We’re the kind of people who see someone we know at the grocery store and duck behind the fruits in hopes they won’t see us and say hello.
We’re the kind of people who make plans for the weekend and come Friday night –
hope they might be canceled.
And it’s okay. It is. There is no need to be apologetic or feel guilty for wanting to cancel (something I still struggle with) because you need a little time to yourself. Some of us would rather be curled up with a book on the weekend than go out to a party. This is the way our brains are hardwired, and there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, maybe as an INFP myself I’m a little biased, I think being an introvert is actually an advantage. No disrespect or hate to the extroverts — we love you. Your outgoing, love-to-be-around-people attitudes challenge us and get us out of our Netflix-binging comfort zones. But let’s face it introverts – we are the minority. And that’s why we are awesome.
If you’re reading this so far and you’re like, “what the heck is an introvert?” Feel free to check out the Myers and Briggs Foundation and take the test for free here and find out what kind of personality traits you have! Honestly, once I understood more about why I respond to certain situations the way I do, it all made more sense and becoming self-aware has helped me grow as a person!
One thing I want to stress:
Extroversion does not simply mean “outgoing”, and introversion does not simply mean “shy”.
You can be a shy extrovert, and you can be an outgoing introvert.
Which to me, is actually pretty cool. It’s crazy how many different kinds of people are out there – who we interact with every day! But my fellow introverts, this one is for you. Here’s what makes our hiding-in-the-corner at a party, ‘please don’t call on me in class’, personalities so great.
1. We are great listeners.
First and foremost – we are great listeners. And I don’t mean this to sound cocky or anything – it’s just true! We are the kind of people who actually hope other people will do the talking, so as a result, we are bound to be decent listeners.
2. We make great leaders.
So maybe we aren’t the first ones to jump at the opportunity to lead a group or take the reins in a work situation – but we still excel in leadership roles! Especially if we have an extrovert to counter balance us. Introverts tend to make connections with people one-on-one at first, which can be a huge advantage in a group setting. You are taking the time to get to know someone and understand how they work best, which is only further enhancing the overall success of the group!
3. People come to us for advice – because we are so dang observant.
Because we often keep to ourselves, we spend a lot of time observing situations. I remember in high school, I was always the single friend, but my girlfriends would come to me for relationship advice – which looking back at it now, makes a lot of sense! I had the ‘outside looking in’ viewpoint, and sometimes that can be invaluable when seeking advice or a second opinion.
4. We don’t get bored.
Okay, maybe that’s not 100% true – because as human beings, we all get bored sometimes, right? But as an introvert, (and I’ve actually known a few extroverts to be this way as well), we don’t have a problem with just…being. When a friend asks me to hang out, I don’t have a problem with just sitting on the couch. Sometimes, going out to a movie or shopping actually sounds exhausting. However, introverts don’t need constant social stimulation.
5. We remember everything.
It’s a blessing and a curse. Combine our listening skills with our being observant, and we remember just about everything you tell us. This can be great in a friendship, because no one wants to repeat themselves, or feel like a friend wasn’t actually listening to first time around. But, in other situations, it can be our achilles heel – because we don’t forget – and that goes for nice and mean situations.
6. We can be the voice of reason.
As introverts, if we can help it, we prefer a small, intimate, group setting rather than a large crowd. Which means, we are (depending on the people around us), less likely to be involved in dramatic or intense situations. This allows us to be the voice of reason for our friends, because by not engaging, we have a calmer, fresh, perspective, and can listen to both sides of a story.
If there’s anything you take away from this, introverts, I hope it’s that even though the idea of small talk makes us wanna die, we have some great qualities that friends and potential spouses look for. And, well, we really are awesome.