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Introverted Power

Literature regarding introversion gives one the impression that introversion is seen as a sort of socially accepted disorder. Articles and books have titles such as "How to survive in business as an introvert", as if introverted people are a threatened species.

This causes introverts to wonder "What is wrong with me, that I need this sort of advice to survive?". Once you realize that as an introvert you need time alone to do your best life's work, then you can accept yourself and ignore headlines that imply introversion is a disorder. 

Therefore, I offer you these tips which help me. 
1. Be aware of your energy level. If you find that your community activities and volunteerism drains you, then step down from some of the boards and committees. Yes, you will find it hard, because you believe in the cause - however, your health and mental sanity is also important. I have given up some of my volunteer activities this year just to get time for myself on weeknights and weekends. 

2. Introverts are often strategists and thinkers. Therefore, instead of saying "I am day dreaming", phrase your self-talk to "I am investing time in thinking about my life strategy". This is honorable.

3. Just as grass needs water to grow, introverts need time to think, and work. It isn't about relaxing in front of the TV - it is about doing work in a way that aligns with your DNA. Therefore, take your time to think things through and come to your introverted conclusions. I tell salesmen up front that I take my time to make decisions. Most of them ignore me and offer the "I will give you a 10% discount if you buy it today" pressure technique. I never feel pressured and they always lose the sale. Except one. We buy cars from Balise Honda because the salesman is smart enough to say "OK, I know that you like to take your time - let me know when you are ready". And he has been rewarded with the purchase of five new cars in the time we have dealt with him. 

4. It is acceptable to turn down dinner invitations on the basis of "It will require too much people energy". I do it all the time. An evening alone after a gruelling day in the open-plan office is worth it to me.

As I get more used to accepting my introversion, I am more comfortable with turning down opportunities to be around people that would drain me, without providing equitable value in return for my energy. I attend conferences and schedule to miss one or two sessions so that I can recharge in my hotel room. It is how I learn the best and do my best work. 

If you are getting comfortable with your introversion, then stop feeling as if you have a disorder. Identify your introverted strengths of strategic thinking, persistence and ability to focus on topics, in depth, independently. I am a "team player" in my own way. I hope that you are too. 

Copyright 2018 Wayne Botha Email Wayne Cell: 860.214.4897