If you’re an introvert, you’ve probable had people ask you questions like…
-“Are you usually this quiet?”
-“You’ll only succeed in life if you speak up.”
-“Come on… you should go out sometimes”
-“He’s always by himself.”
Speaking as a confirmed introvert myself, these are the comments I’ve heard many times. Often people consider you shy. And sometimes they’re right, but not always.
Introversion is often frowned upon, and misunderstood. As an introvert, I can’t tell you the number of times society has mistaken my demeanor for something else. I’m either too cold, arrogant, or just weird.
In a world where attention is given to those who are loud, introverts often get overlooked for their louder extroverted counterparts.
But being introverted isn’t a bad thing. There’s actually a lot of benefits that introverts natural abilities can take advantage of.
Top 10 Benefits of Being Introverted (Backed By Science)
1. Compassionate Leadership
When introverts take in everything that their environment gives.
This ability to connect with their environment makes an introverted leader notice details and make logical connections that others may miss.
Introverted leaders are equally empathetic, resonate with, and encourage their subordinates to contribute their ideas.
Introverted leaders are also good listeners and always welcome different views and new ideas.
Introverts are quiet all right, but we possess a “superpower”. Observation skills.
We all multi-task everyday, but the human brain wasn’t built for multitasking efficiently. introverts are typically quite because their focus and attention is often dedicated to observing their environment.
Other people in a meeting or any setting might talk and process things out loud. But, an introvert who seems to be sitting quietly is actually observing and reading the room.
They soak in many details, an ability that can tell them tell what someone else is thinking just by their body language and other cues.
3. Introverts Form Quality Friendships
No other friend is as loyal, committed, and attentive as an introvert.
Extroverts have lots of friends, but introverts tryically have fewer friends with stronger bonds. This is because introverts are selective about who they bring into their lives. They feel like being around other people with negative energy drains them of their energy.
For this reason, most introverts would rather be alone or keep a few close and trusted friends to invest their time and energy into.
4. Good Decision-Making
Surprisingly, an introvert’s brain is wired differently.
According to a study in the Journal of Neuroscience, introverts tend to possess a more prominent and denser gray matter in the prefrontal cortex than extroverts.
The prefrontal cortex is the brain area that’s responsible for abstract thought and decision-making.
This explains why introverts are more likely to devote time and energy to ponder over something before making a decision.
5. Not Prone to Impulse-Related Distress
An introvert’s brain composition can also explain why they are less likely to engage in dumb accidents and impulsive or risky behaviors.
Their contemplative nature, ability to internalize things and think before speaking or acting protect them against potentially harmful events.
It includes alcoholism, gambling, or saying something they didn’t mean.
6. Introverts Handle Sleep Deprivation Better
Excessive social stimulation can wear out parts of the brain responsible for wakefulness and attention, increasing the need for sleep.
Since extroverts tend to have more social stimulation, they tire out more easily than introverts. They can’t handle situations that require being awake all night.
This means that when doing something that requires less sleep, introverts are arguably better at developing resistance to the need for sleep more than extraverts.
7. Thoughtful Networking
Introverts hate putting themselves out there. They struggle with marketing, socializing, or converging in large groups where the goal is to meet, shake hands, talk, and make first impressions.
But then, introverts understand that networking is not only about talking to as many people as possible.
Thank goodness for these people’s natural prowess at making meaningful connections. They only pick a handful of people to interact with, and it leaves lasting impacts.
8. There’s Space for Creativity
There’s a lot of evidence that suggests that solitude induces boredom, which is a great ingredient for creativity.
You normally won’t find an introvert at a party. But you can try a corner, mostly a table for one and furthest from the crowd. They are either knitting yarn or finishing a book.
Introverts will create their own boredom by constantly avoiding interruptions.
These people are more comfortable spending time alone, allowing them to be more creative than the busy and happy-go-lucky people.
9. Health Check
Introverts are attuned to the need to recharge. They recharge by meditating, doing yoga, or taking a long peaceful sleep, activities that rejuvenate the body.
An introvert is also likely to eat less than an extroverted person, reducing their chances of obesity.
According to research, introverts rely on external cues like the type of food and size of the bowl when serving themselves.
On the other hand, introverts tune in to their internal cues to determine if they should eat and how much they should eat, curtailing casual overeating.
10. Academic Performance
Stephen Hawking once said that “Quiet people have the loudest minds.”
Introverts excel in their academics because they are intellectually and emotionally gifted.
What can you expect from people that are usually more interested in ideas and theories that another person would find boring or weird, anyway?
They also tend to be big picture thinkers, making them employ more critical thinking, increasing their chances at good academic performance.
That’s why mostly, the “uncool” and quiet boy in the class is usually a huge nerd.
Top 10 Most Successful Introverts (Past and Present)
You wouldn’t expect industry celebrities like Barack Obama or Mark Zuckerberg to be introverted, right?
It’s understandable, especially because we (society) associate success with “being loud” and “out there.”
But, some successful people have come out to teach people that being extroverted or introverted isn’t what dictates success. They include:
1. Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein is among the world’s most revered physicists and most noble and successful introverts ever to exist
One of his famous sayings, ” The monotony and solitude of a quiet life stimulate the creative mind,” suggests that solitude is a vital ingredient for creativity.
Perhaps, his tendency to keep to himself and preference for a solitary lifestyle is why he was awarded 1921’s Nobel Prize for Physics.
2. Elon Musk
Everyone describes Elon Musk as the “next Steve Jobs.” No one can imagine for a moment that such a trailblazer was once a reserved and introverted engineer.
Elon Musk of Tesla Inc. doesn’t shy about letting people into his past. He shared his troubles with public speaking and how it took him lots of courage to walk onto a stage and speak clearly.
According to him, public speaking is t’s something he had to learn as a company head.
3. Barack Obama
Leading a whole country seems to be something an introvert wouldn’t ever wish to find themselves doing.
But, former President Barack Obama, who admits that he is more productive in solitude, proves that introverts can lead just like the outspoken.
Of course, he has faced criticism for his aloof demeanor, but Barack Obama continues to lead while respecting his introversion.
He has continually demonstrated an introvert’s natural capacity for discernment and thoughtful communication even in retirement.
4. Emma Watson
Actress Emma Watson identifies herself as naturally introverted and does not like partying or clubbing.
During her 2013 interview with Rookie, Watson talks about how she once felt like something was wrong with her.
She only realized how being an introvert isn’t a bad thing and how it can actually positively impact the world upon reading Susan Cain’s “Quiet.”
5. Hillary Clinton
Unlike her husband Bill, Hillary is introverted.
Even after stepping outside her husband’s shadow as a former America’s First Lady, holding other notable positions like Secretary of State, and running for Presidency, she is still reserved in nature.
And Hillary Clinton has paid for that. She has been criticized for being overly guarded and not a warm person.
6. Bill Gates
Microsoft founder, the richest man globally, and a notable philanthropist can be outspoken, but he started as a loner and an introvert.
Bill Gates admits using the extroverts around him to complement his skills and shortcomings. He even urges introverts to combine their strengths with extroverts and exploit both skillsets to succeed.
Although Bill Gates is introverted, he’s fiercely unshy, something to remind you that people can have both extroverted and introverted traits existing simultaneously.
7. Marissa Mayer
Marissa Mayer might be Yahoo’s CEO, but she believes in quiet leadership. She describes herself as “just geeky and shy, and I like to code…”
Mayer has always insisted that the spotlight isn’t her style even after the modern media continues to paint her introverted.
She is a shy introvert who has had to discipline herself to deal with her personality.
Mayer has often forced herself to tolerate situations that make her uncomfortable, even if she sometimes wants to run and hide.
8. Mark Zuckerberg
You might not understand how a founder of the most successful social network in the world can be reserved, but Mark Zuckerberg is a typical introvert.
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s COO, told the New York Times that the social network’s founder “ is shy and introverted and he often does not seem very warm to people who don’t know him, but he is warm.”
9. Michael B. Jordan
Michael Jordan is arguably the greatest athlete of all time and an outstanding basketballer on the court; you wouldn’t guess that he is introverted in the outside world.
However, despite his subdued personality, he has been able to accomplish a lot, including being the face of Nike!
10. Warren Buffett
If anyone wants proof that introverts can be successful businessmen globally, give them business mogul Warren Buffet, the Oracle of Omaha, as a classic example.
Buffett admits to having the “intellect for business” when he was starting. However, he still felt he lacked a business face.
So he took advantage of Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People” conferences and seminars to help with that!
The world has grown to favor the boisterous and the loudest individuals so much that if you are quiet, reserved, with a serious demeanor, then you are weird and most probably a serial killer.
But let’s be clear—introverts aren’t flawed and don’t need to be fixed. And we’re not serial killers (most us).
Being introverted certainly is not a bad thing, we just don’t like crowds, making speeches, introducing ourselves to strangers, partying, and responding to questions like, “Why are you so quiet?”
And, yes- the world needs introverts just as much as extroverts. Without us, it would all be noise.
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