3 Common Myths About Introversion And The Truth Behind Them

 / 

Common Myths About Introversion

There are many myths associated with introversion even today, and debunking those myths will help everyone understand introverts and their personalities better, instead of judging them and assuming things about them.

Ever since the terms introversion and extroversion became common, the generally accepted view was that extroverts were the “positives” – they appeared confident, commanding, popular, happy, full of ideas, and successful.

Along with this cultural norm, came the view that introverts by definition must be the opposite of extroverts. We were the UN-extrovert.

So if individuals, teams, companies, and cultures believe introversion is the opposite of extroversion, they must also embody the opposite adjectives; thus, introverts have been defined as those with low self-esteem, soft, unpopular, sad, uncreative, and unsuccessful. Many of these adjectives are still recognized in dictionaries and thesauruses today!

These horrible monikers have been attached to introversion in reference books, but worse yet to people’s thinking. Many extroverts steer away from introverts as friends, teammates, or new hires because of this stigma. Some introverts succumb to these descriptors themselves, often becoming dejected or depressed.

Thus, it may come as a surprise to extroverts and many introverts as well, that we are NOT opposites. We all live on a continuum and each of us has various areas of comfort. Someone may relate most to the introvert label, but this doesn’t mean we carry any of the labels society and dictionaries suggest.

Introversion is a journey of discovery, learning, and strength. Some of us now know the real facts while for others it is time to shed the heavy burden, explore strengths, embrace introversion, and champion your amazing talents for the world.

Related: 10 Popular Myths About Introverts That Are Far From Truth

Let’s destroy three well-recognized myths and make new, bold statements here:

1) Introverts are social

We do enjoy being with people. We can put words together to form thoughtful and compelling sentences. We typically prefer small groups, shorter durations, and more familiar surroundings for our socializing. This is not because of some lack of confidence, but because more intimate atmospheres support building deeper, more interesting relationships.

I was on a podcast recently and after some lovely chitchat, before we went live, the hostess shared with her audience her surprise that I am indeed an introvert. We laughed about that and then had an engaging one-on-one discussion on introversion in the workplace, but these assumptions are common. It is up to us to tactfully and confidently debunk these myths.

We do enjoy and even need to socialize. We just need to do it our way. So when someone asserts that you are anti-social, correct them. “I am social in the right setting when I can do it my way! (or maybe I just don’t like you! 😉)

introversion

2) Introverts Do Make Great Leaders

Most workplaces seem dominated by extroverts. The fact is about half of society and therefore half of its members in schools, social groups, and workplaces, are introverts. Introverts tend to be quite “underrecognized” because we don’t toot our own horn or seek to demand attention. Leadership positions also appear to be dominated by extroverts, but here there is a lot of truth to that.

An Industrial Psychology study of over 4000 managers revealed that only 7% of frontline managers are introverts and a mere 2% of executives are introverts. However, let’s be clear, this is not due to capabilities or intellect, but due to extroverts overlooking the talents of introverts and some introverts themselves being skeptical or under-selling their skillset.

The days of the command and control style of management are thankfully gone. Companies recognize that doesn’t drive creativity, customer relationships building, or vibrant problem-solving. Meanwhile, the job market is strong with many small business and entrepreneurial opportunities that pose credible options for employees who demand respect, participation, and a voice in the workplace.

Today, customers and businesses actually demand resilience, creativity, balanced analysis and decision making, and thoughtful and motivational team building. These are indeed strengths of many introverts. Our time is now to flex our muscles and take the reigns of leadership. We don’t do this by changing ourselves, but by being ourselves!

Related: Why Introverts Make Great Leaders? 9 Science-Backed Reasons

3) Introverts Are Ambitious

In the fable about the tortoise and the hare, the rabbit may have appeared confident and poised for victory, but the fact is the turtle was calm, quiet, determined, and focused (sound familiar?). He just kept plodding along, undeterred by distractions as he surprised everyone and crossed the finish line first. Introverts embody that same approach as the tortoise.

Fighting all odds, introverts overcome perceptions and biases to achieve. These are often obstacles extroverts never have to confront or appreciate. For introverts to succeed in the face of such adversity is indeed ambitious. Like others, introverts have many dreams for themselves, their family, and their career. They could easily withdraw as the wallflower or loner that Thesaurus.com proclaims, but instead, our tremendous ambition drives us to overcome and succeed.

Introverts have the talents and tools to contribute. When combined with a determined mindset, there is no stopping us. Bill Gates, Eleanor Roosevelt, Warren Buffett, Rosa Parks, and Abraham Lincoln stand as examples of our superpowers, focus, and power.

We don’t have to be famous to make a difference, we just have to be ourselves and share our talents with the world around us.

Related: 9 Things Introverts Want You To Know

Call To Action

Years ago, if someone told me I could socialize, lead, and achieve my dreams I would have curled up in a ball, frozen from anxiety and fear. Don’t be afraid. For those earlier in your journey, it may seem like you are alone but you are part of an army of introverts. You already have the talent to socialize, lead and win. In fact, you are already doing it today!

Our task is to be ourselves, to educate and ease the path for others, and to bring our strengths to the forefront at community events and workplace meeting rooms. I’m not advocating a revolution, I’m suggesting we are part of the diversity and inclusiveness (D&I) wave across society. We have the opportunity to collaborate more with others to improve workplace relationships, decision-making, and problem-solving in order to deliver better for society, our customers, and ourselves.


Written By Steve Friedman
Originally Appeared In Beyond Introversion
Common Myths About Introversion pin

— Share —

— About the Author —

Leave a Reply



Up Next

“Why Do I Hate Talking On The Phone?”: 7 Signs You Might Be Dealing With Phone Anxiety

Why Do I Hate Talking On The Phone? Signs Of Phone Anxiety

Do you ever find yourself rolling your eyes and letting out an exasperated sigh when your phone starts ringing or buzzing? Do you feel dread at the mere thought of having to make or receive a phone call and try to find out how to avoid talking on the phone? If you’ve ever said these words to yourself, “Why do I hate talking on the phone?” with frustration, you’re not alone.

There are many people out there who feel the same as you, and hate talking on the phone. And it turns out, there’s a very valid reason behind feeling this way, and that’s phone anxiety.

Today, we are going to talk about phone anxiety and the signs you hate talking on the phone, so that the frequency of you asking “why do I hate talking on the phone” lessens. So, are you ready to know more about this? Let’s get started, then.



Up Next

How To Make An Introvert Miss You? 9 Simple But Thoughtful Things You Can Do

How To Make An Introvert Miss You? Charming Things To Do

If you are curious about the mysterious world of introverts and are wondering how to make an introvert miss you, then you have come to the right place, my friend. Today we are going to talk about how to tug at an introvert’s heartstrings and make them want to be with you.

Picture this: you’re sitting at home, wondering how to capture the attention of that introverted friend or crush. You want them to miss you and yearn for your presence just like you do. So, today I’m going to be your wing woman in navigating the art of captivating introverts.

Ready to know more about how to make an introvert miss you and some of the profound signs an introvert misses you? Let’s get started, then.

Related:



Up Next

The 8 Most Introverted MBTI Personality Types: Ranked From Most To Least

Most Introverted MBTI Personality Types: Most To Least

The MBTI personality types have always intrigued people, especially introverted people (I know because I am one!). Today we are going to talk about the most introverted MBTI personality types, and better still, we are going to rank them as per their level of introversion.

Let’s explore the most introverted personality types in the MBTI universe, and find out the secrets of these introverted people who find peace within their own selves and who flourish in their quiet worlds. Let’s get started, shall we?

Related:



Up Next

Supercharge Your Social Energy: The Ultimate Guide On How To Recharge Social Battery

Pro Tips On How To Recharge Social Battery And Revitalize

Do you find yourself mentally and emotionally drained after being around people, even if you like them? Do you often feel the need to rejuvenate yourself by spending some time alone? This happens when your ‘social battery’ is running low. What is a social battery and how to recharge social battery? Let’s find out.

What does Social Battery Actually Mean?

The idea of social battery refers to an individual’s ability to engage socially



Up Next

Why Introvert Extrovert Couples Make Great Parents: 8 Compelling Reasons

Reasons Introvert Extrovert Couples Make Great Parents

You know why introvert extrovert couples make great parents? They’re the perfect combination of yin and yang. Introvert extrovert couples work really well because where one person lacks, the other makes up in spades. And this approach reflects in their parenting skills as well. They have different ways of looking at things, and they give the best of both worlds to their children.

In this article, we are going to explore some of the major reasons why introvert extrovert couples make a powerful team when it comes to the battle of parenting their children.

So, if you are someone who is in an introvert and extrov



Up Next

The Introvert’s Guide To Confidence: How To Be A Confident Introvert

How To Be A Confident Introvert: A Step Guide

A confident introvert? Is that even a thing? Aren’t introverts supposed to be shy and meek? Well, no! Introverts can be highly confident, it’s just that the confidence introverts have is very different from that of extroverts. While they may still be shy and socially awkward, introverts can still be immensely confident in their abilities and skills. 

If you are an introvert, I am sure you have often preferred the solitude of being alone in the corner of a room than seeking attention in a party or in large crowds. I am sure you have felt misunderstood as people confused your peaceful and reserved nature for shyness or lack of confidence.

This is the story of most introverts. But does that mean introverts aren’t typically confident? Can introverts be confident? And how to be a confident introvert? We are going to explore all that a



Up Next

5 Reasons Why Introverts Go To Bed Early While Extroverts Stay Up

Reasons Why Introverts Go To Bed Early (Even If They're Not Sleepy)

Do you ever feel like the best part of your day is slipping into those comfy sheets early? Well, you’re not alone! Explore the five reasons behind why introverts go to bed early.

I know I’m not alone on this but bedtime isn’t just sleep for introverts. It’s the escape from a world of complete chaos. And diving into an early night isn’t something we regret — it’s a sweet haven that we secretly enjoy.

Sleeping early is a foreign concept to extroverts. The idea of it is ridiculous. “Why would I ever want to sleep so early when there’s always so much stuff going on?” They know that sleep is necessary, but they don’t want to get any.