I have a special place in my heart for introverts. In a world where the bold and the outgoing are praised, we usually bear the brunt of society's wrath the most because we are seen as shy, timid, possibly weak individuals who prefer to stay cooped up in the house while the rest of the population turns up.
In spite of the pros that come along with people who possess extroverted traits, it's truly a shame that our society focuses mostly on extroverts (the loudest people who are usually seen as the most personable) because introverts have skills and abilities that are often overlooked. Introverts are remarkable people because, unlike extroverts who are quick on their feet and heavy talkers, introverts take the time to think before speaking, acting or doing.
Highly introspective, introverts are thinkers and look within to find the answers to their questions. They also are very aware of who they are, and what they bring to the world. Self-reflection is a key trait of an introvert. If you have a friend who is an introvert, you've probably noticed they give excellent advice because they pay close attention to detail, and to the needs and desires of others.
Do not be surprised when I tell you introverts have the ability to be great leaders and game changers. There is a quiet, assured and strong confidence that emanates from an introvert. Introverts don't have to be seen and heard, yet they make their presence known subtlety and powerfully.
In spite of this, people can often become confused when it comes to those who possess both introverted and extroverted traits. These people are usually referred to as ambiverts. A great mix, ambiverts can go through life seemingly extroverted on the outside, but have introverted traits that may hold them back from doing certain things that seem intimidating.
Acting is one of my passions, so I recently started going to improvisation classes through MeetUp.com by myself. But on the inside, I have my introverted ways that stop me from doing many things, such as going to parties without a friend I know. And then, there is the anxiety that comes along from meeting people who won't accept me, or my fear of huge crowds. All of these traits come as a surprise to some of my friends because of my seemingly extroverted personality.
That being said, here are seven things introverts with extroverted traits go through:
1. You want to turn up, but you can't get past your fear of embarrassment.
I absolutely love music, and if I'm at an event and a song I loves starts playing, my extroverted side wants to just get up, break loose and become the life of the party.
On the other hand, my introverted instincts tell me I'll look like a fool, which then causes me to hold back for fear of judgement from others. Because introverts are thinkers, it isn't our first instinct to go with the flow right away. This can also cause extroverted introverts to decline going to events for fear of the unknown.
There are questions such as, "What will happen when I get there? Will I be awkward? If I'm at a party, I would have to feel my way through everything, be close to people I know, and then I can turn up." It's a frustrating process, but I'm honestly working on this because my ass loves to dance.
2. You make the extra effort to avoid an awkward situation.
In spite of the fact that some believe you have everything under control, as partly introvert, you know better. So when you're out in public, you make the effort to appear as if you are a social butterfly.
If you're somewhere in which you know absolutely no one, you may strike up the first conversation to deflect from the fact that you're terrified on the inside. You compliment someone's shoes, comment on the weather, how long the food line is taking, anything, really. You want people to believe you can be that bold girl in public, but on the inside, you're desperately trying to keep it together.
3. You find new situations overwhelming.
Despite the fact that extroverted introverts work well with people, situations such as a new job can be daunting. I know for myself, I always get anxiety before I start a new job because I have to adjust to people around me and the demands of the job.
Employers often want workers who are outgoing. Most people know this already, so that can be a concern for us because the secret of being partly introverted is something they often don't want to be revealed.
Introverts who are also extroverts struggle to manage maintaining being sociable on the outside, but having the need to be in a mellow environment that caters to their introverted tendencies.
4. People often think you have no introverted traits at all.
Because I am so charismatic on the outside, many of my friends think I'm extroverted. They don't get that I can communicate well and sing my heart out in a talent show in front of a huge audience, while being simultaneously freaked the hell out before walking on stage.
5. You have a few friends and want more, but they have to be the right people.
This has definitely been an issue for me. I do have a few close friends who share similar introverted personality traits, but sometimes I just get so bored and want to be with people who can turn the f*ck up and have some fun.
But, it's a struggle because I don't want to meet people who are wrong for me. Some people are into extroverted things that I'm not comfortable doing.
6. Low-key places are your happy place.
Although you enjoy going to concerts with your friends, places like coffee shops are the perfect setting for you to be around people, but also to get into your head.
Introverts need time to recuperate from the noise of the world, but it's also refreshing to be in spaces where you can feed off the energy of other people. Contrary to popular belief, introverts can't be alone 24/7. I don't think anyone can, really.
7. You're a unique person who's full of surprises.
Extroverted introverts can surprise you by being the friend who can host an awesome event with confidence and allure, but also has periods where they just need to be alone.
Because there are two sides to extroverted introverts, some people are surprised by the remarkable ability these people have to be so charismatic, yet mysterious and mellow. We really are the best of both worlds because we can switch our personalities to suit situations, while looking intrinsically for answers, so we can then give the world our best selves.