There are different types of people in this world: introvert, extrovert, and ambivert. Being an introvert is a struggle that many people deal with. One third to one half of the population identifies as introverts They prefer to spend time alone to recharge their inner being, but are rarely lonely.
Although introverts may appear to be shy to some people, that is not always the case. Interacting with friends and family can be a joyous activity, but small talk and pointless conversations tend to decrease an introvert’s energy rapidly.
Introverts are homebodies. They think before they speak. They don’t enjoy the spotlight and have other traits that extroverts could never understand.
As an introvert myself, please never say these 5 things to me or any introvert.
#5 – “Why are you always on your phone?”
Sure, everyone is on their phones at least once a day, but for introverts it takes on a different meaning. To avoid the awkward small talk, introverts may revert to looking at funny memes or scrolling through their Twitter feed.
Instead: Ask what they are looking at or if they don’t want to show you, then just text them and let them know you love them. They will see it right away and feel content.
#4 – “Why are you so quiet?”
Introverts like to map out things in their head before they speak their mind, so please don’t judge them for not participating in the conversation as much. Also, if it is a big social setting, they may feel uncomfortable having small talk with people they do not know. We are not anti-social, just are more comfortable in smaller settings. Also, introverts like to listen. They absorb what is going on around them and chime in when the time is right.
Extroverts would not want to hear that they are loud and obnoxious so do not say this please.
If I had a dime for every time someone said this to me, I would be the richest introvert ever. I am not quiet around the people I am comfortable around.
Instead: Try to engage them in conversation, but if they don’t feel like talking, maybe change the subject or try to change your environment to something more comfortable for them.
#3 – “You should get out more.”
Introverts need time alone to be able to keep a clear head. Sure, sometimes you feel bad turning down your friend who asked you to go out tonight, but the idea of being in a social setting, when you already have in your mind that you are going to sit at home and watch Netflix in your pajamas, just doesn’t sound appealing to you. Also, if it is just supposed to be the two of you, do not invite someone else, especially if your friend doesn’t know them.
Unless our houses are on fire, please do not show up unannounced. It will just cause the introverted person more stress. We need time to let our guard down.
Instead: come over to your friend’s house. You can still hang out. It will be a better situation for both of you and you can still spend quality time together.
#2 – “Are you ok?”
Yes, I am ok. I am just evaluating the situation, thinking of what to say. While this may seem like a nice gesture, it can come off as condescending. It puts more pressure on introverts to talk more, which is already making them feel uncomfortable.
Instead: If you are in a social setting, check on your friend. Whether it is a hand squeeze, a pat on the back or a smile, just let your introverted friend know that you understand them.
#1 – “Don’t be shy”
Thanks. That helps a lot. Never ever say this. That’s like telling someone who is sick to just shake it off. It’s impossible and doesn’t make anyone feel better when you say it. Shyness and Introvertness are two different things.
Instead: Talk directly to your introverted friend, so they don’t feel left out of the conversation, but also don’t necessarily have to respond, especially to those they do not know. Encourage us to speak up. Say something we can relate to and would feel alright chiming in with.
The bottom line is don’t judge us. Don’t get mad. Never say things that you think might make us feel worse. We are fine.