7 Habits of Highly Successful Introverts
Some of the world’s most famous and successful people that have contributed well and made a lasting impression to society are introverts. So, what are their secrets that helped them achieve so much? Psych2Go shares with you 7 habits of highly successful introverts:
1. Set a routine and stick to it.
Japanese contemporary writer Haruki Murakami didn’t realize that he wanted to write until the age of 29. Before that, he owned a jazz bar with his wife. Murakami had the life-changing epiphany one spring day at a baseball game when he saw a home run. It made him realize that he could write a book. Murakami submitted his first book Hear the Wind Sing to a literary contest and won first place. Ever since then, his writing career launched and his works have been translated into 50 different languages.
What helps Murakami stay focused with writing is setting a routine and sticking to it. While he was still managing his jazz bar and writing his first book, he took the time to wake up early every morning at the crack of dawn and sat in his kitchen to write. Over time, as his writing career became more serious, he would wake up at 4 A.M. and work for five to six hours. Then, in the afternoon, he would go running, swimming, or do both. Afterwards, he would read or listen to music for a bit, and finally, go to bed at 9 P.M. Then, he gets up the next day and does the same thing all over again.
Murakami states, “I keep to this routine every day without variation. The repetition itself becomes the important thing; it’s a form of mesmerism. I mesmerize myself to reach a deeper state of mind. But to hold to such repetition for so long — six months to a year — requires a good amount of mental and physical strength. In that sense, writing a long novel is like survival training. Physical strength is as necessary as artistic sensitivity.”
2. Be persistent.
Introverts can focus intensely on one task for an extended amount of time. This allows their work endurance to build up and helps them master the art of persistence. J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, has been writing since the age of six. She was a single mother raising her daughter on government welfare when she began writing the children’s bestselling series. And yet, despite the challenges she faced, she wasn’t willing to give up, because she knew she had a big idea. And to keep it alive, she understood the importance of nurturing it.
Despite being in the spotlights all the time, actress Audrey Hepburn was an introvert. To keep herself sane, she learned that wandering was imperative. When Hepburn wasn’t working on set, she made time to be alone, took walks with her dogs, and let nature be her escape.
4. Stand up for what you believe in.
Civil rights activist Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white man on a bus. By standing up for what she believed in, she inspired others to fight along with her to end segregation in America. Parks was known to be a quiet individual, but she certainly wasn’t timid. Her quiet courage reminds others that being brave doesn’t necessarily mean one has to be loud to be heard.
5. Find people who believe in you.
In a world full of critics, it’s hard not to be affected and get bogged down at times from the harsh words of your nonbelievers. Continue working hard and follow your passions anyway. Former president Barack Obama said, “The strongest weapon against hateful speech is not repression; it is more speech.” As an introvert himself who faced a lot of hatred and cynicism during his presidency, he learned that eventually, his words would still move many others who would support him. There will always be people who disagree with you and don’t support your dreams. That’s why it’s so important to find those who do believe in you and your potential.
6. Build deep relationships with others.
It’s so easy to forget about others when you’re prioritizing work. But, don’t let that create a big ego that you miss out on getting to know others. COO Sheryl Sandberg stated in an interview with The New York Times that Mark Zuckerberg, the founder and CEO of Facebook, “is shy and introverted and he often does not seem very warm to people who don’t know him, but he is warm. He really cares about the people who work here.”
Zuckerberg has also donated to the Diaspora Project that was started up by four NYU students who want to compete with Facebook by building a social network that allows people to run their own servers. He stated in an interview with Wired.com, “I think it is cool people are trying to do it. I see a little of myself in them. It’s just their approach that the world could be better and saying, ‘We should try to do it.’” Not only does Zuckerberg care about his co-workers, but also his competitors.
7. Allow your inner creative child to be free.
Studio Ghibli founder Hayao Miyazaki creates films that combine an element of childlike wonder with mature understanding of evil. In his work, he wants to show that despite there being so much darkness in the world, there is still a sense of profound hope and goodness. Miyazaki states, “I look at children and try to see things as they do. If I can do that, I can create universal appeal. We get strength and encouragement from watching children. I consider it a blessing to be able to do that, and to make movies in this chaotic, testing world.”
Are you an introvert? What habits help you succeed? Leave a comment down below!
Gould, S., & Harrington, R. (2017, January 14). 17 of President Obama’s most inspirational quotes. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
Helft, M. (2010, October 2). Mark Zuckerberg’s Most Valuable Friend. The New York Times. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
Mufson, B. (2015, January 5). 8 Pearls of Wisdom from Hayao Miyazaki. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
Rampton, J. (2015, July 20). 23 of the Most Amazingly Successful Introverts in History. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
Schocker, L. (2013, August 13). 16 Super Successful Introverts. The Huffington Post. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
Singel, R. (2010, May 28). Mark Zuckerberg: I Donated to Open Source, Facebook Competitor. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
Wray, J. (2004). Haruki Murakami, The Art of Fiction No. 182. Paris Review. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
Hello, I am an introvert, I never used be, my expectations that people are all good and then finding out they are just self serving always makes me wanna give up on people altogether. I just don’t get why people can’t help but to take advantage of others at every opportunity & why do opportunists always get them better of any situation but are always complaining they get nothing..?
Hi Selena, thank you so much for reading! I am sorry to hear that you’ve been having some negative experiences. The thing about opportunity is that yes, while there will always be a degree of competition, I think the bigger competition should be with oneself. Challenge yourself to grow, so that the present you will learn how to get better and stronger than who you were in the past. That’s the sort of advice I try to give myself when I feel insecure about going after what I want and seeing others who seem to have more talent than me. But, over time I learned that a lot of talent cannot sustain alone without a lot of hard work. And persistence. Don’t let the negativity others may display get you down, because at the end of the day, you’re doing what you can to make the best out of your life, and they don’t necessarily have to take a big part in it if you don’t want them to. While some people don’t know how good they have it until those opportunities are gone, I still think there is room for opportunities that you can find if you continue to work hard. It’s like that quote: “Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.” I hope that helps! Best of luck, really and truly!
I love this article! A lot of times, I would feel bad for being an introvert because I thought that this world needs extroverts more than introverts. However, I realize now that that part of you doesn’t quite matter when it comes to success as long as you want it and try as hard as possible. Seeing Mark Zuckerberg and Hayao Miyazaki in the post makes me feel like I can achieve anything. Thank you for writing this!
Hi Chau, thanks so much for reading! =) I’m glad you realize that regardless of introversion or extroversion, it doesn’t affect the probability of success. I agree with you that it all boils down to hard work! I’m glad the inspiring bits about Mark Zuckerberg and Hayao Miyzaki are encouraging you to go after what you want. I had an especially great time researching about them and getting to know these amazingly well-accomplished introverts on a deeper level! Writing this article actually helped me stay motivated myself. =)
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I’ve been looking up to all these people and never expected for all of them to be on this list. How wonderful it truly is to know that they are all introverted like I do. Thankyou, this article is precious.
Any advice for schizoids like me? I can´t exactly form “deep relationship with others”…