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Learning to extrovert

In today’s society extroversion is the expected behaviour. We are expected to be able to hold a conversation with anyone, work in groups, brainstorm at workshops and enjoy a good party. These things does not come naturally for everyone and for all introverts out there this require some training.

I have previously written about how I am an INTJ on the Myers-Briggs personality test. In fact, I am a strong introvert on the introvert-extrovert scale. You might not believe it if you met me because I have been working much on extroverting my thoughts and feelings.

Learning to extrovert has been important to me for several reasons. Not just for my own sake but primarily for other people’s sake. I will go through some of the most important reasons why I have felt it has been important to learn to extrovert.

As a leader it has been important for me to make the vision clear for my colleagues. I am getting better and extrovert my inner picture of where we are going in order to help them reach the same goal and work as a team.

It has also been important for me to communicate my expectations. It is easy to tell myself what expectations I have on others but unless I communicate it, it will only be wishes and not something that anyone can act on.

It has been important for me to learn to extrovert my feelings. My inner feelings is not something that I share easily but for those close to me, it is important that they know when I like or dislike something or if I am happy, sad or angry. This is especially important with my wife and my children but also with my colleagues to know that their work is appreciated.

Social Competence
Lastly, it has been important for me to learn how to be more extroverted in order to improve my social competence. No-one enjoy a quite person on a party and for everyone’s benefit I have learnt to hold a conversation even though I can feel it is a bit shallow sometimes.

So even though I am happy with my own company and my natural tendency is still to jump and hide behind a tree when I see someone I know, I realise that this is not very helpful; neither for myself nor those around me. So I keep challenging myself to interact with people and play the social game. I believe I become a better person because of it.