Introverts in an Extroverted World
With the new popularization of the qualities of the introvert, it is no wonder that more and more people are recognizing that perhaps, they themselves are introverts. Contrary to popular belief, an introvert is not always the shy kid in the corner, sweating bullets at the thought of a presentation in front of a classroom. In fact, as Susan Cain will define in her Ted Talk, “Shyness is about fear of social judgment. Introversion is more about how do you respond to stimulation, including social stimulation.”
But what exactly does that mean? In simpler words, introverts are those who can often be tired out by social activities, whereas an extrovert is energized them. An introvert needs to go home at the end of the day and spend time alone, seeking self-rejuvenation, whether it be in reading or the common activity of watching Netflix nowadays. They take joy in simply spending time by themselves after a long day of small talk and the everlasting flurry of social interaction.
Traits of an introvert, in fact, are often misconstrued in social media. They, in fact, are wonderful lecturers and presenters – though hate the aftermath of questioning. Yet a lot of what is known rings true – introverts prize deep conversation, habitually think before they speak, and withdraw from large crowds. And at least a third of the population falls under the introverted category.
In a society that is evolving towards media like Facebook and Snapchat, in which the number of posts and friends becomes an all-consuming task in the average teenager’s life, it can be hard to recognize the needs of introverts. As Cain mentions in her book, Quiet, top-notch schools like the Harvard Business School in the study she cites often leans towards benefiting extroversion. The way society is set up, with forging connections in business or simply attending an interview for a position is biased towards extroverts. That’s not to say that introverts are at a disadvantage – in fact, what could be better than being best friends with yourself, enjoying alone time? Though it can be draining catering daily to extroverted society, it is most important that introverts block out time to themselves to enjoy their own hobbies, whether it be sipping tea and listening to the rain, or turning on heavy rock music and dancing around. Finding worthy pursuits that are calming to the body and mind will serve as a recharge of sorts, like plugging a phone at the end of a day – and can will be worthwhile in the long run. So, introvert – partying all night with friends is not at all a betrayal of your personality – but take the time to unwind – listen to music, read a book, or sing in the shower. It’ll be good for you.
By Katie – 16 years old