Are you an introvert? Is social networking stressful to you? We live in a society in which technology has allowed us less physical interaction with others. This can hinder you in the future when you are trying to rub elbows with top influencers in your industry or that one individual that can help your project reach superstar status.
Society tends to tell us that extroverted individuals are more capable of getting a job, will be liked more by other peers, and are simply a lot more fun to be around. However, this can’t be any further from the truth. This causes us introverts to have to wear that extroverted mask to have a better shot at the same opportunities as our extroverted counterparts.
In The Washington’s Post’s Introverts tend to be better CEOs — and other surprising traits of top-performing executives, a 10-year study called the CEO Genome Project was conducted by economists at two business schools. The study concluded that more than half of the CEO’s studied who performed better in the minds of investors and directors were introverts.
Still, this does not stop some of the biases that we face on job interviews or other events that make it hard for us to adjust. If this is your struggle, check out these 5 steps that can help you toward a more confident you!
- Accept the fact that you’re an introvert. Shout it out from the highest mountaintop! Be proud of who you are. This in no way, shape, or form means that you can’t be as successful as anyone else. Some of the most successful businessmen are introverts (see Quiet Revolution’s Three Introverted CEOs and What You Can Learn From Them).
- Look your best. Dress up more often. There’s something about when I dress my best that gives me the extra boost of confidence that I need. Simply knowing that I look good can give me the self-esteem needed to strike up that conversation in which otherwise I may not have had the confidence to do.
- Take more risks. Write down all the things that you wished you had the confidence to do but, couldn’t or struggled to do so. Go to a random bar out of town and sing karaoke there. That way, you won’t be consumed with the fear of making a good impression in front of strangers because 9 times out of 10, nobody there even knows who you are. Start with smaller risks on your list that you feel would be easier to overcome and then work your way up to much bigger risks.
- Engage in more hobbies/activities in your comfort zone. Be sure to include time to do all the things that you enjoy doing. This will give you a sense of relaxation in that you are pursuing something that you truly feel comfortable doing and, that you can just be yourself.
- Create a vision board. Knowing what you want in life and having a visual representation of this can motivate you to overcome some of the things that are a hinderance (Pinterest has really cool ideas!). As I was driving yesterday, I heard a woman speak on the radio of how she posts her vision board literally everywhere, so that she is constantly reminded of the goals that she has set for herself. She spoke of hanging her vision board in her office, on her refrigerator, she even went as far as taking a picture of it and setting it as her wallpaper on her phone.
Winning the war of introversions takes practice, but is well worth the effort as the result is increased confidence and self-esteem. Don’t ever let anyone and or anything prevent you from waking up and feeling good about yourself. Allow yourself to face the world with confidence and security and the knowing that no feeling of introversion can come in your way of achieving your desires.