It's hard to understand what being an introvert actually means if you don't identify as one. It's also hard to understand the extroverted side of things as well. The common knowledge is introvert means shy and antisocial. However that isn't entirely the case all the time and I have found there are many assumptions and sets of expectations that come along when someone realizes you are an introvert. Even though the definition of an introvert reads "a shy, reticent person," there is absolutely more of a gray area to it when classifying and understanding why someone identifies this way.

Here are some of the misunderstandings I have encountered along the way:

1. Introverts don't like to socialize. Ever. In actuality, there are many times when introverts do very much enjoy being at a large social gathering and interacting with new people. The difference here between someone who is introverted and someone who is extroverted is that it might come more naturally for the extroverted individual to mingle and put themselves out there. Introverts are usually most comfortable in small intimate groups with people they know very well, and that being said they are able to interact with strangers, but it can sometimes be exhausting to do so. Introverts may not be as inclined to go out as often as extroverts and that doesn't mean they fully reject socializing at all times.

2. Introverts aren't good with asserting themselves and lack confidence. Another example here that comes to mind relates to the work place. I think a typical assumption is introverts don't have the capacity to stand up for themselves in a group setting, or at a certain job because of their reticent nature and this is very much not the case. Identifying as an introvert doesn't mean you don't feel comfortable with going after what you want and being passive. It is certainly more of a challenge for one to do this because it doesn't come as naturally for an introvert to talk to someone they don't know very well. But none of that means an introvert will refrain from going out of their way to stand up for their best interest.


3. Introverts want to be left alone all the time. Yes, introverts need their own personal time to recharge, as opposed to extroverts who typically get their energy from being around people. However there isn't a constant state of solitary an introvert needs to become immersed in. It just helps to have a night in alone sometimes to feel more refreshed. Introverts do enjoy the company of people but in smaller doses. So someone should never think that a person who identifies as this doesn't want them around, it just means they may need a break for a little while to gather themselves.

Obviously I can't pinpoint the exact misunderstandings that coincide with introverts and everyone has different social preferences. But one thing that is certain is just because someone is more inclined to identify as an introvert never means they absolutely don't want other people around and make no effort. They just enjoy their alone time sometimes to recharge!