Society lies to us.
It tells us that in order to be happy and successful, we must be loud, energetic, and extroverted.
But it’s wrong.
And once you discover that being an introvert is not something that needs to be fixed, something interesting starts to happen.
You start to accept and love yourself more, just the way you are.
This is the moment you truly start to live and stop trying to fit in. You start to work on your strengths and you start to bloom.
Now, when did I discover that being an introvert was not something to be fixed?
After reading the book Quiet by Susan Cain.
In it, I discovered the world of introverts.
I discovered there were millions of people, just like you and me, who were more quiet, more considerate, and more benevolent.
I remember thinking: “Oh, so I’m not the only one who avoids social interactions? I’m not the only one being drained by spending too much time with other people?”
I felt relief.
After a couple of years of self-exploration, I can now say that I have accepted the way I am 100%, as an awesome introvert.😊
I’ve also observed other peaceful and happy introverts along the way and noticed 7 common habits.
I hope you’ll enjoy them!
Habit #1: Happy introverts know themselves and continue to learn about themselves every day.
“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” -Aristotle
Like I said before, once you learn about the world of introverts, you start to relax more. You stop trying to be someone else. You start to shine in your own way.
I'm honored to have Maxime Lagacé as our guest blogger this week. I first "met" Maxime through his amazing website. He is full of passion and vigor and his words, his wisdom, and his story are such an inspiration. Enjoy!
One way I’ve learned more about myself and my introversion was by taking an MBTI test. Those tests helped me understand myself, which translated into more inner peace.
Another way that worked truly well for me was by traveling and experimenting with other cultures.
For example, I had the opportunity to study in Hong Kong for 5 months during my bachelor's degree. I needed a good amount of courage to do that but it was worth gold in terms of self-knowledge.
Keep in mind:
when we know ourselves, we don't try to impress others. We simply are. We simply do.
Question to become a happy introvert: How can you learn more about yourself? Could you journal? Meditate? Talk to a psychiatrist? Take online tests?
Habit #2: Happy introverts don't try to "fix" themselves.
“Being weird, independent and loving solitude are not limitations. They are superpowers.”
Once you know and accept yourself more, you start to put your energy in the right places.
● Trying to fit in
● Trying to talk more than others
● Trying to get attention
● Trying to look better than others
● Trying to have more “likes” and “followers” than others
In short, you stop comparing and competing with others.
You stop trying to fix yourself. You know your strengths and the strengths of others.
So what does this all mean?
You realize being an introvert is awesome.
You also come to the conclusion that the world needs:
● more people who listen
● more people who are insightful and empathetic
● more people who are powerful, yet humble
Question to become a happy introvert: Do you have the feeling that your introversion needs to be fixed? What could you do to love yourself even more?
Habit #3: Happy introverts ignore social gatherings when they don't feel like it.
“Introverts are word economists in a society suffering from verbal diarrhea.” -Michaela Chung
“I wish, as well as everybody else, to be perfectly happy; but like everybody else, it must be in my own way.” -Jane Austen
In the book Drive, author Dan Pink tells us that motivation increases when we feel we have autonomy over what we do.
That’s why I rarely take lunch with colleagues. When I feel forced to do something, it tends to demotivate me.
In my last job, I was fortunate to have nature trails a few minutes away. Thus, I preferred spending time there rather than being “forced” to sit down around a table.
Question to become a happy introvert: Do you feel obligated to attend social gatherings? Why don't you spend more time reading, reflecting, learning, exploring, and doing something you truly love?
Habit #4: Happy introverts spend time the way they like (not the way society tells them).
“Three things in life – your health, your mission, and the people you love. That’s it” -Naval Ravikant
Lots of people spend time on social media and Netflix.
Now, since we are mimetic creatures, we feel a certain pressure to conform. We want to be part of the tribe even if it’s not aligned with who we truly are.
Personally, I know spending too much time on social media, Twitter, YouTube, and Netflix will not contribute to my well-being and happiness. In fact, it’s the opposite.
I’ve noticed the more I waste time there, the more I feel exhausted.
For me, there are 3 things I try to focus on each day:
● my health (I try to train, walk, run or bike)
● my family (I try to spend quality time with my family)
● my mission (I try to help people and improve my website WisdomQuotes)
I try to remember that anything besides that is a distraction.
In short, find what you truly value in life (2-4 things max). It will help you put your energy in the right places.
Question to become a happy introvert: Do you feel pressure to do what society tells you to do? What would you regret the most: spending 2 hours with your family or 2 hours on social media?
Habit #5: Happy introverts take their time to recharge. They say “no” easily.
“Be a loner. That gives you time to wonder, to search for the truth. Have holy curiosity. Make your life worth living” -Albert Einstein
“You’ve gotta keep control of your time, and you can’t unless you say no. You can’t let people set your agenda in life.” -Warren Buffett
Extroverts get a boost when they spend time with others.
As introverts, it’s the opposite. Spending time with others takes away our energy.
But that’s fine once we know how to deal with this.
Here’s the secret:
you need tactics to recharge once in a while. You must learn to say no.
For example, when you feel exhausted, consider:
● taking a walk (even a 5-minute walk helps me feel better and recharged)
● disconnecting from social media sites
● even better: fasting 2-3 days or more without your favorite social media sites
● practice saying “no” (saying “no” could also mean not answering your phone, a message or an email you just received, etc.)
If you want, you can give simple explanations like “I’ll have a short walk outside”. And if you don’t feel like it, give no explanation at all. Just say “I’ll come back in 10 minutes”.
Question to become a happy introvert: Do you feel exhausted sometimes? Could you take more time to recharge? Could you spend more time taking care of yourself?
Habit #6: Happy introverts put their strengths to work.
“Without great solitude no serious work is possible.” -Pablo Picasso
“The secret to life is to put yourself in the right lighting. For some, it’s a Broadway spotlight, for others, a lamplit desk.” -Susan Cain
“Silence is a source of great strength.” -Lao Tzu
Once you know yourself and you’re comfortable saying no, you want to put your strengths to great use.
Like all human beings, introverts like to feel useful and appreciated for who they are. Their uniques gifts mostly reside in solving difficult problems, counseling, writing, organizing, science, engineering, programming, etc.
Indeed, introverts thrive in professions that offer them autonomy and time to think. Most introverts also work better where they can be alone for long periods of uninterrupted time.
This way they can feel a sense of purpose, mastery, and progress, which are all vital to feeling motivated, inspired, and satisfied.
Question to become a happy introvert: What are your strengths? Are you putting them to work? Could you decrease or remove tasks that take most of your energy and don't contribute much to your success?
Habit #7: Happy introverts love to help others, but just in a different way.
“Our culture is biased against quiet and reserved people, but introverts are responsible for some of humanity’s greatest achievements.” -Susan Cain
“Do not underestimate the determination of a quiet man.” -Iain Duncan Smith
Introverts find a deep sense of purpose when they help others.
In fact, in the book Drive, Dan Pink tells us that doing work we find meaningful mostly results in elevated motivation and happiness.
But here’s the kicker:
Happy introverts know that they will not necessarily lead others by talking and commanding attention. However, they know they can lead by example, by giving the world what they think is missing.
Just like Einstein, Rosa Parks, Barack Obama, Lady Gaga, and Elon Musk, happy introverts have the courage to do their own things, their own way.
Question to become a happy introvert: What do you think the world is missing? What do you stand for? How can you lead others toward a better life in your own beautiful way?
Maxime Lagacé is the founder of wisdomquotes.com.
Maxime started collecting quotes in 2004 after he lost his girlfriend in a car accident.
In search of meaning, he dived into the self-improvement world, psychology, and trail running. His goal was to understand his pain, his depression, his fears, his lack of motivation and inspiration.
He now shares his passion for quotes and beautiful words on his website. To learn more about him, visit WisdomQuotes at wisdomquotes.com/about/.
The Corporate Introvert: How to Lead and Thrive with Confidence is available now
This book compiles stories and strategies to help introverts embrace their true selves and empower themselves to champion meetings, networking, and team leadership with the strengths & passions that reside at your core.
Whether you are a frustrated introverted veteran of corporate culture, a new or aspiring corporate leader, or even an extrovert seeking to best collaborate with a more diverse workplace, The Corporate Introvert can make an immediate difference in your work life, your level of confidence, and your personal joy.
I will be acquiring a new left knee 🦴 next week but will return on January 26th with a new blog😊, Views of a Broken Man Who Just Scraped 🔪By 😅. Have a wonderful week!