Managing the Negative Perceptions

It’s Monday. Planning for your day ahead you realize you are scheduled to attend an internal meeting. And you wish to make a good impression with your meeting participation. You consider, what do people expect of me? That I talk? That I have energy in my manner? That I respond quickly?

If you’re an introvert, these expectations do not match your temperament. And when your behaviors fall short from the expectations, there is a perception gap that remains which begs the question of you, Is there something wrong?

We introverts know there is nothing wrong with us when we are slow to respond, when we are calm vs. excited, or when we choose to pause and listen. We know it speaks to our willingness to hear first, respond second. Yet the perception others have of us, others who are unlike us, can lead to negative impressions – that there is indeed something wrong. And because introverts often let outside impression dictate how we feel about ourselves, we believe others’ perceptions. We must turn this around.

Negative impressions can be managed by focusing on the positive, so that’s our key. Remember the value of thinking before speaking, and continue to do so. When others focus on us in uncomfortable moments of silence, enjoy the calm. Just because some may not, we needn’t get our feathers ruffled. Preen. And let the perception slowly shift. It worked for E.F. Hutton. It can work for us.

Happy Monday!

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On January 16th, 2012, posted in: energy, introverts, silence, talking by