Don’t be lazy
Don’t be a workaholic
Don’t be stubborn
Don’t avoid new experiences
Don’t fear fear
Don’t be/stay stupid
Don’t be negative
Don’t move too slowly
Don’t move too quickly
Don’t be isolated
Don’t be proud
Don’t have a low self-image
Don’t move about aimlessly
Don’t be dishonest
Don’t be a bad example
Don’t give up when things get difficult
In these phrases above I think that I’ve summed up everything you’ll find written in a John C Maxwell type of leadership book. I can’t know this for certain though since I’ve never actually read a John C Maxwell book in its entirety. I’ve started at least three different books of his, but I always seem to lose interest very quickly.
It’s not that I don’t like what he says. Everything he writes is true. He offers a lot of good wisdom. There’s a reason everybody quotes him all the time. And I do try to follow these things listed above myself (with God’s grace). But does not Maxwell just state the obvious? It’s all common sense isn’t it? Don’t we all know these things already? Maybe not. Still, there has to be deeper reasons why people don’t become dynamic leaders other than just a simple lack of John C Maxwell type knowledge.
For one, many people are not called to be great, outspoken leaders. God created and is calling a lot of people to be introverts. Quiet thinkers have a huge impact on society. It’s the philosophers of the past that shaped the way society thinks today. Think about CS Lewis. He was a professor and a writer–which means he spent a lot of time alone in his study. Think of the deep impact he’s had on so many people today. He never led the charge in any great movement. Although in hindsight he is a great leader. His written words are leading many people today–much more people than if he chose to be a public figure.
So don’t feel guilty if you get bored listening to the modern day leadership gurus. It just means that God is calling you to something better suited to how He designed you. And you may just find yourself end up being a strong influential leader as well.
Myth #1 – Introverts don’t like to talk.
This is not true. Introverts just don’t talk unless they have something to say. They hate small talk. Get an introvert talking about something they are interested in, and they won’t shut up for days.
Myth #2 – Introverts are shy.
Shyness has nothing to do with being an Introvert. Introverts are not necessarily afraid of people. What they need is a reason to interact. They don’t interact for the sake of interacting. If you want to talk to an Introvert, just start talking. Don’t worry about being polite.
Myth #3 – Introverts are rude.
Introverts often don’t see a reason for beating around the bush with social pleasantries. They want everyone to just be real and honest. Unfortunately, this is not acceptable in most settings, so Introverts can feel a lot of pressure to fit in, which they find exhausting.
Myth #4 – Introverts don’t like people.
On the contrary, Introverts intensely value the few friends they have. They can count their close friends on one hand. If you are lucky enough for an introvert to consider you a friend, you probably have a loyal ally for life. Once you have earned their respect as being a person of substance, you’re in.
Myth #5 – Introverts don’t like to go out in public.
Nonsense. Introverts just don’t like to go out in public FOR AS LONG. They also like to avoid the complications that are involved in public activities. They take in data and experiences very quickly, and as a result, don’t need to be there for long to “get it.” They’re ready to go home, recharge, and process it all. In fact, recharging is absolutely crucial for Introverts.
Myth #6 – Introverts always want to be alone.
Introverts are perfectly comfortable with their own thoughts. They think a lot. They daydream. They like to have problems to work on, puzzles to solve. But they can also get incredibly lonely if they don’t have anyone to share their discoveries with. They crave an authentic and sincere connection with ONE PERSON at a time.
Myth #7 – Introverts are weird.
Introverts are often individualists. They don’t follow the crowd. They’d prefer to be valued for their novel ways of living. They think for themselves and because of that, they often challenge the norm. They don’t make most decisions based on what is popular or trendy.
Myth #8 – Introverts are aloof nerds.
Introverts are people who primarily look inward, paying close attention to their thoughts and emotions. It’s not that they are incapable of paying attention to what is going on around them, it’s just that their inner world is much more stimulating and rewarding to them.
Myth #9 – Introverts don’t know how to relax and have fun.
Introverts typically relax at home or in nature, not in busy public places. Introverts are not thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies. If there is too much talking and noise going on, they shut down. Their brains are too sensitive to the neurotransmitter called Dopamine. Introverts and Extroverts have different dominant neuro-pathways. Just look it up.
Myth #10 – Introverts can fix themselves and become Extroverts.
A world without Introverts would be a world with few scientists, musicians, artists, poets, filmmakers, doctors, mathematicians, writers, and philosophers. That being said, there are still plenty of techniques an Extrovert can learn in order to interact with Introverts. (Yes, I reversed these two terms on purpose to show you how biased our society is.) Introverts cannot “fix themselves” and deserve respect for their natural temperament and contributions to the human race. In fact, one study (Silverman, 1986) showed that the percentage of Introverts increases with IQ.