Many introverts have received the message that they need to change. We’ve been told that introversion is not the norm. It’s strange to be quiet. It’s weird to want to stay home alone on a Saturday night. And it’s downright unimaginable that we could like people and still not want to be around them 24/7.
Negative feedback causes introverts to feel shame about our introversion. One of the most common comments I receive from followers is “I thought there was something wrong with me.” They are surprised and relieved to discover that there are many other people like them – that, perhaps, there is nothing wrong with them after all. Then comes the hard part.
For most introverts, it took several years of conditioning to come to loath our introversion. Learning to accept it won’t happen overnight. It might even be painful at first, like ripping off a grimy old band-aid that’s been on for way too long. But it’s absolutely worth it.
There are so many benefits to loving our introversion. One of the number one goals of this blog is to help people to do just that. In case you didn’t get the message from my other pro-introversion posts (ie. all of them), here are a few more reasons to love your introversion:
It makes you more awesome
Being naturally introspective and reflective is like having a built-in mechanism for self-improvement. It helps us to grow.
Looking inward requires solitude. Many people don’t like solitude because they are afraid to face difficult truths about themselves. As Deepak Chopra puts it:
“To make the right choices in life, you have to get in touch with your soul. To do this, you need to experience solitude, which most people are afraid of, because in silence you hear the truth and know the solutions.”
As introverts, we are innately drawn to solitude and the wisdom found therein. When we embrace our introversion, we reap the fruits of solitude. Emotional intelligence increases. Ideas proliferate. Creativity soars.
It makes the world a better place
When we love our introversion, we are able to unleash our greatest gifts. It is through the use of these gifts that we make the world a better place.
There are far too many introverts in this world who aren’t reaching their fullest potential because they are too busy trying to be extroverts. I know because I was one of them. I was so focused on improving my supposed weaknesses that I neglected my greatest strengths – all of which are closely tied to my introversion. Now I see that I have so much more to offer the world when I stay true to my introverted nature.
It opens doors
One of the reasons that introverts fear our introversion is that we think embracing our true nature will close doors. We believe that job opportunities will pass us by. Potential friendships will be lost. Adventures will be missed. But this is only true if we buy into the myth that introversion is a handicap. The only doors that will close when we embrace our introversion are the ones that would lead to self-imprisonment.
Maya Angelou once said:
“Love liberates. It doesn’t hold. That’s ego. Love liberates.”
Loving your introversion is one of the most liberating things you can do for yourself. It liberates you to your true calling. It liberates you to love. And it liberates you to your best possible life.
In case you’re interested, here is the full version of what Maya Angelou had to say about liberating love:
Marvelous article… Simply beautiful. Thank You Michaela. 🙂
After being criticised my entire life for who I am, and being made to feel there was something wrong with me, it has been such a revelation these past few months to read about Introverts & my Myer Briggs personality type. I am FINALLY understanding me. Despite a lifetime of being told otherwise, there has never been anything wrong with me! I am an introvert and an INFJ. It has been so freeing, because even well meaning people would try and get me “out of my shell” or “be more social.” None of them saw how physically draining it is for me to interact with people, and the down time I need after doing so. I am just so very grateful to all the people sharing this information. I no longer am trying to change who I am, or feel bad about myself. I have felt bad about myself my entire life!! I am now being more assertive about my need for time alone, and that it is normal and necessary for me. I finally like me, and have no desire to change or defend myself. It is others who have to learn to accept me for who I am, and if they can’t, well that is their problem, not mine. I can also help my introverted children to understand how awesome they are and to ignore the people who say otherwise. Thank you Michaela, you have helped me ENORMOUSLY. 🙂 <3
Beautiful and encouraging your blogs are. I have always felt weird being INFJ. Everybody thought I was an extravert because I am expressive and am able to make jokes in group settings. Quickly after I had to recharge by myself, where others would continue to remain in the group. My whole life I thought something was wrong with me. That I needed to become more social and go out more often. I thought it was pathetic to stay in on a Saturday night. That it made me dull and so not cool. Now and then people call me grandma because I prefer to go to bed on time.
I am learning to love myself the way I am. That in itself makes me cool and authentic.
So thanks and keep on writing:) I enjoy being part of the Innie tribe!
Much love from the Netherlands
Its nice to know its not just Me! Now what? I work Hard in a factory,and am Single Father of 4 . I have 2 Sons 13 and 25yrs also 2 Daughters 16 and 20yrs. Never enough Energy or Time to Recharge. Not sure how to take Advantage of my introversion and can’t seem to download the Energy Article??