If you’re anything like me, your Friday nights (and weekends in general) look a little something like this: sitting on the couch with pizza while watching an episode of House Hunters that you’ve definitely seen 3 times before but you can’t remember which house they chose so you watch it again. Very rarely will you catch me hanging out with my friends on a Friday night during the school year. This might sound crazy to some people but to me, there’s nothing better than a night in after a long week of being around people constantly. If I’m sounding super introverted right now it’s because I am. I am the most introverted introvert that I know. Ever since I can remember, I’ve never really been a lonely person and actually found solitude to be a crucial factor in the art of achieving a good state of mind. Some of you are probably thinking I’m crazy but I know a fair few of you are like “YES!! ME TOO!!” Whichever side you’re on, I want you to know that introversion isn’t a bad thing. Despite the fact that we live in a society in which extroversion is the norm, the norm isn’t always the unequivocal answer.
For introverts like myself, I don’t think there’s anything more daunting that the high school social scene. I spent the first two years of high school wondering why my social circle seemed relatively small and why going out on a Friday night just didn’t appeal to me. I felt so opposite from so many of my peers and hadn’t yet put my finger on why I felt a little different. I had heard the word “introvert” but had never really looked into it until a little over a year ago. Little did I know how much simply knowing more about introversion would help me feel less like a weirdo. There’s something comforting and empowering about knowing there’s other people who feel the same way as you. In my eyes, being introverted or extroverted doesn’t make you better or worse than the next person. The important thing is to embrace who your, yourself are while also appreciating others who may not be the same as you. This post isn’t meant to disparage extroverts because we all know how fun extroverts can be. BUT I know how hard it can be to exist in society as “the quiet girl.” I also know that being an introvert can sometimes make you feel a bit uncomfortable with yourself and might leave you wondering if there’s anything good about being this way. The good news is that there are SO MANY things that make introverts like myself wonderfully unique which is why I’ve composed this post. This isn’t meant to put anyone into a box, as I know there can be so many variations of introversion. Essentially, this is an introvert appreciation post where I will list a few reasons why introverts are so amazing (based on my own experiences & opinions). This one is for you, my fellow introverts.
- It’s hard to feel lonely. This may not seem that great but think about how convenient it is to know that you can do almost everything on your own and not feel bad about it. You can be that cool, independent person who can do anything and everything on your own without needing to constantly surround yourself with other people. Pretty cool. Pretty convenient.
- You have a small social circle but it’s probably full of the most amazing people in the world. This is personally my favorite part about being an introvert. I’ve always unintentionally kept my social circle small. As I’m quite a deep person, I enjoy good conversations with one or two people at a time and I respect the fact that that’s not for everyone. Something I’ve learned to do is to appreciate my friends and the depth to which we get to know each other instead of wondering why I can’t make more friends. I don’t perceive it as a lack of friends, I perceive it as an abundance of deep connections with people who have my back, just as I have theirs. It’s all about your mindset, friends.
- You might not say much but when you do, people will want to listen because it’s probably pretty insightful. I’ve never been someone who says something for the sake of saying it. As vain as it sounds, I like to carefully curate my thoughts before I shoot my hand up in class. Overthinking? Maybe. But I think society needs a balance between talkative people and individuals of very few words and introverts can provide such balance.
- When it does come to social situations, introverts tend to be really good listeners. This is linked to the point above in the sense that introverts might not always have something to say which means they’re hanging on your every word and really trying to process what you’re saying. So many times in a group setting, I don’t even realize that I haven’t said anything in a while simply because I’m so busy listening to what other people are saying. Some people still think it’s weird but it’s so natural for me to sit quietly and listen to people that I don’t even think twice when I’m doing it.
- There are so many well respected people who have done amazing things despite their introversion. Take for example Rosa Parks, Eleanor Roosevelt, Emma Watson, and so many others who haven’t let their introversion determine what they can do. In an interview, one of my favorite people ever, Emma Watson stated,
“It’s interesting, because people say things to me like, ‘It’s really cool that you don’t go out and get drunk all the time and go to clubs,’ and I’m just like, I mean, I appreciate that, but I’m kind of an introverted kind of person just by nature, it’s not like a conscious choice that I’m making necessarily. It’s genuinely who I am,”
“Have you seen Quiet by Susan Cain? … It discusses how [extroverts] in our society are bigged up so much, and if you’re anything other than an [extrovert] you’re made to think there’s something wrong with you. That’s like the story of my life. Coming to realize that about myself was very empowering, because I had felt like Oh my god, there must be something wrong with me, because I don’t want to go out and do what all my friends want to do.”