Introvert Myth - Why Are Introverts Perceived as AntiSocial?
The words, social introvert, might seem like an oxymoron to some
people. The truth is that most introverts are social but because we
might be social differently than extroverts, we get labeled antisocial.
So what's going on?
We're aiming for meaningful conversation. Since we get energy from internally, we just don't go on and on in conversations, in particular conversations with a good deal of small talk. As an introvert I'm choosy about my friends and tend to gravitate to ones can hang in with a deep intellectual, interesting or even controversial conversation. My energy levels drop if I have to stay too long in chit chat.
We're looking for deep relationships. One extrovert (my husband), one introvert (me) are seemingly social butterflies in their own way. We've both been in sales for 30 years. When my husband attends a networking event - it's usually more often, more people and a collection of more business cards. On those less frequent times I do network purposefully, I sometimes go with him, seek out just the people I want to meet and come up with fewer business cards.
There's the social butterfly and the honey bee. The social life of a honey bee is a solitary one. And yet, scientists study their behavior because of how well they work together, pollinate and play a critical and essential role to agriculture as a whole. The bees work tirelessly. If you find yourself wanting to have alone time instead of joining the crowd after work for a little happy hour, certainly an extroverted sanctioned event, you can absolutely take in the happy hour. If the honey bee can do it - and lead a satisfying solitary life, then so can introverts.
Are some introverts anti-social? Maybe; you might call them a loner. But then again, I bet you have also seen and been around anti-social extroverts.
Let's drop the labels.
Even in those cursory meetings with chit-chat and small talk that people, mainly those with an extroversion preference, there's many times an intention. The intention is to - develop and deepen the connection. The chit-chat path may take a turn and then, there is - meaningful conversation and deep relationships. But oh wait, that was the introvert's intention from the start!
Why do people say introverts are anti-social: because we do social differently.
That's really all it is.