Contrary to popular belief, I am not an extrovert. I am really about 60/40 Introvert vs. Extrovert. I prefer to keep to myself and am not an overtly loud person. HOWEVER, get me into a situation where I am comfortable and that changes. Comfort to me is an environment where I feel one of two things; I have something to offer or I have something to learn. Those feelings make me comfortable and I am more extroverted in those types of environments.
Now, without that type of situation setup, that doesn’t mean I’m necessarily uncomfortable but it does mean that I’m in my Introvert stage. That means I’m not looking for interaction, I don’t want to engage with anyone, and I need nothing from anyone. I’m really just in my own zone, thinking wild things in my head. Perfect example is when I go grocery shopping. I am not there to interact with anyone or make friends or influence people.
For the longest time I always thought that maybe I was a fake. Because there were times I was the life of the party and other times I just wanted to blend into the wall and be left alone. If I wasn’t crazy then I was most likely bi-polar maybe. People even told me that I was fake, so I had to believe them right? I felt fraudulent, but it was who I was, and I couldn’t deny that or believe it was wrong…it was just me.
The more I invested in personal development and growth, I really got to understand my personality type (Advocate) and what that meant about me. Finally I got answers as to why I reacted and acted the way I did. I learned not everything about someone is black and white, we don’t all fit into boxes. I finally felt understood and not crazy. That is pretty empowering.
I remember mentioning this to my mother. I remember her saying “Well Cayci you never really tried hard at everything.” The reality was, she was right. But most importantly, I FINALLY realized that that was OKAY! I didn’t try hard at everything, especially when it was something I wasn’t interested in. Sorry folks, but I’m not going to try hard at Trigonometry. I hate it, don’t understand it, and it didn’t provoke any passion for me. However I loved playing the Cello, and I practiced it intently. I was passionate about it and I was talented, so THAT I tried hard at.
I guess the lesson was it’s okay to not go 100% with everything all the time. If it’s not for you, it’s not for you. As an adult I found out that I am not going to participate in activities where I don’t WANT to give 100% because that doesn’t work for me. There are people out there that will GRIND all.day.long doing something they absolutely hate. And they do it for beautiful and noble reasons. I am not that person. I do not get any fulfillment from that way of living. And that is OK.
So the answer to the title of this post “Can an Introvert be successful in a networking business?” YES! This whole idea that you need to be this social butterfly, cheerleader, or extreme extrovert to sell something is ridiculous and uninformed. And it really is chipping the shoulders of those that love their job, their product, their opportunity. It’s creating hesitation, guilt, and fear.
All you need to be successful is to be yourself. When you are really acting upon the real you, and that passion in your gut, you will be your best self. That is one that oozes love, passion, caring, and heart. It can come out in different ways too. It isn’t always heavy and emotional either. People can tell if you are real, enjoyable, and honest. People aren’t stupid, they know when they are being led on by someone fake.
An Introvert is extremely passionate and is typically more concerned with the path and journey rather than the end result, and this is phenomenal.
So I challenge you Introverts to find your “safe space” and what that means to you. My space where I feel safe and comfortable is when I feel I have something to offer or learn. What is yours? When do you feel most extroverted in your personality?
Let us know!