Time and again people engage in a debate about ‘who is the best?’ So, today I thought let’s jump on the bandwagon and try to come to a conclusion. However, we are going to opt for a different approach here. We will analyze some stories and then see for ourselves which one is better.
Our first case in point is Person 1. Now, let me tell you some of her qualities. She is ten years old, she is the life of any birthday party she attends. She is always amped up when she is around people. However, she tends to ‘fade’ out or get easily bored when she is alone. She also cannot sit in one place for a very long time. She always wants to be ‘doing something.’
Now, her parents have also noticed these traits. However, they are not happy with what they are seeing. They think she is too ‘outdoorsy’ and does not spend time at home for a very long time. They want her to spend more time studying at home and practicing. She is doing well in school, and a few other activities too. But, they think that if she spends more time, she can do even better.
So, now she is confined to her own home for a longer time duration, where she cannot meet other people or do anything that she likes. She is very unhappy and constantly thinking about being outside. Which meant she could not even focus on the work at hand.
When the results of her tests were out, her parents were shocked! She had scored even less than what she used to score before. They could not understand what the problem was since she had done more practice too.
Now let us see the story of Person B. He is also like Person A, cannot sit in one place for a long time, loves socializing with friends and his academics are still alright.
But, here is a big difference. He is honing in on the skills that he has. His parents are also supporting him in whatever he does. So, even though he is not spending much time, his results are still good. He and his parents are collectively looking for opportunities that are best suited to him.
The entire atmosphere at home is always positive. All of them have a good understanding and they listen to each other’s perspectives.
Now, let us get to know Person C. He is a person who likes to be by himself. He enjoys spending time with himself. Whenever he is doing some work, he is completely focused on it and he can sit for hours doing one work.
However, his parents are worried about him. They think that their child is not socializing which is bad for him. They think that he is not happy in his life because he does not have many friends. They also want him to try various things, rather than just doing one thing.
Now, Person C has to go and interact with people around him which makes him uncomfortable. He does not like the fact that he has to go down and play something that he does not like with a bunch of people with whom he does not want to spend much time. He cannot even do things that he liked because his parents told him that he needs to broaden his horizons.
And as you would have it, everything is all messed up. He is no longer happy. He is constantly irritated that he has to do stuff that he hates. He is constantly avoiding his parents because they keep telling him to go outside. And he cannot handle the ‘doing various things.’ Which means he has lost touch with what he enjoyed before.
This is going to be our final story. The story of Person D. She is somewhat similar to Person C. She also likes being on her own. She can sit for hours focused on one work.
Now, her parents understand her traits. What they do is, they let her work in her own way. They know that she is happy, in whatever she is doing, so they don’t want her to give that up. They know she does not have many friends, or that she doesn’t go out everyday to talk to other people, however they think that as long as it is not affecting her confidence, they are fine with it. They want her to do whatever she feels comfortable with so that she can excel at whatever she does best.
Now, that the stories are over, can fe find a moral? Okay, let us first try and find some conclusions and then we will come to the moral later.
We can see that Person A and Person B show extrovert traits, while Person C and Person D are introvert traits.
Person A and Person C are not happy with their life. They are facing scores of issues.
Person B and Person B are doing quite well for themselves.
Now looking at our conclusions we can see that introverts and extroverts are both happy or unhappy. Their traits were not what decided who would do well, rather it was the environment that made things different for all of them.
Now, let us come to the moral part. It does not matter. Yes, being an introvert or extrovert has nothing to do with whether you will have a wonderful life or not. What matters is working with what you have and achieving the best you can. We do not have to become someone else just because we think they are more successful. First and foremost thing is that we understand what we are.
The next part is accepting who we are and playing to our strengths. And here is where we as parents have to become cautious. I know we tell them things that they should do out of care and concern for them. But we should also see that we do not try to reprogram our kids from scratch.