On the Introvert Wish List

Extroverts, by nature, want things that go fast. Introverts, by nature, want things that go slow. The holidays are coming around the corner, and as we become more mindful of what those we love really appreciate, we can better support their wish list.

Included among the few things introverts wish for (and there are several future blog postings to address these) is Time to Think.

We introverts like processing our ideas, chewing on what has just happened, enjoying the deeper meanings and exploring where they take us. When I read a book, often I get to a key idea or moment that really resonates with me. At that point a natural thing for me to do is put down the book, stare off into space and toss the idea around in my head, considering the implications to me or others, deciding the application of the concept or technique to my life and then, once really digging deep with the moment, going back to where I left off reading.

If someone were to give me a gift, it would be to grant me quality time to process an idea. Last week I was given such a gift by someone unlike me. An extrovert who expertly pinned me as a steadfast communicator – one who enjoys taking my time to digest and deliver – suggested I propose some conference presentation ideas for the financial professionals in her firm. Although I mis-spoke when asking her for the due date (by when would you like this proposal vs. would this due date meet your approval?) it turned out, because she respected my style as well as her needs.

How about a week from now? she responded. Perfect. Even though I already knew the key points to focus the presentation around, I needed to weigh them with other points I had been researching. Since then, that’s what I’ve poured myself into – making sure these points were well-supported and designed to address the firm’s needs and expectations.  I have had the time to think this through.

Quick turn-arounds push my conscientiousness buttons. They create dis-ease. Since I’m the only one working on this, I need to make good use of resources around me to put my best ideas in motion. The steadfast thinker/responder is refreshed with gifts of time.

How can you give introverts some creative gifting this year? An easy idea is through gift cards to restaurants, museum shows, symphony concerts or book stores. They usually have a span of time attached that allow for usage when it seems appropriate. Another idea is to give them time in decision-making. They may not be putting a proposal together, but perhaps there is a project they’re well-suited for that helps with at-home or in-office organization. Suggesting a “birth date” (vs. a deadline) for that project helps us pace ourselves in our delivery of it.

Finally, help introverts enjoy the holidays, one day at a time. That will be the grandest gift.

Stay tuned for more postings on the Introvert Wish list. I won’t say when the next one will surface…but trust that it will at least in a week’s time!

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On November 15th, 2011, posted in: introverts, steadfast, time for thought by