There are so many misconceptions about being an introvert; the most common being that introverts are ineffective leaders or completely antisocial. But what many don’t know is that introversion v. extraversion has less to do with how shy or antisocial someone is and more to do with how people draw their energies.

“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” – Carl Jung

The Myers-Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI) is a useful personality tool to help improve how we view and interact with others.

Photo Credit: Jan Dillis
Photo: Jan Dillis

Introverts gain their energy internally, which explains why social settings can be a bit draining with little to no time to recharge. On the other hand, extroverts recharge their energies more in social situations. But no matter where you fall on the MBTI, we could all learn to use our results to our advantage within our daily interactions. However, it can get a bit deeper than what’s on the surface; the MBTI is more complex as you delve further into the tool. For example, an introvert can exhibit some extroverted qualities (and vice versa).

Photo Credit: Createherstock
Photo: Createherstock

1. Independent

Introverts are completely okay with rolling solo and completely enjoy their own company. In the workplace, they generally require little-to-no supervision and tend to process information internally. Introverts are totally in their element working individually and will, more often than not, get the job done well, independently.

2. Excellent collaborators

Photo Credit: Startup Stock Photos
Photo: Startup Stock Photos

Introverts are the gems of collaborations, especially in smaller, intimate groups. At times, they might downplay their strengths externally, which results in their actual abilities being underestimated. You will find that if you clear the airspace and actually give introverts a solid chance to weigh-in on a discussion, they will bring some pretty interesting ideas to the table. Introverts want and need to be heard but will likely not jump out into a sea of extroverts who seem to be dominating a conversation (unless there is an urgency).

3. Tendency to maintain long-term relationships

Introverts are great friends to have and prefer smaller social circles, which makes for more tight-knit relationships to nurture. They are generally perceived as more loyal as they seek to develop genuine friendships and strong bonds, as opposed to numerous casual acquaintances and larger social circles.

4. Ability to keep the focus

Photo Credit: Createherstock
Photo: Createherstock

Introverts work well in quiet workspaces and can focus on one thing for longer periods of time. They are locked in and moving on their own agenda, which might help with increased productivity.

5. Great listeners

Introverts are often given a bad rap for being anti-social, but they are pretty calculated, choosing to think before they speak or act. They can also become uncomfortable when asked to respond on-demand, needing extra time to actually process information. It can take some time for introverts to survey the climate and people. Therefore, don’t expect them to volunteer a lot of information upfront but instead to be a great listening ear. And once an introvert gets out of their comfort zone, it makes for some really interesting conversation!

So there, introverts are amazing in their own right. Some might call them mysterious or intriguing, but I’m willing to be they’re just in deep thought or listening intently.

What does your MBTI say about how you draw your energy? How have you used it to your advantage? Let us know in the comments below.

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