An Introvert might feel out of place in this extroverted World.
At times, it was challenging to grow up in a world where 2/3 of the people are extroverts. My family is filled with extroverts, and I felt at odds with myself growing up surrounded by outgoing people.
If you feel like you might be an Introvert, remember:
The most important thing for you to remember is that there is nothing wrong with being an Introvert.
And to the dear extroverts who would love to “help us” – no there is nothing we can do to change so we become extroverts. We are the way we are, and that is very much ok. Nothing needs to be fixed; it’s nothing we will outgrow; there’s nothing we need to change or get used to.
All we introverts have to do is accept ourselves just the way we are. Once we accept ourselves, the outer world will accept us, too. Once we are comfortable with the way we are, we are comfortable with the world around us.
Here are some traits common to Introverts:
- Craving alone time (Solitude)
- Feeling overwhelmed in groups
- Avoiding small talk
- Feeling misunderstood
- Preferring to watch people over talking to people
- Processing feelings, rather than talking about them (deep thinkers)
- Feeling drained by or alone in crowds
- Having small groups of close friends
- Being quiet, shy, and reserved
- Having been labeled as weird, or being told that you need to come out of your shell
There are many more people JUST LIKE YOU out there – and you do NOT have to fit all!
I’d like to share a little bit of my story, and how it felt for me to be an introvert in an extroverted world.
I remember feeling a bit out of place at primary school. I had two very close friends – friends I felt comfortable with – who moved away. Later, I had a hard time connecting to others. (In Switzerland, the class remains pretty much the same throughout primary years, unlike in the US, where the classes get mixed up every year).
I realised that I was different, and I wanted to fit in.
During my teens, I was shy and had a low self-esteem, as I did not quite feel connected to anyone or anything.
My two sisters went to parties and had many friends. They were out all of the time. I didn’t feel comfortable at parties but felt that I should go – but I ended up feeling awkward, unlike my popular and extroverted sisters who actually enjoyed going to parties. I realised, that being in a group made me feel odd and tired.
I loved to read and I loved to daydream. I also loved to be outdoors, to go for bike rides or to skate with my roller blades.
Later, in early adulthood, I had some friends who I felt close to. Of course, once I became a mother, I was happy to just be with my babies.
My nature as an introvert followed me into adulthood – I felt like the odd one out at the local Moms and Toddlers group. Perhaps, though, that was because I had lived abroad and later moved to a new area in Switzerland.
It wasn’t a problem for me to move around the world with my family, as I never had any close friends that I left behind. Integrating into new countries was considerably hard, though. Alas, I felt that is just how it is.
Yes, I do have some friends, and yes, I can be in a group. I have a handful of very close friends; people whom I deeply trust and whom I feel I can just be myself around.
Sometimes I feel lonely, but then whenever I am tired or down, all I want is quiet time. I feel best out in nature, just by myself.
I have a hard time talking to others. I prefer writing, and I am more of a thinker than a speaker.
I love hiking and nature, and I thought about joining a hiking group. Alas, I realized that I feel more comfortable on my own, than I do if I have to talk to get to know new people. Also, when I am in nature, I love quiet and I love solitude. So for me, joining a hiking group would deprive me of the quality time nature brings me.
I am also an Empath, and I pick up the emotions of others. (I will write more about this in my next blog post), and I often can’t pinpoint if my discomfort comes from being an introvert or if it comes from being an Empath.
Common myths about introverts:
- We need to be fixed
- We will grow out of it
- We are arrogant, rude. This is misinterpreted shyness.
- We don’t like people. We have a select few true friends.
- We don’t like to go out. We just don’t go out for long, as we need to recharge
- We are depressed. Some of us are just content with quietness.
- We are stupid. Most of us have a fountain of wisdom within.
How can you help your introverted child?
My oldest child is an introvert. Yes, I worried over him, even though I fully understood where he was coming from. My other two children are social butterflies, and sometimes very tiring to us introverts ;-)
If you like to learn more about Indigo Children, you can get your copy of my E-book here
If your child is an introvert:
- First of all, accept him/her just the way he/she is.
- Make dinner table conversation interesting and engage the introvert as well.
- Acknowledge your introverted child. Encourage the child to go out, but don’t force the issue.
- Do not compare your child to others.
- Go out in nature with your child – there’s no need to talk.
- Enjoy just being with your child.
*A bit of a warning, though. If your usually happy and outgoing child is suddenly withdrawn, don’t interpret this as introversion. Seek medical help or talk to the school counselors, as a sudden change in character can signal an issue.
I hope this blog has helped you to understand introverts a bit better. While we introverts should learn to accept ourselves, it is always great to know the extroverts understand our needs and tendencies. It is great that we are all equal and still so different ;-)
I appreciate the full spectrum of humans – from colours to dispositions.
I have also written a post about how it is to be an Empath. Do you think that Empaths and Introverts are similar in nature?
Do you feel like you are an Introvert, or an Empath?
Do you feel like sometimes it is hard for you to make connections, or feel like you belong?
Then come join my FB Group Open Hearted Sisterhood
and connect with other women who get you.