In a world filled with procrastinators, strategic thinking introverts are hardwired to achieve success out of a sense of duty and a commitment to effective processes.
Underestimated for as long as they could remember, this brand of introverts has always had to be self-reliant, particularly first-borns.
As ambitious personalities, they have a burning desire to prove their value through accomplishments to the world.
Introverts who transform the world solve compelling problems.
Writer Boom Shikha describes why her commitment to success makes her an outlier.
She said: I miss all of the events that go late because I have to wake up early and do my morning routine. As my morning routine is a non-negotiable part of my life, everything else is negotiable—time with friends, time with family, time having fun, work time, etc.
I have to get up every morning at around 6:30 a.m. and work for the next 3–4 hours on my stuff. There is nothing negotiable about that either. After a morning routine that lasts 2 hours, I write for a few hours in different formats. Blog posts, my fiction novel, medium posts, and more. Again, this means, I cannot spend the mornings dilly-dallying or with friends or on anything fun (p. 1).
As a strategic thinking introvert, I discovered that I wasn’t always invited to fabulous parties, but people would contact me when they were in a jam or needed advice.
At first, I was put off by not being included in the fun stuff (or at least being invited).
I was being used because of my intellectual prowess and penchant for problem-solving.
It all came to a boil when my friend Autumn called me to ask me about securing a job that would fit her personality.
I knew she was an ISTJ personality type who enjoyed following policies and rules.
Her best jobs would be system or process-driven jobs like IT, accounting, or the legal profession.
She thanked me profusely as she began to say goodbye.
Suddenly, I said, “Autumn, I am curious. I know you have a small circle of friends with whom you spend a great deal of time. Why didn’t you ask one of them for advice?”
Autumn said something that I will never forget. She said, “Jane, we all are introverts, but you do things to the extreme. You write the most, read the most, and seem to have an uncanny way of looking at life from a practical sense. Because you are our go-to person, we don’t think we can measure up to your tenacity.”
And the coup de grâce was when she said jokingly, “It’s lonely at the top.”
We said our goodbyes as I sat there for hours thinking about her final comment, “It’s lonely at the top.”
Although a cliché, that statement has shaped everything in my life. I had been an over-achiever since early childhood. I never needed to be awakened for school nor told to do my homework. Often, I would register for afterschool activities where my parents only had to sign the permission slips.
Once I developed a regimen for completing tasks, I lived by that process.
This ritual had become my life, and I was always happy about my results.
I operated as a human machine.
And yes, it has cost me. It made others feel inept and substandard because they seemed to lack the focus to achieve anything significant.
As a result, I embrace this reality. I may even be called an intellectual elitist. I tend to judge people by their smarts and ability to get things done.
Yes, it’s lonely at the top. But I like being alone.
Here are five everyday viewpoints only strategic thinking introverts will understand:
Performance is everything.
People generally extol the virtues of living a balanced life. But I never agreed with the idea of a balanced life. Strategic thinking introverts accept the imbalance that is derived by focusing on specific outcomes. Economist Dr. Thomas Sowell said there are no ideal solutions in life, only trade-offs. And an opportunity cost suggests that one decision means that potential gains from alternative options may be lost.
Vanity and health are synonymous.
People often emphasize the health benefits of regular exercise at the behest of denying the need to look presentable and appealing. I have consistently worked out throughout my life because I like how I look in and out of my clothes. The by-product of exercising is good health. However, I wouldn’t have the same drive to be healthy if I didn’t like my appearance. Vanity is motivating.
Research and reading create opportunities and advantages.
Generally, I don’t read fiction because I read to achieve goals. I have to read biographies, innovation, and marketing topics daily to grow my business. In addition to reading, I regularly watch documentaries and interviews that capture concepts that galvanize my entrepreneurial efforts. What may look like work to some people is joyful to me.
Enlightened selfishness as a personal philosophy.
As postulated by writer Boom Shikha, diverting from a daily ritual that ties into my goals is non-negotiable. Enlightened self-interest means that I will not run roughshod over people if our efforts towards success are mutually beneficial. I will assist and ask for any necessary information. However, if distractors become impediments to the desired outcome, they will be removed for being disruptive to the process. And I won’t have a scintilla of regret.
Money is a tool for options and solitude.
Suppose you ask people, “What would you do if money was no object?” the responses run the gamut. However, strategic thinking introverts seek fortune over fame to gain more personal power. They have no aspiration to live out loud nor shine a spotlight on their daily activities. For these introverts, money is essential to living life on their terms, and this generally means spending more time in solitude to do more of the intellectual work that satisfies them. Like any tool, money allows for building a life free of distractions and infringements.
For strategic thinking introverts, pursuing an intellectually driven life is the only way to live.
Performing well, looking presentable, creating opportunities, and making money are the foundational principles for success.
To do otherwise is self-betrayal.
Shikha, B. (2017, March 23). It is lonely living an extraordinary life. Medium. Retrieved from: https://bit.ly/3xhSp3p.