Jon flopped on the sofa and reached for the remote. He was looking forward to a night of nothing, after staying late at the office all week. He pressed the power button and flipped the foot rest up on his La-Z-Boy. That’s when Jane marched in.
“You remember that we have dinner plans with the McCoy’s, don’t you? There’s absolutely no way I’m staying in this stuffy, old house any longer. We stayed home last weekend, and I am NOT doing it again!”
Have you ever found yourself in this situation or one like it? If you’re an introvert married to an extrovert, your answer is probably “Yes.”
While introverts and extroverts complement each other and make a great team, their differences can also drive each other nuts, so what can you do to keep the tone of your marriage positive and work through your differences? Consider these six suggestions.
“What does it feel like to be an introvert?”
I’m glad you asked. I applaud your healthy curiosity and willingness to learn more about the quiet people around you. While I can’t speak for all introverts, I can give you a glimpse of what being an introvert is like for me.
Allow me to take you inside my head for a quick look at what it’s like to be an introvert.
Do you ever get the INFJ blues? I do routinely. One day, I’ll be feeling encouraged and motivated and the next I’ll be down in the dumps. I’m learning that it’s part of being an INFJ.
Just tonight, the dark side of my personality confronted me again. A family member gave me some constructive criticism that I wasn’t expecting, and as he did, the sun disappeared from my proverbial sky.
I hate when I get depressed. I feel trapped and start to question whether or not any of my hopes and dreams will ever come true. Sometimes I just don’t know how to shake the heavy feelings or change my mood.
Have you been there?
While I’m not a counselor and I don’t have it all figured out, I have found several strategies that help me.
What are your biggest introvert struggles?
On what should have been my first day of kindergarten, I hid under the bed, unwilling to trade the quiet familiarity of my home for the unsettling clamor of elementary school. My mother determined that I needed another year of preschool, bless her heart.
Since that time, I’ve managed to integrate somewhat successfully into society at large, but there are still many challenges that confront me as an introvert living in an extroverted culture. They are the same ones that confront every introvert at some time or another.
In this post, I’ll share what are, in my opinion, the top 5 introvert struggles.
Do you, fellow INFJ, long to be validated?
If you’re like most of us, your answer to that question is a resounding yes. While some disagree, arguing that INFJ logic can eliminate this need, it’s safe to say that most INFJs seek validation from others – especially those closest to them. They want the world to approve of their thoughts and feelings and appreciate them for who they are. But why is this the case? Why do INFJs long to be validated?
Picture this. You’re sitting on your porch, enjoying a novel and a cup of coffee, basking in the sunlight. Robins are singing, and there’s a pleasant chill lingering in the air. It’s the perfect morning.
Suddenly, unannounced and uninvited, your rowdy neighbor rolls up in his Mustang. Windows down and “Stones” blaring, he yells from the street up to your porch, startling you and ruining the moment. For no good reason, he tries to start a conversation from 50 feet away, eliminating all but the memory of your peace and quiet. This is your plight, an introvert in an extroverted world.
While you may never have experienced the above scenario, I’ll bet you’ve been…
- Interrupted when trying to concentrate
- Talked over while getting your thoughts together
- Put down for needing more alone time
Your struggle is real, so you wonder: Why are extroverts so draining?
Let’s take a look at a possible explanation, specific circumstances where extroverts frustrate you, and some potential solutions.
Perfectionism has stopped me in my tracks more times than I care to remember. I’ve had numerous brilliant ideas and exciting dreams that I’ve given up on before ever starting because I’m afraid of subpar results. This is a challenge that all INFJs wrestle with at some point.
Your INFJ ability to see the future and vivid possibilities gets you all-kinds-of-excited about an idea, while your idealism weighs you down like an anchor, forbidding you to make a move.
The predicament is that you’ll never be happy until you begin to take action and realize your dreams.
If you’re tired of letting perfectionism hold you back from your potential, here are a few suggestions that may help you overcome your perfectionism and take more action.
Believe it or not, your introversion gives you a networking advantage. This runs contrary to popular belief and perhaps your own experience.
You and I both know that, as introverts, we lose energy when talking to a group of new people. What’s more, we despise small talk. Really, we’d rather be at home with a book or with a few close friends than at a networking function of any size.
But, truth be told, your introversion is really a gift, when it comes to networking. Check out 5 ways your introversion makes you an extraordinary networker.
Every INFJ has felt misunderstood at one time or another. It’s a natural consequence of being one of the rarest personality types.
Sadly, people naturally assume that you’re like them, and some will tell you that there’s something wrong with you if you’re the least bit different.
Over the past couple years, I’ve come to embrace my INFJ personality, but for a long time, I wondered why I was so different. I regularly felt broken, frustrated, unappreciated, and out of place. I wish someone would have told me how and why I was different and that I’m okay.
If you’re an INFJ, wrestling with what makes you so different, here are six things I want you to know about yourself.
Want a life that better suited to your INFJ personality? Download the list of My Favorite INFJ Resources to discover how to create it.
“What careers would be suitable for me?”
Have you asked that question? It doesn’t matter whether you’re getting ready to enter your freshmen year of college or you’ve been in the workforce for years now, many of us still wonder what we’re meant to do. I definitely did.
Before this year, I had a hard time figuring out what I was passionate about and where my greatest strengths lie. Then, I learned something about myself that turned out to be a game changer…