Being an introvert I understand that we don’t particularly like to thrust ourselves into the spotlight, bang our own drum, or shamelessly self-promote. As such, I feel our strengths as individuals and as a community can go unspoken. In thinking about this I decided that yes, I could go on about our innate sensitivity, our ability to think ourselves out of a problem and our great listening skills. But that would only tell half the story.
Here is my (still incomplete) list of why introverts are amazing.
- Introverts are contemplative creatures. We make gazing thoughtfully into a sunset look even more fabulous.
- We know how to entertain ourselves. In the event of a zombie apocalypse, introverts should be pretty well placed to amuse ourselves in between bursts of, you know, running for our lives.
- We don’t contribute noise to an already noisy planet. Did you know that noise continues to be the number one quality of life issue in New York City? Next time you see someone quietly reading a book on the subway, be sure to thank them. They’re doing their bit to improve your quality of life.
- We’re the real reason voicemail will always exist.
- We pay attention to our feelings. We don’t necessarily know what to do with those feelings all of the time but we’re a pretty self-aware bunch.
- We’re not attention hogs. Introverts generally prefer to stay out of the spotlight. Little known fact* – an introvert invented the phrase commonly used by law-enforcement which is “Move along, there’s nothing to see here.” This is the introverts mantra.
- We have a rich inner world. Imaginations run wild and superb books get written. J.K. Rowling anyone?
- We don’t suffer from weekend loneliness. We say “Bring it on!” Recently Grazia (UK) reported on the rise of weekend loneliness among single women. They tend to have a busy and active social/work life Monday to Friday but the weekend can be an endless void of nothing. To many introverts who are drained after a busy week of interaction, this sounds like heaven. Sorry.
- We value our privacy, therefore, we value other people’s too. As we tend not to open up until we’re comfortable (this can sometimes take years), we tend not to grill people on their lives either.
- Introverts truly, TRULY appreciate the freedom the internet has given us. Of all the inventions the world has seen, the internet is our champion. It allows us to order in anything we want, communicate without having to talk on a phone, and watch all those Supernatural episodes we missed the first time around.
- We understand the value of personal space. Introverts are easily spotted on public transport. We’re the ones making ourselves as small and quiet as possible so as not to draw attention from chatty types. All we ask is that our personal space is respected, please and thank you.
- Introverts can be super-observant, and are constantly processing stimuli to the point where it can be exhausting. This is when we tend to slip away from the party, the big networking event, or the film/blues/tattoo/insert your preference here festival to decompress.
- We’re great at keeping secrets. I mean, we only have two friends. Who are we going to blab to?
- Introverts give off an aura of composure and stability. It doesn’t matter that we’re quivering wrecks on the inside. No one needs to know that right?
- We’re great listeners. Well most of the time, except when we’re planning our exit strategy or wondering when the new season of Orange Is The New Black is coming out on Netflix.
- We’re quite adept at telling a white lie or two, but it’s okay because it’s for the greater good i.e. sparing people’s feelings. Can you imagine if we told the truth? “I can’t come to your party because I’d rather be at home watching The Gilmore Girls reruns with one fist jammed into a family size bag of Cheetos and the other wiping pizza grease off my chin.” It would be chaos.
*This may or may not be a fact.