PREVIOUS: Growth #2

SITEs: 56 Best Jobs for Introverts, by sub-type

BOOKs: The Highly Sensitive Person ~ Elaine Aron
The Biological Basis of Personality ~Hans J. Eysenck


Adopt a “growth mindset”
It’s the positive belief that you can get better at your chosen activities, rather than that your abilities are limited & ‘fixed’, so : “I can get better at networking.” There’s lots of research that shows people with a growth mindset are more successful. Recognize you don’t always need to be outstanding at everything, only use the knowledge you have & persevere. “Progress not Perfection” !! (More….)

Find ways to function well in the world that doesn’t require acting like an E.
You can collaborate with others in ways that don’t over-stimulate you. Take your time to reflect & digest, accepting your need to mull things over for a long time before taking action. Understand yourself well enough so you know when it’s best to go with your natural tendency, & times when it’s best to (temporarily) override it.

EXP: DO something you’ve been wanting to for a while, rather than thinking some more. Procrastination may be insecurity, or worry about future performance & social pressures that can come with success. Instead of obsessing about potential problems, consider all the possible wonderful outcomes. It’ll be okay if you “Just do it, but do it gently”. (Review BIS)

Plan ahead to rest after an event
Too often, Is get sucked in to over-dong social events, to please family & friends – who are mostly Es! In the after-math of exhaustion you may decide to stay home from now on.
Instead, it would be better to not isolate by setting a preferred time-limit on group activities. Let people know what you need – & stick to it. If you think they’ll be hurt or judge you for leaving early, explain what it means to be an I, & then take care of yourself.
Always PLAN ahead for down-time after each event to recharge your batteries.

Go beyond your Comfort Zone
Naturally, you’ll be able to connect with others more easily when doing something you enjoy. However, Is are often criticized for sticking to ‘boring’ activities (lectures, book groups, quiet dinners….). While these are actually great ways to meet like-minded people, it’s okay to go a little out of your comfort zone as well, by trying different kinds of events, as well as the way you interact.

At any large event where you don’t know everyone, you’re natural tendency is to hang back & just listen, rather than including yourself in conversations. You have a lot to say – take a small risk & add something you know about, or ask an interesting question. You may connect with someone as interesting as yourself!

Practice Small Talk
Is often think small talk incredibly useless, even tiring. Their mind & emotions work differently, preferring to stick to ‘big’ concepts & ideas. That’s okay, but small talk is a part of  greasing the wheels of social interactions. Most people are not ready or willing to ‘go deep’ at first or second meeting – which is appropriate. It take time to get to know others, & that takes sharing ‘light’ interests first – to find compatibilities, & where you’re human like everyone else. If you do get along, then you can have the kinds of conversations you enjoy.

Quality vs Quantity
Es tend to judge Is by the number of friends they have, but Is truly prefer spending quality time with one or two close ones. Their friendships have a different quality than that of most Es.  Uninformed people try to push Is into getting “out there more”, which adds to the unfair treatment & pain they grew up with. If you feel okay with the number of friends you have, ignore well-meaning people who will make you feel bad.  There’s no right or wrong, only individual preferences.

NEXT: Parenting – Dos & Don’ts

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