It longs feels as though introverts have faced an uphill battle having to work that little bit harder for workplace success or push themselves out of their comfort zone that little bit more. The tide does seem to be turning in favor of the introvert or at least their personality types are becoming better understood and respected but the battle is not yet won. That said if you consider yourself to be an introvert by nature and find the working palace a little daunting here are some top tips to follow to help you stand up to your extroverted counterparts.
Choose your specialization carefully
This may not be applicable to all career choices but there will be many that you can apply this logic to. Using the example of a lawyer you can see this in practice. You may be desperate to practice law, you may have a wonderful legal brain, or just thoroughly enjoy the subject but your introverted nature worries you, as does the prospects for standing up in court or facing hard negotiations with your professional counterparts. If so, being an injury or car or truck accident attorney may not be for you but that doesn’t mean the legal profession isn’t. Explore your options carefully. You can still be a first-class lawyer without having to enter a hotly contentious aspect of the law. Areas such as conveyancing, shipping or, wills and probate all require the use of a fine legal brain but without the contentious nature. Instead, it will allow you to do your job effectively from your desk and commonly, via written communication.
Make small talk your new best friend
As an introvert, the prospect of arranging a lunch date or after-work drinks with colleagues may not be all too appealing and that is fine however it is important that you don’t ignore your colleagues completely. Small talk may not be your thing but if you are not going to socialize outside of the working hours then try to make a small effort with small talk. Having a working relationship with your colleagues and superiors is of great benefit to your career so start small by making small talk in the workplace for a few minutes a day. You don’t have to get to divulge your life’s work but make the effort to ask a few questions and enquire about their day. It will go a long way to improving your workplace relationships and you never know, it may even develop into friendships.
Keep going until you make it
You may not feel overly confident but no one needs to know that. Don’t play the extroverts at their own game and fake it until you make it. Do things your own way. Start with your body language. You can do this by keeping your posture straight, maintaining eye contact, and holding your head high. This is a great way to display confidence and leave a great impression. Your non-verbal communication can play a big part in how others see you and indeed how you feel yourself. Think about it, if you are timid and slouching this will have a knock-on effect on how you feel and act, help yourself by keeping your body language confident and notable. It may take a little practice but you will get there in the end and the difference in your confidence levels will be astounding.
When it comes to verbal communication this too can be an introvert’s worst nightmare and the best thing you can do is to practice. Start small, no one is suggesting your start public speaking right away. A great place to start is with one or two other people you are familiar and comfortable with, put yourself into a situation where you are required to make conversation or join in with others. The more you practice and the more confidence you gain will allow you to then start increasing your numbers. You may never completely rid yourself of a bit of fear public speaking but it is like anything, the more you do it the more confidence you will have and the easier the process will become. Not only that most people experience unease around public speaking. Remember you are your own worse critic and no one is judging you the way you judge yourself, so try to be kind to yourself and don’t view yourself too harshly.