Reading Length: 4 minutes
Hi my shy introverted friends. This post is dedicated to all you shy people including myself. Let me know if you relate to these experiences.
People called you quiet. They asked you why you were always so quiet and told you to come out of your shell. They forgot you were there. They thought you were unfriendly, intimidating, a loner, or cold. But you’re just shy.
Your mind is constantly wandering all over the place. Millions of thoughts are always in your mind but you could never seem to get it out. The voice in your head is louder than your actual voice.
You’re terrified of group gatherings. You avoid them at all costs when invited. But then your friends start to wonder why you always go MIA or ghost them. You actually like your friends. But you just need space for yourself often. There comes a time when you can’t keep rejecting invitations anymore so you reluctantly accept a few. When the day comes to hang out, you dread it so much.
You hate small talk. Especially about topics that don’t matter. You find it so pointless and boring. They start off with a boring “How are you?” “How was your day?” “Good.” It’s always so bland. They talk about the weather or the latest celebrity gossip. Blah blah blah.
Even when you do socialize with others, you wonder what they’re thinking about you. You feel self conscious about yourself. You’re worried that you will end up humiliating yourself. You’re afraid they’ll think you’re boring, weird or awkward. You try your best to act “normal” but all basic communication skills abandon you. You fall into awkward silences which makes you even more uncomfortable. Even making eye contact with people is uncomfortable. Your voice shakes, maybe you sweat a little and your face reddens. You’re probably the first one to always leave any social event.
You sometimes admire outgoing people in their ability to charm and easily talk to everyone. Everyone seems to love them and surround them. They’re popular, well liked and easy going. It makes you wonder: “How does socializing come so easy to them?” It makes you feel insecure about yourself and wonder: “Am I the problem? Is there something wrong with me? Why can’t I be charming and talkative like them?“
1. Our secret powers.
“If you aspire to be a good conversationalist, be an attentive listener. To be interesting, be interested. Ask questions that other persons will enjoy answering.”-Dale Carnegie, author of “How to Win Friends and Influence People”
We can use our quiet nature to our advantage. In a world that’s constantly talking, we can contribute by becoming good listeners. I mean, what’s the point of all the talking if there’s no one to listen? When people are feeling pain or anger, they need someone to empathize with them and listen to them.
We’re also highly observant of our environment and of people’s body language. It allows us to sense the tone of the situation and their mood. We’re also deep thinkers. With our deep thoughts, we can think more creatively or logically. We have the best of both worlds – the creative and the logical side. That’s why the world needs us listeners, observers and thinkers.
2. We embrace solitude.
“Solitude matters, and for some people, it’s the air they breathe”– Susan Cain, author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts.”
We enjoy solitude. We embrace the art of being alone. It’s peaceful, comforting and calming. There are certain times when we do feel social but we only have a limited social battery. When it runs out, we’re ready to go back home to recharge.
People are afraid to be alone but we find it comforting. There’s something beautiful about appreciating and loving your own company. Quarantine itself tested our ability and limitations to be alone.
We would rather be doing an activity that is quiet like reading, watching a movie, drawing, or writing. Fast paced and crazy activities like drinking and partying don’t excite us. They drain us. But this is a good thing. It doesn’t take a lot for us to feel a sense of contentment. We’re perfectly happy just enjoying the quiet activities. We’re happy with a boring life.
3. We get deeper connections.
“They prefer to devote their social energies to close friends, colleagues, and family….Many have a horror of small talk, but enjoy deep discussions.”– Susan Cain , author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts”
We don’t care about gaining more connections or popularity. We choose our friends wisely, prioritizing quality over quantity. In fact, I only have 3 close friends. No one else. We prefer to have fewer friends with closer bonds. It comes more natural to us to maintain a deeper bond with other people.
Since we hate small talk, we have more deeper conversations about what really matters. We love one-on-one conversations in order to really open up and get to know each other. And our great listening skills makes others to appreciate and value us more. We have a calming and soothing effect on people unlike the usual rushed and highly energetic people.
People trust us more so they confide to us. We’re a box full of secrets. Ready for blackmail. Kidding. When we do find those close bonds, it’s fulfilling and can last for years. That’s why the people that truly love and accept you will find their way into your life.
4. We’re not alone.
“Speak only if it improves upon the silence.”– Gandhi
“Don’t think of introversion as something that needs to be cured.”– Susan Cain, author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts”
It may seem like we’re alone at times in a crowd filled with endless talking and noise. But we’re not. There’s plenty of people who can relate to our struggles and experiences. That’s why we have this post here. In fact, surprisingly, between 40 to 60 percent of Americans report being shy.
I had to remind myself of this many times: There’s nothing wrong with you. Society wants to make you feel like there’s something wrong. Many figures like Eleanor Roosevelt, Rosa Parks, Bill Gates, Albert Einstein, and Dr. Seuss were all quiet introverts too. If you’re happy with your life and with who you are, then embrace that self love.
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