Who do you think would be better at networking, an introvert or an extrovert? That was the discussion topic at a recent Women’s Network Australia event. The outcome surprised some.

The term “introvert” is a classic example of a mistaken negative label. It used to, and commonly still does in some circles, mean someone who is chronically shy, socially inept, and possibly emotionally dysfunctional.  In reality, it simply means someone who needs to recharge alone.

An “extrovert” is someone who needs to recharge with others.  So, the ‘life of the party’ could actually be a confident, fun loving introvert, or a shy, insecure extrovert who acts loud to hide that insecurity. Both could be lonely, whether alone, in a relationship or in a group.

Once I realised I’ve grown into a confident introvert, it was so much easier to understand and honour my needs. If I really don’t feel like going to a networking event, for example, I know it’s not because I’m scared, I just need recharging alone rather than ‘giving’ at an event. I’ve made the mistake of “pushing through” and going enough times to know I don’t show up at my best (and first impressions do count) and end up more drained and inefficient afterwards.

Recently a networking connection confessed she thought I only worked with introverts, the shy and dysfunctional. In reality, I work with a range of people, many of whom are articulate, confident and successful on the outside, but just don’t feel it on the inside.

Shy introverts I help to shed the lies and head trash from their past, optimize their unconscious blueprint, and strengthen their self-belief and confidence.

Confident introverts (like me) mostly need boundary setting support to deal with the overwhelm and burnout from ‘doing it all’. Guilt-free saying, “No.” Just imagine.

Insecure extroverts I help clear whatever head trash is stopping them from self-acceptance and feeling successful inside, without the song and dance. They learn it’s safe to be themselves.

Confident extroverts often need short-term help moving up to the next level, as that’s when head trash appears for each of us, as we adjust to our new identities and responsibilities.

All four groups might need help with business and personal relationships, health, finance and business/career issues, particularly when there’s a clash between introvert and extrovert needs. If you are an extrovert and your partner is an introvert, you both need to understand and respect each other’s needs. Introverts need space after school/work, not a schedule packed with extracurricular activities. Head trash pops up in many places and forms, so my work is endlessly fascinating.  If I didn’t love travelling so much I might not take holidays. Hmm, no, that wouldn’t work. I need my recharge time.

Where do you fit in? I’d love to hear your take on this, and what you’ve noticed about your own behaviour and energy levels.

Oh, and the answer to who is best at networking is neither or either. Effective networking is showing up, leaving your head trash at the door, being open to learning and sharing with others, and always following through with whatever you promised. Send that resource, make that introduction, call to arrange a time to chat about each other’s businesses.  Make it a safe spam-free zone.

It also helps to be really clear beforehand exactly why you are investing your time, energy and money in attending, and setting very clear intentions about what you want in return. That could be some fun and moral support from other business owners who understand your journey. It may be to learn from the presenter, strengthen previous connections, to find potential collaborators or client/customer referrals.

Know who you are, how and whom you can help. Be able to verbalise that, then all you need to do is relax and enjoy yourself.

If you’d like to have a complimentary chat about your needs as an introvert or extrovert, or clean-skin (no label), just book a time using this link https://my.timetrade.com/book/SPXCJ  If you can’t find a suitable time, feel free to message me on 0428 128 679 and I’ll be in touch.