Why introverts get supporting roles - Introvert Spring

Being an introvert is not synonymous with being a wallflower.  Despite what Hollywood might tell you, introverts can be heroes.  We can be leading ladies and knights in shining armor.  We don’t always have to play the part of “supporting character”, “best friend”, or “doormat”. We are capable of taking the lead role and making it our own.

In real life, we should always be the heroes and heroines of our own stories.

I’ve noticed that many introverts (myself included) tend to shrink to let others shine.  Because we don’t like to live in the spotlight, we forget that we too deserve to be heroes.

Being the observant people that we are, we are aware that others might think less of us because we don’t “sell’ ourselves enough.  We are often underestimated because we seldom toot our own horn (in conversation, anyway).

Many of us become the friend who always listens but is never heard.  We nod and congratulate, knowing all the while that the favor will never be returned.  In short, we accept the supporting role.  We become that loveable, but forgettable, character who is only there to support the star – the one who gets all the crappy lines like, “holy rusted metal batman!”

Worse still, our disdain for conflict can lead us dangerously close to the borderline between being agreeable and being a doormat.  It’s easy to allow the overpowering opinions of others (who are much more vocal about said opinions) to drown out our own quiet voice.  “No, I don’t mind that you’re completely self-absorbed and don’t give a damn about what’s happening in my life. Keep talking. I’m here for you.”

The thing is, no hero in the history of myths, fairytales and B-list Hollywood movies has ever been a doormat.  In the rare case that a protagonist is a doormat, the narrative is built around her overcoming her spinelessness (i.e. Bridget Jones’s Diary).

If you are the leading lady (or man) that I know you are, don’t accept a role that is beneath you.  What I mean is, don’t allow others to have all the glory.  Don’t shrink so they can shine.  Don’t be less than you are because your fabulousness looks different than theirs.

If you find yourself constantly in the midst of people who make you feel inferior, maybe you’re part of the wrong cast.  When you’re with the right people, there is enough spotlight for everyone.  True friends let you be a hero because they know you will return the favor.

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