Whenever I tell someone that I'm introverted, their immediate response is, "but you're so talkative!" or, "you're not shy at all!" and, well, they're right. As introverts, we think and act in different ways, but that doesn't necessarily make us mice. Some of the world's greatest leaders like Abraham Lincoln and Rosa Parks were introverted, along with the king of social media as we know it, Mark Zuckerberg. There are many misconceptions about introverts. Here, you'll find six of them:
1. Introverts are shy
This is the biggest misconception about us. Of course, some introverts may actually be shy, but this is not necessarily the case. The words "shy" and "introvert" are used interchangeably as synonyms, but it's simply not true. We just like to pick our spots. We don't need to be the center of attention in a discussion, but when a topic we're passionate about is brought up, be prepared. While shyness is a form of behavior, introversion is a lifestyle. Trust me, "outgoing introverts" is a real thing.
2. Introverts are poor public speakers
I'm sure everyone has heard of Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela, Jimmy Carter, Mel Gibson, and Mother Teresa. While all of these well known historical figures are known for their speaking, they also have on key thing in common. They're all introverted. Yes, you read that right. Some of the most influential speakers to walk the planet were introverted.
3. Introverts don't like to make friends
No, no, no. I enjoy being able to make friends with like-minded individuals, as do other introverts. While we don't necessarily get stimulated by new found connections, we love to have people we can turn to just to talk.
4. Introverts are lonely
Just because we like to be alone doesn't mean we are alone. Just like any other person, we enjoy social contact, but also enjoy the time we can have to ourselves to reflect and think. For extroverts, their form of recharging arises from social interaction. We prefer to do something on our own.
5. Introverts are boring
Next time someone tells you they're an introvert, strike up a conversation with them. I promise that you'll gain something from it. Since we spend so much thinking and analyzing, we're bundles of information ready to be explored.
6. Introverts are more intellectual than extroverts
While more introspective, introverts are not necessarily "smarter" than extroverts. There have been a countless number of extroverts throughout time who have proven to be some of the brightest minds to ever walk the earth. Introverts just have a different way of thinking. Intelligence stems from problem-solving skills, not whether or not you're an introvert or an extrovert.
I hope that this can help point out some of the myths about introversion. While introversion is not better than extroversion and vice versa, it's great to be able to understand both sides and view the common misconceptions, to allow us to be a bit more understood.