Don't think of introversion as something that needs to be cured...Spend your free the way you like, not the way you think you're supposed to.
What's so magical about solitude? In many fields, Ericsson told me, it's only when you're alone that you can engage in Deliberate Practice, which he has identified as the key to exceptional achievement. When you practice deliberately, you identify the tasks or knowledge that are just out of your reach, strive to upgrade your performance, monitor your progress, and revise accordingly. Practice sessions that fall short of this standard are not only less useful - they're counterproductive. They reinforce existing cognitive mechanisms instead of improving them.
A Manifesto for Introverts 1. There's a word for 'people who are in their heads too much': thinkers. 2. Solitude is a catalyst for innovation. 3. The next generation of quiet kids can and must be raised to know their own strengths. 4. Sometimes it helps to be a pretend extrovert. There will always be time to be quiet later. 5. But in the long run, staying true to your temperament is key to finding work you love and work that matters. 6. One genuine new relationship is worth a fistful of business cards. 7. It's OK to cross the street to avoid making small talk. 8. 'Quiet leadership' is not an oxymoron. 9. Love is essential; gregariousness is optional. 10. 'In a gentle way, you can shake the world.' -Mahatma Gandhi
So the next time you see a person with a compose face and a soft voice, remember that inside her mind she might be solving an equation, composing a sonnet, designing a hat. She might, that is, be deploying the powers of quiet.
The key to flow is to pursue an activity for its own sake, not for the rewards it brings.
Because conflict-avoidant Emily would never “bite” or even hiss unless Greg had done something truly horrible, on some level she processes his bite to mean that she’s terribly guilty—of something, anything, who knows what?
Many people believe that introversion is about being antisocial, and that's really a misperception. Because actually it's just that introverts are differently social. So they would prefer to have a glass of wine with a close friend as opposed to going to a loud party full of strangers.
A widely held, but rarely articulated, belief in our society is that the ideal self is bold, alpha, gregarious. Introversion is viewed somewhere between disappointment and pathology.
You can't pick up a business magazine ever without seeing the word 'collaborate' splashed all over it. I think people are probably feeling assaulted by the need to always be on and always be interacting.
The bias against introversion leads to a colossal waste of talent, energy, and happiness.
I prefer listening to talking, reading to socializing, and cozy chats to group settings.
In most job interviews, people say they are looking for people skills and emotional intelligence. That's reasonable, but the question is, how do you define what that looks like?
To some extent, we've always had an admiration for extroversion in our culture. But the extrovert ideal really came to play at the turn of the 20th century when we had the rise of big business.
In a way, education by its nature favours the extrovert because you are taking kids and putting them into a big classroom, which is automatically going to be a high-stimulation environment. Probably the best way of teaching in general is one on one, but that's not something everyone can afford.
Most people who have grown up introverted in this very extroverted culture of ours have had painful experiences of feeling like they are out of step with what's expected of them. Parenting can pose unique challenges for introverted parents, who fear that their own painful experiences will be repeated in their children's lives.
It's important for a parent to learn to take delight in a child whose behavior might seem mystifying. In the case of an extroverted parent with an introverted child, it can be learning to see the inner riches of your child that may not always be expressed on the surface - but are there.
In our society, the ideal self is bold, gregarious, and comfortable in the spotlight. We like to think that we value individuality, but mostly we admire the type of individual who's comfortable 'putting himself out there.'
I think the shyness one feels in childhood is often overcome with time. There are children who hide behind their parents' legs, but you don't see grown-ups hiding behind people. It just doesn't happen. I mean, not that often. People develop social skills over time.
Shyness is about the fear of social judgments - at a job interview or a party you might be excessively worried about what people think of you. Whereas an introvert might not feel any of those things at all, they simply have the preference to be in a quieter setting.
Even when the attention focused on me is positive, I am uncomfortable being looked at by a lot of people - it's just not my natural state of being.