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What Every Introvert Should Do to Live a Great Life

What Every Introvert Should Do to Live a Great Life

An introvert by definition is a person who is predominantly concerned with his own thoughts and feelings rather than external things. Introverts possess characteristics seen as shy, reticent, and are often assumed to be self-centered.

Introverts are people holding a treasure that is worth discovering. They are not people who hate people, but they prefer to be alone rather than to be in the crowd surrounded. There are positive aspects to both introverts and extroverts, and this article will explore the positive aspects of life as an introvert, and how you can embrace the different parts to live a happy life.

1. Confronting part (internal)

As some people prefer to be around others–introverts– some people like to be left alone with their own thoughts–the introverts. Confronting with oneself is the most important part of being introvert. If you tend to enjoy more time alone then be more alone. If you force yourself to go in the crowd just to pretend to be someone you are not, you are going to experience mood failure.

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Before making someone else happy, we need to have positive energy to share that happiness. If we go against our happiness, it’s bad for our health, happiness, and the environment.

Energy is flow–every atom vibrate at any given frequency, which proves that we have waves of positivity or negativity to share, depending on our mood status. Do not go against your own self because that’s the destructive part and trouble maker.

2. Cope with public (external)

Okay, let’s not confuse some things. Being an introvert is not a person who hates people and would rather be swaying in the corner, sitting alone in the dark room, than to be present in a bright room full of people.

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Coping with the public is cheerful for everyone. Introverts need less time with people, but they vitally need that part. Sharing our thoughts and having someone to understand us is always a must. Introverts have fewer people they can open up to. That means introverts external part is a must, but the number of people they open up is few. They prefer smaller entourage, rather than bigger one.

Some imagine introverts as Will Smith from I Am Legend, which is a common misconception. They are happy having a small, close circle of friends rather than a crowd.

3. Accepting part (internal and external)

The part where the flow of the chemistry with oneself combines is the part where we accept ourselves as the person we are.

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After confronting, we need to accept and live by that rule our whole life. It’s something like having a code. Introverts live by the code expressed by the quote “I’m rarely bored alone; I’m often bored in groups and crowds.”

Having fun and enjoying with oneself is a gift that needs to be embraced. Lot people I personally know, and many of my close friends, can’t be left alone. They seek someone to hangout and must be around the crowd. That states them as extroverts and they accept that.

Extroverts have one funny quote which describes them perfect “When people assume something’s wrong because you don’t feel like talking.” Usually, if we don’t assume that is wrong, there is quite big possibility that they are introverts because the mind speaks all the time, either we share that voice with people or we keep it to ourselves. Even when we sleep, we often dream. “That thing” up there never sleeps.

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We have to confront ourselves, combine with our feelings, see what makes us happy, and accept that we are the way we are.

Featured photo credit: Happy Girl Hopscotch in Strawberry Free Creative Commons/Pink Sherbet Photography via flickr.com

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What Every Introvert Should Do To Live A Great Life

What Every Introvert Should Do To Live A Great Life

As an introvert, I understand how life seems quite overwhelming. Constant anxiety and nervousness when engaging with people, especially those who are out of our comfort zone, feels inhibiting. Moreover, one gets misunderstood on many levels by extroverts, and this adds to our frustrations when trying to communicate. The below tips help in alleviating some of our woes, so that we introverts can live great and fulfilling lives.

1. Fit in.

Fitting into a social gathering or a party may seem exhausting for introverts. Bring in a friend or a colleague with whom you are comfortable. Alternatively, come early to the party when the crowd is thin to identify and meet people who share your interests. This way when the party gets loud and the room gets crowded, you are already in your comfort zone.

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2. Over-communicate.

Man is a social animal, and seeks constant communication and feedback with anyone he encounters. For introverts, this is not something that is easy to internalize. To compensate for this lack of understanding, always over-communicate. Acknowledge anyone you meet. The acknowledgement need not be verbal; a smile on the face or a pat on the back works well too. Similarly, when communicating your feelings and emotions with others, don’t be shy about your feedback. Be assertive, and, if necessary, repetitive in getting the message across.

3. Focus the conversation.

As introverts, we do not like meandering around endless conversations. Such conversations seem pointless and a waste of energy. Rather than getting frustrated in the cacophony of noise, one should focus the conversation with objective, reflective, interpretive and decisional questions. This helps to maintain our mental equilibrium, to add meaning to the conversation, and, if lucky, to bring the conversation to a logical end.

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4. Prepare.

Prepare in advance before you attend a social gathering, or a meeting. Have some topics of conversation ready. Be ready with what you want to share. If possible play out in your head how you would like to steer the conversation. Think of all the diversions and how would you tackle them. This may seem cumbersome at the start, but once you have a standard script ready, it is easy to customize for just about any occasion.

5. Know your limits.

Understand your limits, and do not push them without reason. It is OK to say “no” if you are not comfortable attending a social event. Even at the workplace, although it may not be possible to say “no” all the time, one should give subtle hints if one is not comfortable engaging in certain activities. Moreover, instead of getting intimidated or overwhelmed by people around you, try to adapt. For example, if you have a chatterbox as a colleague around you, then it would be wise to invest in a good pair of noise cancelling headphones.

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6. Invest your energy wisely.

As Introverts, we have a fixed amount of patience and energy to deal with social engagements, be it personal or professional. It is important to invest our energies wisely. For example, if I have a big marketing event to attend in the evening, then I will try to have a peaceful and quiet morning. In addition, I rarely schedule exhausting social interactions on consecutive days. Try to pick and choose your social events, instead of attending every event that comes your way.

7. Breathe in; meditate.

There are days, when life gets overwhelming. We tend to freeze up. Taking the next step seems like a chore. Sometimes we get worked up over trivial issues, and small issues snowball into huge panic attacks . In those times, understand that it is all in your mind. Take a deep breath, and meditate on what is bothering you. Once you identify it, try to do a mental pro-con list and objectively analyze if makes sense to spend any more energy on the issue. If yes, make a note of it and decide to come back to it at a later time. If no, take another deep breath and move on.

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8. Write.

Journaling day-to-day activities is a great way to understand your emotions and feelings. It allows you to come back to issues or conflicts that are bothersome. Having a dialogue with oneself, through journal writing, helps to arrive at surprising conclusions, ones that could never be reached while ruminating the same thoughts in your mind again and again. This extends to writing on blogs or writing books. If blogging helps you to establish a presence in the online world, and then extend those relationships in the real world, then all power be to you.

9. Schedule some “me time.”

As Introverts, we need our time and space to recharge ourselves. It is fine to stay at home to clean your apartment or room of all the unwanted clutter. In this way, we make sure that our environment is safe and nurturing for us. Similarly, one can go out for a walk or a run. This provides the needed solitude required to recharge, along with the added benefit of releasing endorphins that make you feel great. Do whatever works for you, and make sure that others do not encroach on your “me time.”

10. Be yourself.

We introverts have feelings and emotions to hide away from everything and everyone around us. Part of the reason might be that we do not like to explain ourselves or our actions to others. However, these are not healthy feelings. At best, they work contribute to ostracizing ourselves from the world. And for most of us, this is not our final aim. Instead, one needs to understand and celebrate the traits that make you an introvert. Sooner rather than later, you should realize that the traits that made you seem out of place earlier are the ones that help you to be successful in life.

Featured photo credit: Mark J Sebastian via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

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