What Shapes Introverts

quietInfluenceHere is the rest of Chapter 1 of “Quiet Influence; The Introvert’s Guide to Making a Difference” by Jennifer Kahnweiler.  She’s an extrovert who does a lot of coaching of introverts.  I thought that might be an interesting perspective.  (Check out yesterday’s blog for Roadblocks to Quiet Influence.)

Kahnweiler says that we can become great influencers by embracing our introverted nature.  I like that idea.  It’s a lot less painful than pretending to be an extrovert.  She talks about energy drains and recharging, and the difference between shyness and introversion.  She ends the chapter by listing introvert characteristics.  I’ll let you read the book for more detail, but here is her list.  See what resonates with you.

Characteristics that Shape Introverts:

  • Embrace solitude
  • Think first, talk later
  • Hold emotions inside
  • Focus on depth rather than the superficial
  • Let their fingers do the talking (meaning we’d rather email than get on the phone, etc.
  • Act low-key
  • Keep private matters… private

What do you think?  Did she create an accurate list?

Next time:  Chapter 2, The Six Strengths of Quiet Influencers



 Hi.  I’m Chris.  I’m an introvert.  All of my postings tend to reflect my introvert world in some way or another.  Join me and like minded introverts for a special slant on the world.

28 thoughts on “What Shapes Introverts

  1. Love that list, Chris. She’s onto us, huh! I’ve started reading Quiet, in a World that Can’t Stop Talking and will addd this suggestion to my reading list. Thank you for the post 🙂

  2. I’m enjoying this series…the list is impeccable. Also on your last post, what resonated with me is ‘being talked over’ as if you are invisible. I have experienced that a lot and thought it was just because other people were more important. Now I realize it is just rude. Thanks for these posts!

  3. I can relate to all of these. I always email rather than use the phone.

    The other day, I shared a little bit (very little) about my college days with my co-workers and wished immediately that I could have taken it back. It was only about what major I’d started with; nothing racy. But they were surprised and I felt so exposed. I’m a very private person, so this drained me.

  4. Very interesting, when I was a child and the phone would ring, I would run and hide and make sure someone else would answer it.

  5. I resent how people think all introverts are shy.
    Also, I do prefer the emails, and especially text or instant messaging. IM’s seem to have been replaced by Skype, which is much more draining.

  6. 7 over 7, 100% nailed me completely, Chris! I totally love not knowing arabic here in egypt, I don’t have to answer the door or the phone, or make small talk, lol, just give me my solitude and my tablet and I’m happy! Thanks for another great post, and hi to Cee, too, I never get over there because I’m so busy writing these days, yay! Best wishes on your new position, too! ♥♥♥ ;^)

  7. Two things have helped me, although I came to them rather late in life: learning that Introvert – Extravert is not either / or, but rather a line with one at each end. All of us are somewhere on that scale and our position can shift a bit depending on external factors. Too much stress or stimulation shifts us all towards being a bit more introverted, for example.

    The other thing was being given the assessment that goes with the business book, “Strengthsfinder”. Through that I discovered my top five (our of 34) strengths and then began to put that knowledge together with my personality traits from the Myers-Briggs assessments (also the related Keirsey assessments) I’ve done.

    Now I feel I understand myself so much better; I wish I’d had this knowledge when I was younger; life would have been very different.

    I hope my library has this book; thanks for the recommendation. I can really relate to the statement that people always think I’m too much or too little of a lot of things. Too intense, too serious, too intellectual, think way too much, etc., etc. Along with not fun enough, you need to get out more, you are not social enough, you don’t smile enough, you need to relax more, and so on and on . . . It’s funny when I step back a bit. Most of these comments come from people who are my friends and who seem unaware that I accept them as they are even while they try to change me so I will be ‘happier’. I know they mean well, but honestly . . . it feels like being left-handed used to feel, with this attitude that if we just put our minds to it we could be just like everyone else . . . in other words, extraverted . . . 🙂 Oh, well, I love ’em anyway. It was people at work who were the most challenging when they took that tone . . .

  8. Yes, all 7 describes me perfectly, with these 5 being standouts.

    Embrace solitude
    Hold emotions inside
    Let their fingers do the talking (meaning we’d rather email than get on the phone, etc).
    Act low-key
    Keep private matters… private

    I like spending time alone in my room with a book or playing with my phone (not chatting online) sometimes, and I cannot stand conflicts and confrontations so I don’t express my emotions enough, and I get nervous around phone calls for no reason so I prefer texts, and I don’t stand out, and I don’t like posting my life on Facebook. Such an introvert.

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