Why I Feel Grateful to Be an Introvert

Introverted man with a cup of coffee

As an introvert, I can spend a whole day with just me, myself, and I, and feel absolutely at peace.

It’s a big, extroverted world out there, so this one’s for the introverts. 

Lately, I’ve been reflecting on all the ways introversion has helped me grow as a person, from becoming a great listener to being comfortable dining alone. It may have taken me several years to embrace my introversion, but I’ve finally been able to create a lifestyle that makes me feel content. 

If you’re an introvert like myself, here are nine reasons why you should be feeling exceptionally grateful to be “the quiet one.”

9 Reasons I’m Grateful to Be an Introvert

1. I’m more independent. Dining out alone? No problem.

We introverts crave alone time. By naturally gravitating toward solo activities, my introversion has turned me into an independent individual. I believe this is because we’re so comfortable being alone that it naturally lends itself to us introverts being more independent.

While my extroverted friends and family members may want someone to tag along when hitting the mall, taking a hike, or dining out, I’m completely fine doing these things on my own. Truth be told, I often prefer solo outings compared to large, group events.

2. Friends trust me to truly listen to them.

Like many other introverts, I’ve found myself dubbed as the “therapist” of my friend group — meaning that I’m the person my loved ones turn to when they need to talk about something. 

The reason? Many introverts are exceptional listeners. And not only that, but many introverts are known to be active listeners — meaning that we give full attention to the speaker, reflect on what is being said, and retain the information for later. Regardless if my friends just need a sounding board or are genuinely seeking my insights, I’m happy to be the person they trust and depend on.

3. When I speak, people listen.

Being an introvert has taught me that silence can speak louder than words. 

As introverts, we choose what we say very carefully. Others pick up on that, which is why when an introvert speaks, people listen. Those who know us understand that we don’t say things just to say them — in fact, introverts are known for despising shallow socializing and small talk

So when we “quiet ones” join the discussion, we aren’t speaking to the wind. Our words have been well-thought-out in our minds, and we are speaking with a purpose. People recognize this, which often causes them to listen to the carefully chosen words we say. It goes to show that the most powerful or influential person in a room doesn’t necessarily have to be the loudest.

4. I’m content being alone  (and there’s always plenty of things to do!).

It’s hard for us introverts to imagine not feeling at peace when alone, but some people simply can’t stand being by themselves. And, quite frankly, I don’t envy them. I’m thankful that I can sit inside, go for a walk, run errands, or spend a whole day with just me, myself, and I, and feel absolutely at peace.

5. At times, my introversion is regarded as mysteriousness (in a good way).

I’ve found that people often describe me, and probably many other introverts, as mysterious — but I’m not complaining! 

There’s something about introverts that others, particularly more extroverted types, can find to be exceptionally alluring. Since I’m so comfortable being alone and am not one to overshare, I often come across as private, secretive, and puzzling. I like being regarded in this way because when I do choose to open up to someone, they know this isn’t the norm. This means they’re likely in my inner circle, one of the few chosen ones I trust. The person is special to me — they “get” me — and opening up is my way of letting them know I appreciate them.

6. I get fulfillment from solo hobbies, like reading and cooking.

Since introverts generally flourish in calm environments, we are the types of people who thrive in maintaining solo hobbies. For me, it’s easy to decline a night out at a busy bar and spend my evening cooking (“culinary therapy” is a thing!), writing, reading, or indulging in one of my other go-to solo hobbies instead. And I’m thankful to be able to pursue these different interests, learn new things, and create some cute crafts and delicious recipes along the way.

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7. I’m not afraid of solo traveling (and I get to make all the decisions!).

“I wanted to go, but I couldn’t find anyone to come with me!” Yeah, that’s not something I often say. 

As an introvert, I don’t shy away from solo traveling — instead, I seek it out. I’m grateful that I feel confident enough to take on the world on my own, and I don’t let the fact that I don’t have a travel buddy stop me from embarking on new adventures. Plus, by going alone, I have complete say over my itinerary, which includes deciding what I do, when I do it, and not being worried about pleasing others throughout the trip. 

Of course, while many introverts excel at traveling alone, we must take precautions to ensure a safe voyage. That’s why I’m always sure to inform others of where I’m going, stick to well-known territories, and carry my phone with me in case of an emergency. 

8. I’m comfortable saying “no” (practice makes perfect).

Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO)? I don’t know her. 

When I was younger, and before I understood what it meant to be an introvert, I felt like I had to say yes to every invitation that crossed my path. But today, I understand that spending time alone (or in calm environments) is more than a want — it’s a necessity. That’s why I’m not afraid to decline invitations to events that I know will a.) make me feel uncomfortable or b.) drain all my energy

Sure, people don’t like when you reject their invitations. But they also probably don’t fully get what it means to be an introvert and how we recharge alone, not at a big party. All in all, as an introvert, I want to spend my time doing things that make me feel satisfied, and in doing so, I’ve become comfortable with saying “no.”

Does that mean it’s easy to say no? Not always. But the more you learn about the activities you do enjoy (hello, staying home in front of the fire with a true crime novel), you learn more about the activities you don’t enjoy. So when I’m invited somewhere, I take my time providing an RSVP. I consider the event and try to determine if I’ll feel comfortable. A few hours with close friends at a party? Yeah, that might be a good time. Renting a three-bedroom beach house with 10 other people for the summer? No, I don’t feel bad missing that one.

As an introvert, I know I have limitations, like needing time alone to recharge. And forcing myself too far out of my comfort zone won’t do anyone any good, which makes me more comfortable saying no.

9. Learning about introversion has helped me understand myself.

In this extroverted society, introverts are constantly being pushed out of their comfort zones (yes, I’m talking to you, workplace icebreakers). I, like most introverts, grew up surrounded by extroverts. After years of feeling out of place and wondering why I couldn’t be more like my outgoing friends, I finally learned what it means to be introverted. And as I’ve read more about introversion, it’s helped me better understand myself and create a lifestyle that suits my introverted needs. Whether you read books about introversion, like The Secret Lives of Introverts, or blogs like this one, the more educated you are about what it means to be an introvert, the better.

Today, I’m familiar with my limitations, and I’ll think twice about agreeing to do something that seems a little too high-stimulus for my liking. Thanks to learning more about introversion, I know that I need things — like alone time and quiet space — if I want to feel energized. Instead of forcing my introverted self to live an extroverted life by going to that Friday night party, spending Sunday afternoons at football tailgates, or signing up to live in a cabin with twelve other people all summer (the old me would have), I’ve created a lifestyle that suits my needs and makes me feel fulfilled. I’ve traded loud nights at crowded bars for cozy evenings listening to music and chaotic festivals for solo hiking trips — and I couldn’t be happier.

So, my fellow introverts, whether you’ve been a lifelong introvert or have recently embraced your introvert shell, I’m thankful to be part of a community that understands introversion and to have the opportunity to connect with individuals who wouldn’t ever call me out for being too quiet. Because the more I learn about introverts, the more thankful I am to be one.

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