Photo by kaibara87

Are you a shy business owner?

Do you kinda dread networking events? When you go to live events or log onto webinars, are you secretly envious of the other person’s courage to get out there and bask successfully in the spotlight’s glow?

Yeah, me too.

At some point in my childhood, someone stuck the shy label on me. And once it was attached, I started to live up to it.

Problem is, it’s the wrong label.

According to Merriam Webster’s definition, shy means easily frightened and timid. I’ve driven a race care on Atlanta Motor Speedway. I’ve pitched new business accounts to a roomful of 30 people. I’ve played Christmas hymns on the piano during Sunday service.

Do I sound easily frightened and timid? Sure, I may have been a little nervous and excited before diving into these activities, but I did them anyway and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

What I am, is an introvert. Not shy or aloof or arrogant or rude – all labels I heard growing up.

Quiet? Sometimes.

Cynical? Not often.

Misunderstood? Almost always.

Feel that way too?

Yet I can socialize like an extrovert. Hell, sometimes I even crave company. Most of the time though, being “on” socially eventually saps my energy and I need time alone to recharge. Extroverts wouldn’t dream of being alone because they are “people persons”, right?

Well, we introverts are people persons too. We just express ourselves differently.

For me, I express myself best in writing, one-on-one or in small groups. For awhile though, I denied myself the chance to fully and truly express the real me and, in the process, get to know you because I got hung up on the “shy” label.

To my fellow introverts, I just want you to know that you can share the real you in whatever way is most comfortable for you. And when you do, your tribe will find you.

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