Introverts and Intimacy: Busting the Myths

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Lily McCann has been a guest blogger here in the past. When she came to me with this post it struck a chord with me. Why you might ask, since it is somewhat out of the typical kind of relationship post you might read here. It’s because I could so totally relate.

I’ve been married just one time, for too many years to so without giving away my age which I loathe. It spoke deeply to me about me and my all out extrovert husband. I’m hoping you will like it:

Does being an introvert make dating and intimacy more difficult? There are many pre-conceived ideas and stereotypes concerning introverts and our intimate relationships, which may feed into a negative self-image and make connecting with people in an intimate way unnecessarily more difficult for introverts.

Relationships are often a minefield in any case, without worrying that an innate tendency towards introversion adds further complications. The popular perception of introverts, being by nature comfortable with their own space and less likely to feel a need for an intimate partner, is that they are also unlikely to find it easy to form intimate relationships, and that when they do so may find it more difficult to communicate openly with their partner. It’s also often asserted that, far from opposites attracting, a combination of introvert and extrovert within an intimate relationship is a disastrous mix. All this would seem to leave introverts out in the cold when it comes to the dating game.

However, recent research shows that this may be far from the case. A healthy dose of introversion may in fact be a beneficial factor when it comes to forming intimate relationships and certainly for making them last. Yes, even with an extrovert![Continue Reading...]

How Introverts Can Learn To Love What They Do

how-introverts-can-love-work

As introverts, we tend to keep to ourselves in large group settings. We like to talk with people we feel comfortable with, but we don’t enjoy making small-talk with people we don’t know. We like to stay out of the limelight. We dislike confrontation intensely.

So what does this mean when we’re stuck in a job with a boss we don’t necessarily get along with? What about when we feel that we just can’t contribute as much or don’t have enough control over our environment because we don’t feel comfortable voicing our opinions?

If you feel like your work is unfulfilling or stagnant, here are three ways to better love what you do, even if your coworkers, job description, or level of required social interaction is less than desirable.[Continue Reading...]

Can Acting Like an Extrovert Make You Happier?

acting-like-introvert-Girl-Reading-BookAn article written by Sumanthi Reddy a few months ago addresses the idea that introverts who act like extroverts will be happier. This article is based off of studies that show that extroverts are, on average, happier than introverts. However, what this article doesn’t address is that pretending to be something you’re not isn’t fair to you.

The Difference Between Extroverts and Introverts

Extroverts and introverts have two separate approaches when it comes to social interaction. Extroverts generally enjoy being surrounded by people and having a high-stimulus environment. Introverts, on the other hand, may prefer smaller gatherings with fewer stimuli.

A common misconception is introverts are shy and quiet — however, that’s not always true. When the topic suits their fancy or when they’re around people with whom they are comfortable, introverts may talk non-stop. So, the idea of acting like an extrovert seems strange because, in a way, introverts are perfectly capable of maintaining conversations with people and being around others.

Should Introverts Act Like Extroverts?[Continue Reading...]

What do Harvard Business School and Al Merhabian have to do with your myths?

Truth-liberatesFor ten years I traveled the USA and other countries, facilitating corporate training for companies vested in improved their management, sales and customer service skills. Many workshops I designed included skill sets like setting goal setting and communications skills. These were often backed up by research from the likes of Harvard Business School and Al Merhabian.

Other more recognized speakers often used studies as evidence in their programs. The problem was, as with many corporate trainers, it became apparent study results were not always from the study.

As a trainer, a listening skills section was included with a recognized and widely used assessment. I sought written permission from the creator to use it in my trainings and teachings going forward, and it lead me to discover some myths. Maybe you know of these two major claims:[Continue Reading...]

Small changes to slow down for big benefits

Joy-by-Marianne-WilliamsonIn preparing for the completion of writing my book, Communication Toolkit for Introverts, and move into other phases including collaborative marketing with the publisher, I started feeling: wait, slow down. Maybe you can relate to what I’m feeling. Work, work, work.

Why do we often brush aside what we’ve done to reach a milestone?

What could we do before moving forward, to stop and benefit from recognizing our achievement?

What small changes can we make going forward to change this habit to move right on without acknowledgement of accomplishment?

In my business coaching I’ve found many of us do, do, do and accomplish many things. But in our doing often don’t take time to appreciate ourselves. Isn’t that counter productive?

Inspired by a report of small steps that make a big difference in our life, for a few posts, here are some small changes I’m opting to do, to soak in some joy from the accomplishment before moving on. Hope you find it helpful and share your wisdom.[Continue Reading...]