Misunderstanding introverts and our sometimes complex personality is very very easy. At least that is how it looks like from the standpoint of an introvert. There are several misconceptions about introverts, which are simply not right. Some common misconceptions may be true to some introverts, but that is not because of that they are introverts. Here are some very common misconceptions that we introverts face.
TL;DR Things that we introverts are commonly misunderstood or misinterpreted in
- Introverts are shy. – No! Being introverted doesn’t automatically make you shy.
- Introverts don’t like talking. – Wrong! We don’t like pointless small talk.
- Introverts don’t like to work in groups. – Wrong! We like to work in groups too and contribute to the common goal, but we need our own space from time to time to perform at our best.
- Introverts just always want to be left alone. – Wrong again! We need to choose our battles, to choose between spending time with others which drains our energy or being in solitude recharging and gaining energy.
- Introverts are underachievers. – Wrong! Being an introvert doesn’t make you an achiever or underachiever, the actions we take or don’t take make us either-or.
- Introverts can be “fixed” and turned into extroverts. – Nope, we can’t! Being an introvert is not something you can remove from us.
- Introverts are boring. – Wrong! Because we like to dwell in our own thoughts we surely as h*ll have a lot of great ideas.
Introverts are shy
No! Being introverted does not automatically mean that you are shy or vice versa; being shy does not automatically mean that you are introverted. It is probably one of the most common misconceptions about introverts to think that we are all shy. Shyness is something other than being introverted.
Naturally, a person can be shy and introverted. However, an introverted person can be socially intelligent, courageous, talkative and so forth and simply not shy. If you meet this kind of a not shy, socially talented introvert, you might not even know and realize that he or she is an introvert. It is likely, though, that the socially talented introvert will be quite selective on his or her social interactions.
Introverts don’t like talking
Wrong again! This is another very common misconceptions about introverts. What is often true is that we introverts don’t like pointless small talk, but many of us like to talk once we have had time to formulate our thoughts and feelings about the subject. And this of course takes some time Many of us introverts are somewhat slow in communication, so don’t rush us, please.
Many of us introverts actually like to talk, some of us even like to talk a lot, but that is usually true only when we have something to say and we feel that what we are about to say is something valuable and contributes to the conversation. If people really want to know what we think, then they have to give us some time to think and also some time to speak up.
One more thing; if you ask an introvert something, an opinion, idea or so, please take the time to listen to what we have to say. Even if we speak slowly while we are thinking. It is very frustrating to be forced to speak quicker than you naturally would just because the conversation partner doesn’t have the patience to listen.
Introverts don’t like to work in groups
This is once again wrong! Just because you are an introvert, doesn’t mean that you don’t like to work with other people in a group. What is usually correct is that we introverts like to work alone and focus on our own at the tasks we have in front of us. For many of us introverts, this is just the way we are able to work at our best.
There are tasks that we like to take care of alone in solitude, especially the tasks that need a lot of focus. However many of us introverts like to work in a group and contribute to the common goal. The thing for us is just that we need our space and time to perform at our best. Therefore it is not uncommon that introvert steps aside and isolates him or herself away from others at certain tasks.
Introverts always want to be left alone
Wrong! It is true that we introverts like and need solitude and we like to spend time alone. We even need that to survive, to stay energized and feel well. This isolation doesn’t mean that we introverts don’t like other people and that we wouldn’t enjoy spending time with others. It is one of the oftentimes heard misconceptions about introverts that we don’t like people and want always to be left alone.
Because social interactions drain our energy, we need to choose our battles. In practice, we need to choose between spending time with others (which drains our energy) or spending time in solitude recharging and gaining energy.
Introverts are underachievers
Wrong! The thing that we introverts don’t run around shouting out about our achievements, successes, the hard work we have done and so forth doesn’t mean that we haven’t achieved something of value. There are tons of successful introverted doctors, researchers, teachers, businessmen, athletes and people from all fields of life, just open your eyes.
Introverts can be “fixed” and turned into extroverts
Nope, we can’t! Being an introvert is not something you can remove from us or teach us to be extroverts. An introverted person like any other person can learn to be social, to be less shy, to speak in front of people, to be socially intelligent, etc., but nothing like this removes our introverted personality and our need for solitude.
We don’t need to be fixed, thank you. We just need to be understood! Besides, who would need you to change anyway and why?
Introverts are boring
Oh, boy (sarcasm alert)! Yes, that is absolutely right, especially if you don’t like to listen to what we have to say, what we think and what we have come up with. We often dwell deep in our own minds, thinking and thinking some more. We tend to think a lot, and I mean a lot about how we feel and think, why do we feel and think the way we do and what our own opinions, plans, and interests are. Just because of this you can be sure that an introvert has something interesting and something which is not boring in mind.
There is one more thing to this; what we introverts see as fun and interesting might not always be something that is the most popular thing to do, but we sure as h*ll are good at spending some quality time on something that we see really interesting. Besides, we often are very good at spending time alone.
Conclusions – Avoid misconceptions by getting to know us!
There are many common misconceptions about introverts. Many of the misconceptions are probably well earned due to our introverted personality and our behaviour. Many misconceptions arise when people don’t get to know the introverted person well enough. We introverts tend to be a bit harder to get to know really well because many of us have put up strong shields or walls around us. These kinds of things might make it very easy to misunderstand our true personality.
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