In Defense of Introverts

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In today’s increasingly competitive world, a great amount of stress is placed upon being an extroverted, Type A individual.

Naturally, for most job companies, extroverts are excellent assets: they are quick decision-makers, sociable workers, and natural leaders. Because these positive attributes are accepted as valuable within the working world, educators place an emphasis on their students to strive to be extroverts.

We are constantly told that being an extrovert means success. An outgoing person is not only more likely to be hired, but also more likely to be accepted in general.However, where does this leave introverts?

A lot of the time, we introverts feel overwhelmed by the thought that we will not be appreciated simply because being social does not come as easily to us. I will put this out there right now: I am an introvert, and it is not easy. Introverts usually feel anxious in social situations, which can lead to feelings of insecurity and inferiority especially when we are told that we must engage in social activities in order to be accepted or to succeed. Don’t get me wrong, extroverts are awesome, and introverts often admire them, and even try to emulate their friendliness.

However, when you are reserved, it makes interactions much more difficult. But that does not at all mean that introverts are not equally as valuable as extroverts are in the working sphere. In fact, I think educators should emphasize what great assets introverts are as well. We may not make quick decisions, but we do make very thoughtful ones, even if it takes a bit more time. We are excellent listeners, creative, and social once we get to know people.

Introverts are largely misunderstood as antisocial or cold people who are unfriendly and unwilling to meet new people. Not true: we are just more reserved, but, by all means, snap us out of it – we want to know you better, but might not know how to approach you or how to begin a conversation without feeling uncomfortable.

Companies need both extroverts and introverts to keep a good balance – and if educators taught students that important lesson, then there would be a hell of a lot more confident introverts. After all, there is nothing shameful about being introverted.

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