Like many of you, I have learned a lot of valuable life lessons over the years. Several of these lessons are closely related to introversion. Here are the top ten truths I’ve discovered:
1. Happiness is not achieved in more. More money, more stuff and more popularity will only lead to wanting even more. In fact, when you are truly happy, you want less. Shiny new toys loose their luster quickly, but inner peace has no shelf life.
2. A few close friends are enough. True friends are hard to come by. Even if you only have one real friend, that is more valuable than 100 acquaintances.
3. “Often we don’t even realize who we’re meant to be because we’re so busy trying to live out someone else’s ideas. But other people and their opinions hold no power in defining our destiny.” ~ Oprah Winfrey
You don’t have to care what others think. This is way easier said than done, but it is an incredibly powerful principle. Recognizing that you don’t need to prove yourself to others allows you to be who you were meant to be.
4. It’s okay to want to be alone sometimes. Other people will not always understand this. What matters most is that you understand and honor your own needs.
5. Not everyone will appreciate your quiet nature. That’s okay. Never change for anyone. The moment you feel like you need to prove yourself to someone, it’s time to reconsider the relationship.
6. Quiet confidence is an immensely powerful quality. It is respectable, mysterious, magnetic and demure. If you possess this characteristic, you will be able to convey volumes about your character without saying a word.
7. You should choose people and environments that fit you, not the other way around. If your ‘friends’ are always trying to change you, change friends. If the places you frequent leave you feeling drained and unhappy, don’t go there anymore. It’s as simple as that.
8. You don’t have to say a lot to get your message across. Say more with less. Infuse your sentences with more meaning instead of more words.
9. “Those who follow the crowd usually get lost in it.”~Rick Warren
Trying to fit in is the best way to inhibit your true potential. Great people do not fit the mold. They are strange. They rebel against societal norms. As outsiders, they thoughtfully observe the world and all its beautiful shades of grey. They recognize that nothing is black and white, or two-dimensional. They don’t just break the mold – they smash it to pieces and never look back.
10. Sometimes the only way to get what you want is to ask for it. This can be difficult for introverts. It requires a mixture of vulnerability and bravery. Finding the right words is the first challenge. Then we must force them out before we chicken out, or get interrupted. Live the Nike mantra and Just Do It.