To the surprise of friends and family, many of us are introverts. We happen to be the most creative when we’re alone, focused when alone, productive when alone, meditative when alone, the list goes on…
Are you an introvert also? How do you balance your introversion with the interaction and connection you still need from the outside world? Here are my top 4 tips to maximize your innate personality while still staying connected to those around you.
1. Learn Your Lingo
Dig deeper into your introversion. Do a little reading or maybe watch a video about the definition and characteristics that make up an introverted individual. Susan Cain delivers a great speech about the power of introverts. Watch here
By learning the right vocabulary and terms for explaining this personality trait, you can communicate and describe to others what your needs are. For example, telling a friend that you are too tired to socialize or a co-worker that you don’t like people constantly visiting your workspace to chat, doesn’t help them connect to your primary needs. Instead, test out different ways of telling people the kind of social and professional environment you prefer. See which one people connect the most to and be assertive in getting your needed space.
2. Maximize your Alone Time
It’s said that the less decisions you have to make during your day, the less you stress.
Identify all the ways you recharge and know your top three. In a world where you have to interact with people, attend events, and engage with social media to build relationships or create opportunities, you want to maximize the time you have to yourself. Sometimes, all it takes is creating a perfect day to yourself to get errands off of your list, gather new ideas for projects, put to action short terms goals, and unwind.
Also, find a handful of activities that you love doing alone and do at least one every day. Sometimes it’s waking up 30 minutes earlier and enjoying some coffee on your patio, doing a sweaty workout during lunch, or meditating for 10 minutes before bed. Whatever it is, carve out a corner of time to yourself everyday no matter how busy you get.
3. Targeted Extraverting
Everyone has an extroverted quality in them, but those who are primarily introverted will be more sensitive to the type of interaction, environment, and length of time in which they are out and about.
Knowing what kinds of activities, people, and environment bring the best out of you will help you choose what events to attend and which ones to decline.
Find events that are during the time of day where you are the most energetic, research ahead of time to see what people will be there and possibly even choose a few that you will target and make sure to speak to, and give yourself a time limit in which you will leave no matter what. Plan a dinner after with a close friend to unwind and share your experience with or plan to go home and watch a movie.
Use the same mindset for social activities or group events with friends. Most likely, there are only a few people you truly want to catch up with and so make sure you sit with them at the dinner table or let them know ahead of time that you’re going to be there as well. All it takes is a little pre-meditation and knowing that you have full control over your time out to enjoy yourself and be with the people that make you happy and whole.
4. The Danger of Keeping Ideas to Yourself
Many great leaders are introverted geniuses and the time they spend alone generates the incredible ideas and visions that they put to action. But the reason that they become successful actual organizations or products is the fact that they take it out of their heads and into the world.
Whether it’s a business idea, a new goal, or even just an interaction with a friend that bothers you, be sure to take them out of your head and to the right people. Getting concrete feedback on the amazing or misguided things that happen in your mind will help you de-clutter and strengthen the best out of the bunch. Talk about it to friends, post about it on your social media to get feedback, and test out your work by releasing out a few different ideas and seeing the reactions to each.
Learn more about what keeps you balanced, motivated, and excited about your day. The more you know about yourself, the more relaxed and positive you will be no matter what situation you find yourself in.