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All About Introverts
Inside the world of an introvert
The quiet girl, the shy girl, yes that was me. You could call me whatever you like but I would say the term introvert would suit me the best. I was inspired to write this Hub as I was reading last months issue of Psychology Today. The cover story titled "Revenge of the Introverts" really stood out to me. It was the first article I read in the magazine. As I was reading it, it reminding me of myself. I always knew I was an introvert and how perfectly normal it was, however, some never really got that. As I read, I found myself thinking "that's me!" to a lot of what it was saying. And when I finished reading it, I felt very confident about myself and very proud to be an introvert.
Why judge me? I am not begging for your attention, your approval, or your judgement. Instead, my mind is at work. I am focused on my own thoughts rather than the thoughts of others. Yes, I never blended in with the craziness of others, rather, I stood alone. While some may take it that I wasn't cool enough to be with them, truth is, I didn't want to be with them and even if I had the chance to be a part of a certain "cool" group, I, most definitely, would not take it; I can guarantee that. That is what an introvert is all about. Whispers, jokes, no they don't bother me. I am a leader, not a follower. I am an introvert.
What is an introvert?
Introverts are often classified under the same category of those who are considered to be shy, nerdy, or even antisocial. Yes, introverts may come off this way, however, it is important to mention that there is a distinction between being an introvert and simply being shy. For example, if you place both someone who is shy and someone who is an introvert in a party of some sort, you will most likely find both of them standing against the wall. Both are there for different reasons though. The shy person may want to join the rest of the party, however, is too shy to do so. The introvert, on the other hand, is standing there because he or she does not want to join the rest of the party. Being wild and loud are not what entertains an introvert; it's just not a part of their nature. An introvert much rather be sitting back reading a good book. This does not mean introverts do not know how to communicate, in fact, introverts are very intelligent, perhaps it is because education is their main focus because it involves using the mind.
The opposite: extroverts
Non-stop socializing, spotlight seeking, being the life of the party, these are common traits found within those who are considered to be extroverts. Unlike introverts, extroverts would hate nothing more than to be standing against the wall at a party. They want everyone to know who they are. Extroverts are often the "popular" or "cool" ones in school. Extroverts are not bad people, they are just different from introverts. They have different needs and are satisfied differently than that of introverts. Ultimately, extroverts are all about socialization; it is what they crave and often use as their mechanism to get what they want.
Introverts and Extroverts
It is quite easy to spot the introverts among the extroverts. There is a common misconception, however, when it comes to the number of both introverts and extroverts. This misconception is that the number of extroverts outnumber that of introverts. This is not so, the reason as to why this occurs is because extroverts are easier to find. Extroverts are always going to stand out simply because of the fact that they are sociable people. Of course they will seem like what is the norm. Truth is, there is a relatively equal amount of introverts and extroverts. Introverts just don't make it seen. Of course we are going to notice those in the spotlight and ignore the rest.
People also tend to like extroverts more than introverts because they are more open and willing to talk to people. Introverts want to get to know people before they open up to them.
Extroverts tend to act on impulse rather than thinking things through first like introverts do. Introverts take decisions more seriously. This does not necessarily make extroverts irresponsible, it is just they are more willing to try things to see if they work while introverts think it over in their head to see if it would work.
Lastly, extroverts receive more satisfaction from external sources and introverts receive more satisfaction from internal sources. This means that extroverts satisfy their social needs by talking to others and making themselves known. Introverts can satisfy their social needs by thoughts in their heads. This can be done by turning to writing as an example.
What to expect from an introvert
Some important aspects of introverts to take into consideration when dealing with them are the following.
1. Don't treat them differently than others-People are all the same, some are just more quiet than others. Treating introverts like they are from another planet is not the way to go. Many introverts, especially those in school, are often made fun of for being "nerdy" and, therefore, they are made fun of or bullied. What would make introverts out of the norm? That would mean that extroverts are just as weird then.
2. Don't overestimate them-Just because they do not contribute many different thoughts, does not mean they have the correct answer to everything.
3. Don't underestimate them-This can also be flipped around. Just because they are not contributing to a discussion, does not make them stupid. They may have an opinion, a very intelligent opinion, but they just don't feel like sharing it. Don't force it out of them, give it time.
4. Give them the chance, but don't force it-Always give an introvert the option of joining in something, but don't make them feel obligated. (Trust me, we can't stand it).
5. Don't ask them to be like extroverts-You can't ask someone to be different. Accept introverts for who they are and don't try to change them to be more like extroverts. It will not only be unsuccessful but it will make them angry. Accept us introverts for who we are!
Message to introverts
If you are an introvert like me, be proud of yourself. There is nothing wrong with you and there are plenty out there just like you. Be proud of who you are. You think things over and don't want to blend in with others just because it is the "cool" thing to do. Don't feel you have to change for anyone! Enjoy being your introvert self!