Inspiration, Ideas and Innovation

     I have the wonderful gift of being an ambivert. Having spent formative years in theater and studying Grand Valley State University, speaking in front of crowds comes somewhat naturally.  Leaving theater for broadcasting and then moving into business, leading community development organizations and coaching youth sports, being an extrovert was essentially required. In recent years the transition into academia, developing content and leading undergraduate and graduate learning, the ability to engage diverse individuals from the front of the room requires being somewhat sociable.
Improvisation as the first major certainly helps more in observation of the moment and the audience than in performance though.

    I grew up in my early child awith introvert dominance.  Buried continually in books in quiet locations and afraid of being hurt (a different discussion) by others.  I spent a great deal of time in fields or in the woods by streams exploring, dreaming and wondering. I often require periods of solitude, if even for ten or twenty minutes before or after some presentation or discussion and greatly revere introspection. Over many years I've learned the value and power that comes from "resting and knowing that He is God" as a paraphrase of scripture.

     Extroversion comes naturally to some.  For many though it is simply another skill one can develop along our journey.  Introversion is a gift that is truly required for the seeds of inspiration and innovation to become planted.  Those breakthroughs often grow though when we collaborate with others as noted in other posts.  Particularly in our American pace of work and life the time to contemplate, to be curious about the unknown and hope for the future doesn't fit the schedules.  Solving whatever opportunities confront us, as well as our own physical and spiritual well-being requires creating or committing time to introspection.  Too often in our society it's the extroverts who lead us down roads which produce community and individual harm, even if unintentional.  It is the introverts who keep us from falling, and often when the extroverts have the patience to wait and listen, lead us to a better future.

     Watch and learn from Susan Cain in this fabulous Ted Talk.


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