3 Things You Need To Know About Being an Introvert in the Modern Workplace
Recently I was talking to someone (let’s call her Amanda) about being an introvert and she said this to me:
“I have all these big dreams and ideas for projects I want to do and a business I want to create, but I get so exhausted working in my job.
My office is open plan and I can’t even concentrate half the time, I get frustrated at the noise and the constant distractions. I have to hide out in the bathroom or my car to get five minutes of quiet throughout the day.
By the time I get home from work, I’m completely drained and don’t want to work on my side biz, so I chill out and watch Netflix. But I know I’ll get to it some day, when I’ve got more time and more energy.”
I hear stories like this all the time. In fact, this used to be my story too, working 50+ hour weeks in an industry crowded with extraverts, just dying to have a conversation that ten other people weren’t listening to.
My boss and mentor (a producer who is also an introvert) and I sometimes used to run away to research shooting locations, just so we could have some quiet time away from the office (and all the freaking drama).
There are three things that I’ve identified that are causing introverts like Amanda this kind of burn out and inability to get on with the dream business she one day hopes to have. They’re also the three things I believe are the vital to having a fulfilling and successful career as a more introverted person.
1. The workplace is generally exhausting for introverts
Working a full time 9-5 (or 8-6 if you’re SUPER lucky) is exhausting. Especially if you’re an introvert.
It starts with the frantic rush to get ready in the morning, commuting in peak hour traffic or public transport, and mind-numbing small talk with your colleagues.
It usually involves a meeting or two where the loudest person in the room is the one everyone listens to.
Maybe there’s some sort of drama between colleagues or with superiors or clients that everyone wants to vent to you about, because you’re a kick ass listener.
And – if you’re like Amanda – it probably means running away to hide somewhere for a moment of peace and quiet.
You need this time to re-energise throughout the day.
It’s not a ruse. It’s real.
Introverts gain energy and process information from time spent alone.
And the modern workplace just does not accomodate for that.
2. Modern offices are all about “open plan” – A.K.A an introvert’s nightmare
According to the International Facility Management Association, around 70 percent of workplaces in the U.S are open plan offices despite there being no proof that they make the workplace more productive.
Studies actually show that open plan offices increase distractions and lower productivity.
Regardless, many offices are sticking with this style and – let’s face it – it’s not doing introverts any favours.
Employees working from home are actually the most productive in the modern-day office, but try talking your boss into that (I dare you, let me know how you go!).
3. The danger of “some day” thinking
This is the part of Amanda’s comment that really made me sad.
You know, that magical, mystical day where you get up and see the sunrise, have the perfect yoga session, eat healthy food all day long, have the most productive day ever, Liam Hemsworth asks you out on a date and coffee is free ALL DAY LONG.
The thing is, “some day” never comes.
The reality is that your job is burning you out. Your open plan office means that you’re constantly distracted and putting sooooo much of your precious energy into just getting through your to-do list, in the midst of all the chaos, that of course you’re too tired to do anything when you get home from work.
Much less sit at the computer and try and write that blog post, or work on that business idea.
I hear ya!
Only one thing is going to change here (because, like I said, your busy office environment ain’t going anywhere).
You need your job to pay your bills right now, I get it.
If you really want to *do that thing*, something is going to have to change.
And that something is you.
But, never fear, you’re not alone. It just so happens that I’m hosting an online class on this exact subject this Wednesday the 23rd March at 8pm (AEDST).
I’m going to talk all about how to navigate your job as a full-time employee, but also how to get started on your side business or passion project.
I can’t stand the thought that your amazing idea or your dream job might never happen. And I want to make sure that you have the energy and the best help to get started on turning those “some day” dreams into reality.
Don’t miss this! Register for the class here (or via the box below)
Leaving my super demanding job and creating a business that is perfect for me is the greatest thing I’ve ever done.
I want to share my experience and tips with you so that you can ditch your draining job and create your dream business too.
Can’t wait to see you on the call on Wednesday and, if you know someone who needs to join this class, please share this with them too! Who knows what it could do for them.