Deep within me, I knew my qualities and what made me appreciated in this company. It was my strategic thinking, keeping calm even in stressful situations, working hard, my capacity for introspection, and, above all, my great ability to listen to others.
I have always been pretty successful in my life and, particularly, in my professional life. Despite this, I have always been told that I am too shy and that I stay too much in the shade. As a result, I have always tried to be more outgoing, more talkative, and less shy…until my early thirties when I realized that that was the wrong way for me to live!
I can’t tell you how many times I heard when working for a company, “If you want to be appreciated, you should talk more during meetings; you need to show people who you really are.” At every level of my work promotions, I would hear this again and again—the request for me to “come out of my shell”!
Today, I am still wondering why it is so important to “come out of one’s shell” in those companies if the work is done well. There are so many workers who became successful thanks to their ability to show themselves but who are not necessarily delivering the quality, which some more quiet people deliver.
When I was part of the local board of management, my team liked me for my patience, the way I listened to them, and the way I coached them in a Quiet way. And the results were there. Deep within me, I knew my qualities and what made me appreciated in this company. It was my strategic thinking, keeping calm even in stressful situations, working hard, my capacity for introspection, and, above all, my great ability to listen to others. Unfortunately, I was not strong enough to argue with my management, who were not as into my Quiet approach.
Finally, I decided to quit the company. The reasons were many (need for change, need to do something more meaningful), but mainly I needed to give all my strengths to spreading the message about introversion so that introverts feel better in this world. I felt the need to educate managers, teachers, psychologists, coaches, and all other professionals who have an impact on people. I am convinced that if we talk, talk, and talk some more about this topic, with time, it will have an impact on how people think about it. Not to mention that we need to educate introverts themselves—we need to empower them to find the strengths to say NO! To let them know in a quiet way: they’re right for acting in a more gentle way.
It is with this conviction that I decided to start a blog dedicated to introversion in French, and it seems to be the only blog in the French language dedicated to this topic. I hope this blog and my desire to foster this change will have an impact on the French-speaking cultures.