I am an introvert. I used to think I was shy. And maybe in some ways I am shy. But I’m by definition, also an introvert.
I love spending time alone, I recharge by being by myself, and dealing with crowds, even people that I know well, exhausts me. Simple things like sending an email to more than two people, or attending a group outing with more than two attendees…stress me out and cause me a great deal of anxiety. I make myself small and quiet to detract attention from myself. Even at my own wedding, I did not want people to focus on me.
But my mother taught me at a young age that I had to push through situations like these, and over the years I have learned tricks to get me through. Even when I feel dizzy. Even when I want to vomit. Even when my blood pressure shoots through the roof. I push through and apparently many people don’t even notice exactly how miserable I am in the spotlight.
So most people laugh when I tell them I’m an introvert or that I hate non-intimate groups or that I truly do not enjoy being around people that I don’t know well. In their eyes, they see a person who adapts to crowds effortlessly.
With that said, becoming a blogger and wrangling social media requires stepping outside of my comfort zone each and every time I hit publish. I agonize over every single picture and every single post. I inspect every miniscule pixel and weighing every pro and con of posting. Many times, after hours of adjusting and editing and filtering, I just delete the post entirely. I have hundreds of pics from 2021 alone that never made it to an IG post or story, because I just could not calm my nerves enough to push the post button.
And don’t get me started on being a business owner that suffers from Imposter Syndrome. A business owner that has to exude a certain confidence, that has to make the ask every day for people to buy my products. A business owner that has to generate captions and ads, and constantly engage in the world of social media, because that is the way of business nowdays. There’s not any room for an introvert in a world where reels and stories and lives and tik toks are the way to find your potential customer, engage with them without being pushy, promote your product and keep your business relevant.
My comfort zones are close and tight. Self-promotion is hard. Asking for someone’s attention is anxiety-inducing. So every time I post a blog post or story or picture or reel, I am an introvert that has stepped far outside of my comfort zone.
Are you an introvert? How do you step outside of your comfort zone?