For years I have argued – often unsuccessfully – that I am an introvert. People see the version of me I present to the world – confident, articulate, a good conversationalist – and leap to judgment. They assume that makes me an extrovert.
The stereotypes of extroverts and introverts don’t go away! People think an extrovert is the life of the party and an introvert is a hermit. In fact, we introverts enjoy socializing. It’s just that interactions with our fellow human beings use our energy rather than fueling it. We think to talk, so keeping up with the conversation requires a lot of energy as we have to speed up that process.
That’s hard to do for more than an hour or two. But we do it to be social and to be seen as good at our jobs. We do it because others ask us to. We are accommodating. And I think many of us end up apologizing, if not to others than to ourselves, for not wanting to interact all the time.
I didn’t get this – or understand myself – until developing the Asking Styles. Once I realized I was a Kindred Spirit (intuitive introvert) life was so much clearer and I felt so much better about myself. It was truly an aha moment.
These past two months have provided an even bigger aha moment. I am living alone in an apartment spending virtually all day and night by myself, and I find I am fine with that. In fact, I have a level of energy I never had before. All the energy I usually expend interacting with people, whether professionally or personally, I find I now have for myself.
I am enjoying all my solitary activities. I take lots of walks by myself, take virtual yoga classes, do countless crossword and jigsaw puzzles, listen to music (and sing along!), write, and more. I find I am quite entertained.
Professionally, I’ve been able to channel all my newfound energy into finishing my second book, creating new electronic courses, and overall having the bandwidth to think more strategically.
It doesn’t mean I don’t miss being with friends and family. It doesn’t mean I don’t miss being hugged.
It does mean I’m going to be more careful going forward to carve out the time I need to recharge.
And it means I can now fully embrace my introvert. I hope my fellow introverts will do the same…and stop apologizing and accommodating!
What’s your Asking Style? Are you an extrovert (Rainmakers and Go-Getters) or an introvert (Kindred Spirits and Mission Controllers)? Take three minutes to find out: https://askingmatters.com/find-your-style/