Although, I never always thought that it was!
But hang on, before you think that this post is only for introverts, it’s not. This one is about limiting beliefs, and whether you are an introvert, extrovert or ambivert, we all have limiting beliefs – even if you don’t know it yet.
Back to my introversion:)
For so long, I believed that my introversion made me less valuable to the world at large.
When I reflect on my history, I wasn’t unhappy. I had a happy childhood, but I had this very limiting belief that my purpose was less important than the more extroverted people in my life.
The wonderful thing about that situation is that I was teaching myself resilience from a very early age. I really did get on with doing what made my heart happy.
Aha! There is the first power of my introversion!
An introvert in a big noisy family
My corporate career
It took a great deal of my energy and bravado to get through a day at the office. I was exposed to an open-plan design, and so many colleagues just dropping by my desk.
Not their fault, of course, that is how they are designed.
Similarly, my design as an introvert left me with very little energy at the end of the day. So when I wasn’t up for a drink out or socialising, I was often seen as the “party pooper.”
I started to become “ok” with this label.
Fantastically though, in this environment, I started to discover the amazing characteristics of the introverted personality. I first understood that introversion is fundamentally one thing – it’s how we use our energy. Secondly, I was just as capable and just as awesome as my more extroverted peers and colleagues.
As my career developed, I found myself in a wonderful position which included global travel. I felt like the luckiest person on the planet.
The pitfall, though, was that I would be responsible for a great deal of face-to-face training. Also, once a year, I was expected to train my colleagues at a mass event.
You can imagine my sheer panic!
Getting onto the plane for my first overseas business trip, I struggled as to how I would manage to speak in public. My brain went back and forth for the entire journey on what I was expected to do in the following week of meetings!
I was so scared!
As expected, there was a large turnout. My colleagues had come from all corners of the globe to listen to various updates that had taken place in the company.
I was in that line up to share updates on compliance training.
All my worry was well-placed because that trip turned out to be a massive failure!
I didn’t know the material well enough. I thought that I needed to be perfect. I thought I needed to know all of the answers.
However, what had the most profound impact on me was that I thought that a more extroverted person, you know, someone great at speaking, would be far better for the job.
I didn’t know how I was going to move forward and add value in this space that, at the time, offered me so much personal growth. I knew and understood this growth potential, but it didn’t stop me from grappling with the prospect of letting myself out of my shell.
In retrospect, this failure was really awesome feedback for me to start to work on my limiting beliefs.
We have to take on our limiting beliefs head on!
It was obvious that if I continued with my train of thought on who I was as an introvert, it would have a massively negative effect on my life in the future.
So, it was time to take some positive steps towards my own personal development!
I considered how I got to that place, where I was. My inner place and my outer world that I was reacting to at the time.
This was the list I came up with. (I do love a checklist:)
Passion for adding value in a work space
A loving home that my parents created for me
When I started to reflect on my positive attributes in my character, I realised that I had totally let myself down. I also realised that if I were hard on myself with this realisation of letting myself down, I would regress even further.
After all, I am just an introvert. I wasn’t then, and I am not now incompetent in any way.