The Power Of An Introvert

6:29 PM

The Power Of An Introvert

The Power Of An Introvert

For years I was trying to find my place in the "social world". I don't understand why growing up, I don't enjoy large crowds or parties or group activities as people my age were. It was confusing that I found going out, partying, meeting new people and trying to socialize more boring than when I am home curled up in a corner reading a book or watching a movie. But there is power in being an introvert.

Labeled as a nerd or geek, weirdo, naive, spoilsport, boring or even a snob didn't bother me that much because I was and still am happy and comfortable with myself. 

I once tried to go with the majority thinking maybe I really was missing something or I have had a personal issue I needed to deal with. 

So, I went out and partied and tried to move in a fast pace just to keep up with everyone else and see if the grass is really greener on the other side of the fence. 

No luck. 

I found loud music, disco lights and parties in general shallow and boring. Really, I can sleep right in the middle of the party out of boredom. Yes, that sounds weird but everyone has quirks and that's mine.

Then I came across a word that describes me best: introvert. According to science, introverts are people who are over-sensitive to Dopamine, so too much external stimulation overdoses and exhausts them.  

Their counterpart, the extroverts on the other hand, cant get enough Dopamine and so their brains require Adrenaline--- the hormone that's responsible for the increase in heart rate, pulse rate and blood pressure.  Needless to say, extroverts are "out there", gregarious and the life of the party while introverts become more alive and switched on in the wilderness.  

According to Susan Cain, a Wall Street lawyer and a self proclaimed introvert, introversion is more on how to react to a stimuli.  She said it is often mistook for shyness which is the fear of social judgment but they are different. 

The problem with our society is that institutions like schools and workplaces are designed for extroverts. In school or in the office, you are forced to work with a group even on tasks that you can and would rather work alone on.  

According to Adam Grant, introverts make better leaders because they deliver better outcomes by letting their members run with their ideas unlike extroverts who tends to get too excited with their ideas.

There are many great leaders who are introverts like Gandhi and Eleanor Roosevelt who lead not because they want to but because, as Susan Cain puts it, they are driven to do what they thought was right.

Check Susan Cain's video here.

We often hear that we can find true wisdom and peace only in solitude and silence. Even in the Bible, God spoke to Moses when He was alone. God spoke to Elijah in the calmness. 

Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper --- 1 King 19: 11-12 

Sometimes I find it unfair when people force me to go out and tell me to have a break or let loose or relax a little bit and have some fun because I am having fun!  It may not appear as so because I don't move around and talk a lot but it is in the quiet that I am more comfortable and happy. This is where I thrive and where I find my bliss. It may not seem much, but to me, it's everything.

Don't get me wrong though. It's not that I hate extroverts or I'm anti-social or that I'm an agoraphobic. In fact most of my friends are "socially active" and we have tons of fun when we're together. Carl Jung, a psychological theorist said extroversion and introversion are typically viewed as a single continuum. According to Carl Jung:

No one is a pure introvert or a pure extrovert. Jung compared the two processes to the heartbeat-there is a rhythmic alternation between the cycle of contraction (introversion) and the cycle of expansion (extroversion). However, each individual tends to favor one or the other attitude and operates more often in terms of the favored attitude. Introverts see the world in terms of how it affects them, and extroverts are more concerned with their impact upon the world.

So balance is the key. I wish I can say that I am an ambivert and I live in euphoria but I cant. I am and I think will always be primarily "inward-oriented".  

Still, I think I am blessed that I know my strengths and I embrace my flaws that I don't need to try and fit in so that people will approve of me or accept me as I am. I have a gift. I am special. I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I am rare. I am exquisite. I am an introvert.  

I don't shout it out. I just revel on it and continue to watch the world get amazed on how my gentleness and quietude can change lives one hush conversation at a time.

Photos from Google images

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