9 Myths about Introverts
by Sonia Jamil
Shy, reserved, quiet, withdrawn, unsociable and arrogant are some adjectives that people use to describe introverts. We all know an introvert or might even be one. However, many myths surround introverts about their personalities, behaviors, opinions, and ideas. So here are a few myths that people should stop believing in.
1. Introverts are wallflowers
- Truth: They are reserved
- All shy people may be introverts but not all introverts are shy, they are just reserved. The difference between shyness and introversion is that shy people are hesitant to interact with people while, introverts choose not to interfere in other people’s matters unless it concerns them.
2. Introverts are lone wolves
- Truth: They enjoy solitude
- They prefer being alone because their personal space gives them the chance to think and recuperate. They don’t hate people, they prefer interacting one-on-one. Although introverts thrive in loneliness, a bit of socialization doesn’t hurt.
3. Introverts don't have friends
- Truth: They are selective
- Sometimes it’s a struggle to make new friends but that is only because introverts are selective in who they want as long-term companions. They may have one or two friends that they confide in and this is only relevant because they take time to open up to people.
4. Introverts are anti-social
- Truth: They are socially cautious
- At times introverts can come across to be arrogant and rude but in reality, it’s a misconception. They tend to keep to themselves around people they don’t usually know and if they know you they wouldn’t mind a little chit-chat. However, when it comes to opening up and sharing sentiments they take caution in entering the ‘emotional territory’.
5. Introverts lack self-esteem
- Truth: Sensitive but confident
- Being quiet and detached from people doesn’t necessarily signify a person to be an introvert. Truly, introverts are quiet and don’t tend to socialize often but it cannot be misjudged as poor self-confidence. Extroverts may also suffer from low self-esteem issues which may be apparent in different ways than an introvert.
6. Introverts are very quite people
- Truth: They speak if and when necessary
- While speaking whatever comes to mind and unnecessary questioning or answering aren’t traits that introverts possess, they often prefer to listen and understand before verbalizing their opinions. Moreover, sometimes introverts find it hard to get their words across too many people and would rather find it easier to keep silent.
7. Introverts can't be good leaders or public speakers
- Truth: They make great and inspirational leaders
- Bill Gates, Mahatma Gandhi, JK Rowling, Mark Zuckerberg and many of the history’s famous poets, artists and authors have been classified as introverts and have excelled in their field of expertise. It’s often thought that introverts lack the skill of public speaking and maybe unsuitable leaders. On the contrary, research has shown that introverts work better in groups and provide a better team environment as leaders. Nevertheless, whether introverts or extroverts, both personalities make great leaders and there is no debate on who is better.
8. You can tell the difference between an introvert and extrovert
- Truth: Don’t judge a book by its cover
- An introvert can be at party interacting with people and having the time of their life. Later, they may be at home enjoying some ‘alone time’ reading a book or sipping a cup of tea. Introverts behave well as extroverts but eventually the energy they expend drains out and they require some personal space to restore it.
9. Introverts can change themselves to become extroverts
- Truth: There’s no cure for introversion
- Introversion is not an illness; introverts can’t just fix themselves and be judged for their personality or behavior. Sadly, society has attributed Introversion to depression and thinks it is something that can be changed.
Introverts do like people and don’t hesitate to socialize but they just do it differently than extroverts. Introvert or extrovert every person develops a unique personality as they grow. Ultimately, it’s being a good human being that matters.
“Solitude matters, and for some people, it’s the air they breathe” – Susan Cain.
26 March 2020
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