Ep #1: Why being an introvert isn’t a problem
This episode will help you change how you see yourself as an introvert. If you find yourself saying things like “I’m too quiet” or “I’m not good with people” or otherwise feeling disadvantaged because of your introvertedness, then this episode is for you.
We’ll explore where this flavor of disempowering self-talk comes from, what to do about it and why it’s worth the effort.
Hello, beautiful friend. Welcome to the first episode of the Empowered Introvert podcast. I am just so thrilled for you and what you can do with the information in this podcast. So it is designed to help you create more confidence in your life, to help you enjoy your work, figure out difficult problems, especially with people.
It’s gonna help you have better boundaries, help you make decisions, powerful decisions that feel in alignment with who you truly are. And that might feel a little bit difficult or or challenging. Ultimately lead to you feeling more empowered, more of who you are. And we’re also going to do some healing of underlying patterns and ways of thinking that right now probably take up a lot of energy. When you change this, you gain access to so much energy that you can then use for personal growth, for expanding, exploring, for creating your most beautiful version of this life. That is exactly what we’re here to do.
I’m so grateful to be here with you in your car, in your kitchen, or on your walk. I’ve got a cup of tea here and my cat over on the floor, and we are ready to dive in.
Okay, so now I wanna talk about a definition of being introverted. But before we go there, I wanna note how this definition is in opposition to being extroverted. So we have these opposites, a polarity. Extroversion on one end and introversion on the other and we’re starting with a place of extroversion being the better option.
Why? Because that’s what our culture tells us. Our culture values, the flashy, the outgoing, the salesy type, and we have received messages our whole lives that. The characteristics of extroverts are better, they’re better for success at work, in relationships, and pretty much life in general. That’s the messages that we receive.
But messages aren’t THE truth. Sometimes it might be overtly like our parents telling us to to go play with friends more, that it’s not okay to be alone or we receive it a little bit more co like subtly in our work, we’re we notice that in like our manager doesn’t make sure that there is space for us to talk in a meeting and just lets the extroverts overrun everything.
So I want you to notice if you connect with that, with that polarity and that maybe you have absorbed some subtle or some overt judgment about you as an introvert that it’s not okay. Maybe even that there’s something wrong, and that in order for you to be successful, you need to change.
If you’re noticing that so much compassion to you, it’s totally normal and was exactly why we are here. What does it mean to be an introvert? So a lot of how we think about being introverted, it’s about your energy and your energetic boundaries. So you tend to love to be alone. You recharge within your own energy.
Introverts often have very active imaginations. They spend a lot of time reflecting on inform. On listening to people more than contributing, more than talking in social situations. Because we’re more comfortable in our own energy. It can feel uncomfortable to be around other people, and there’s a, it’s a lot of different reasons for that, that we’ll explore in future but it can make it oftentimes also difficult for us to feel like we can contribute because other people are taking up all of the the space in multiple ways and it can be very agitating to our nervous system. So we feel like we’re out of our comfort zone and the most comfortable place is within our own space, our own lovely little.
There’s been studies that show that introverts actually do, like physically, biologically, have more sensitive nervous systems. So our, when we capture energy, we capture sensory input we have a tendency to become more agitated. You might experience this if you’re in a crowded store or at a loud show a music show where there’s a lot of mu lights as well, and it, and it feels agitating or overwhelming.
So that’s the nervous system responding and it’s a biological response. There are ways that we can help to soothe that response, which we’re definitely gonna explore in a future episode here soon. But the important thing to, to notice is that this tendency to adjective for agitation often contributes to anxiety and to a tendency to experience self doubt.
Self-doubt when it’s a big part of our thought process then it has a ripple effect into how we make our decisions, the speed with which we make them, whether we’re questioning them or not. So there can be a tendency for introverts to have a, a lot of mental activity that goes towards inward analysis and questioning.
Along with that though, there can be great self-awareness, great sensitivity very, like a lot of empathy and ability to understand what is going on. And when we think back to that polarity, like in comparison to extrovert or what we call what Susan Kane calls the extrovert, . An extrovert is someone who, who might share what they’re thinking without processing it, right?
They’ll, they might take up space without hearing other people’s perspectives, and thus they don’t fully understand the situation. It can seem like they’re less self-aware.
Let me say right here, take all of this at with a grain of salt, this is not a checklist where you’re either one or the other. Human beings have a huge range of, of possibility and nuance. that it, it’s not like one way forever. You can change depending on, on how old you are on who you’re with, your comfort level on your familiarity with the topic. So none of this is like set in stone intended for you to define yourself. It’s just a place for us to start .
So now that we have a definition of being introverted and we have an understanding that there is, there are messages that being extroverted is better, more advantageous than being introverted, you want to take a look at how you’ve internalized. , how you might be using this to value yourself.
Have you adopted the idea that extroversion is better in some way, in some subtle way, so that you then feel less than. As human beings, we do this. Extroverts, introverts, we all do this, right? So, no thinking "I’m not good enough" isn’t not exclusive to us, but some of the ways that you can notice that as an introvert you might be internalizing these messages of less than is when if you say things like, oh, I’m just, I’m too quiet.
I don’t say enough. Right. I don’t know what to say. I’m awkward, right? It’s hard to socialize.
This is just how I am. It’s easier for me to just be alone, right? As I say, that list, it might sound like if you connect to it, it might just sound like you’re just talking about yourself. But really like something like, I’m too quiet. It is a, it’s a value statement. It’s a comparison as if being, what’s better is to be less quiet and to be more loud. Can you see that? And so when we’re saying, I’m too quiet, we’re saying, saying it’s a problem, being introverted is a problem.
And this is totally normal to think . This is what our brains do. There’s nothing actually wrong with you. You’re not too quiet. You’re just, you, the unique person that you are.
and it’s important. It might be uncomfortable to recognize, but it’s so important because when you recognize this, when you can see the subtle ways that you’ve internalized this tendon, this ide idealization of the extrovert ideal, which comes from Susan Kane, then you can change. , right? Then you can.
Decide to think about yourself in a way that is more supportive. I’m going to help you do that in this podcast. We’re not gonna spend a lot of time on that today other than offering to you that this is an option, right? You can choose to value yourself in a way that doesn’t you need to fix yourself.
Just love and embrace who you already are. When you feel good about how you interact with people, you stop dreading it. You stop overthinking your sharing. You find ways to embrace how you communicate in the best way, to create the conditions for you to communicate in a way that is amazing for you, that taps into your imagination, to the power of your deep reflection. you learn how to set boundaries so that it’s easier to be around people, even the difficult ones, and doing all of this from a place of, of love and feeling good about yourself versus feeling like it’s you against the world. . And when you really embrace who you are, you, you reduce the anxiety, you reduce the worrying and the overthinking and can calm down.
You can become more confident and more resilient and show up your way and let that, and it’s okay. Right? It’s not like you’re trying to show up as an extrovert, and it’s the only option. It’s like you showing up as you is is an option that is different and amazing. So you can really learn to embrace your introvert qualities and build on them.
and if you’re not there yet, amazing. That’s why we’re here. It’s an invitation for you to really look within, to open up, to cultivate, and give your attention to yourself in a way that’s gonna help you blossom. To review. We’ve talked about the definition of an introvert and how there is a cultural bias towards extra virgin and that we have.
Probably in some ways internalize that, and it affects how you think about yourself, how you feel, which affects your self-confidence. It affects your anxiety and stress levels. It affects, which affects then how you show up in your work, in your relationships, and in your life, and really what you think is possible for yourself.
and ultimately that you can choose, that you can change this, that you can decide to value yourself and really lean into what it means to be an introvert, and from there, create more confidence, create more calm, which creates a foundation upon which you can build work relationships in.
That’s what being an empowered introvert is, and I like to look at it from a holistic. Perspective of understanding what it means to be you from a nervous system point of view, from an emotional point of view, from a mindset point of view. Because all of these directions have so much information and tools and opportunities for you to nourish.
And when you understand how you work as an introvert in these different ways, then you can better know how to support yourself to feel more confident and calm. So just like with the definition of being introverted and how there’s a cultural bias towards being extrover, the way that we think about our mind, body, and spirit.
Often a lot of that is informed by our culture by external people, even people close to us. Like I use the term culture as like all like a, like an onion, right? It it includes the people who are closest to you all the way out to our, you know, our governments and televis. . And so as an introvert and a lot of those, they have messages that are more geared towards being extroverted.
But even that aside is just like being human, what it means to be a healthy, happy, grounded human. There’s so much opportunity for us to reflect on how we are being and how we can support ourselves to feel better and to be our best, and that is what we’ll will be doing here in future episodes of the Empowered Introvert.
Take care, friend, and I’ll see you next time.