I’m an introvert who would love to be an extrovert.
- Go to conferences and stand to one side in the corner?
- Hate cocktail parties full of strangers?
- Hold your close friends close and seek no more?
- Spend most of your time having a conversation with yourself in your head?
- Hate being put on the spot but come up with killer ideas after everyone has gone!
Well that means you are likely to be an introvert. It’s hard to describe and it gets confused with shyness. It’s not the same thing.
Also introverts can confuse others by acting like an extrovert. I love public speaking. I love getting on stage and sharing the conversations I have in my head. I can also appear to and occasionally actually be amazingly sociable!
So why am I sharing. Because like all issues of diversity including gender, race, age and so on, being an introvert can lead to you being misunderstood and more importantly for patient safety, silenced, not given a voice and not heard.
If you fear speaking out. I am with you.
If you are in a leadership role (of course we all are) think about how you can help everyone including quiet, introverted souls. Give them space and time to share. Don’t force it. Just care and ask the right questions and you will be amazed at what you hear.
I am an introvert who is trying hard to not want to be an extrovert!