There’s a lot of misinformation around the internet these days regarding being an introvert, especially introverts in beings. While you may think you’re an introvert because you’re shy or have social anxiety, that doesn’t actually define introversion. I’ll give you the two things that will help you decide if you’re actually an introvert.
How Introverts Process
The first part of being an introvert is how they process information. This can be both feelings and thoughts. Introverts process the world around them internally.
This means that they will figure out the information inside their brain before discussing it. They will sort through it and decide what it worth the energy to share verbally.
While introverts process internally, this may lead to some thinking that they are shy, quiet, or reserved. This is far from the case.
In business, introverts need more time to process information. If you’re working with an introvert on your team, try giving them time to process their thoughts and feelings alone. Sometimes the pressure of coming up with a response on the spot can stifle them.
Introverts and Energy
To recharge or gain energy, introverts will need some quiet and alone time. This is not 100% a guarantee that you’re an introvert. You might just be a really busy mom who needs some quiet time. But, this is a huge indicator of being an introvert.
Let’s say you’re with people at a conference. At the end of the conference, do you need a nap or are you feeling full of energy? I have attended conferences, gave my all, and needed to sleep for two days once I returned home.
Introverts will recharge during alone time. Often, their energy is drained by “being on” around people. Whether that is at work, while shopping for groceries, or giving a public presentation.
It’s vital that if you’re an introverted entrepreneur that you build in time for recharging. Make it part of your self-care routine. One thing that I do is make sure I build 15-30 minute blocks between calls. This allows me to process the last call and time to prepare for the next one.
You’re Not an Introvert
I once had a former friend tell me I wasn’t an introvert. I was a little annoyed by that because there is no way someone knows me better than myself. I had to explain to this person that 1) just because I talk to you a lot and 2) I can give group presentations doesn’t mean I’m an extrovert.
There’s this misconception that only extroverts are friendly and talkative. I know many shy extroverts and many social introverts. It’s all about where the energy comes from and the processing of information.
What an Introvert is Not
Introverts are not always shy and quiet. They do not all have social anxiety. These can be part of both personality tendencies. Sure introverts can have or be those things, but it doesn’t mean you’re automatically an introvert.
You can read my Confessions of an Introvert blog post here for more about being an introvert.
Introverts Make Great Entrepreneurs and Leaders
Just because you are more reserved, process information inside your brain, and need to be alone to recharge doesn’t mean you can’t be an entrepreneur or a leader. In fact, there are many successful people in this industry that are introverts, including myself.
I think we see a lot of extroverted entrepreneurs getting accolades because they enjoy being the center of attention. It’s easy for them to speak up and be noticed. Their voices get elevated easily because they naturally talk a lot.
You can easily harness your introversion as a superpower. Being an introvert allows for strengths such as listening and negotiating. I help my clients grow their businesses through personality and strengths-based coaching. We take a look at their personality tendencies as well as their enneagram and develop their entire business strategy around it.
Being an Introvert in Business
Do not let people tell you that because you’re an introvert you can’t do something. You can show up on the internet. You can film YouTube videos. You can be a podcast host. You can do ANYTHING you set your mind to–especially when you know how to use that introversion as a strength!
Ready to utilize your personality to grow your business? Learn more about my 1:1 coaching by applying here: Personality & Strengths-Based Business Coaching Application.