young age that it is more favorable to be talkative and outgoing. We are constantly encouraged to “put ourselves out there” in highly social situations rather than seek refuge in environments that are more low-key. As a fellow introvert, I am here to tell you that, instead, we must eliminate the bias which claims that being extroverted is better.
The secret to life is to put yourself in the right lighting. For some it’s a Broadway spotlight, for others, a lamp lit desk. – Susan Cain
Many people mistakenly associate introversion with shyness. When a person is shy, it essentially means that social situations cause them to feel self-conscious or nervous. Shyness is a trait that a person can experience whether they are introverted or extroverted. Having said that, introversion has less to do with being shy and more with response to stimulation. In other words, how an individual is able to gather energy. Extroverts are the strongest when they are able to participate in large social gatherings. Introverts, on the other hand, prefer settings where they are either alone or surrounded by a small group of people.
Introversion has less to do with being shy and more with response to stimulation. In other words, how an individual is able to gather energy.
I am proud to be introverted. It has given me the tools to be highly self-reflective when it comes to my life and what truly interests me. I am able to dive deeper into my relationships with loved ones. It has also allowed me to be a more observant human being who chooses their words wisely. However, the pride that I have for being an introvert hasn’t always existed. For many years, I found myself envying extroverts. I wished I were more outgoing and outspoken because, for some reason, I thought that it meant I would be more likeable. Growing up, I felt out of place because, despite what some might say, I have never been a natural social butterfly. I preferred moments when I could be alone with my own thoughts or a good book. Solitude was where I felt at peace and perhaps, the most myself. It still is.
Remember that you will shine no matter what light you gravitate toward.
So, whether you are an extrovert and desire large amounts of social stimulation or you are an introvert and feel the most alive in quieter settings, remember that you will shine no matter what light you gravitate toward.