Not everyone can be the life of our familia’s parties, or even wants to be. Unfortunately, many of the stereotypes of Latinas paint us as loud and extroverted. Some of us are shy calladitas. If you’ve ever wished you were more outgoing and naturally sociable, piénsalo. There are many advantages of being a Latina introvert. While most people consider introversion to be a disadvantage, introverted Latinas have a unique set of skills that make us invaluable to the world, employers, friends, and our familia.
An introverted Latina is often more interested in her thoughts than she is with her surroundings. Meanwhile, chatty extroverted Latinas engage more actively with their environment at the expense of self-awareness. There are advantages and disadvantages to each, depending on the situation.
Consider the advantages of being a Latina introvert over being an extrovert:
- Introverted Latinas can charge their own batteries. How do introverted Latinas recharge and reenergize? By spending a little quiet time alone. Meanwhile, extroverts require the presence of others to regain their energy. An introvert can recharge while sitting home alone on the couch. We are magical!
- Introverts notice things. Being a little on the outside of la fiesta provides a unique perspective and opportunity to make valuable observations. This is especially helpful for creative tasks and solving challenges. Many great scientists, inventors, musicians, artists, and writers have been introverts.
- Introverts are great friends. It’s common for introverts to have fewer amistades, but their friendships are closer and more meaningful. While extroverts might appear to have 100 friends, how many of those relationships are close? Introverts have other things on their minds besides casual relationships. Having a few good friends is sufficient.
- When a Latina introvert speaks, it’s important. An extrovert might say everything that pops into her mind. Some of it is important. Some of it is not. An introvert won’t open her mouth unless she thinks she has something relevant to say. An introvert won’t waste anyone’s time with idle chitchat.
- The future favors introverts. The evolution of technology, the greater reliance on technology, and the increasing occurrence of remote employment favor introverts. The world is constantly moving in a direction that caters to those that can operate in an intellectual and quiet space. Your future is bright, Latina introverts!
- Latina introverts are excellent listeners. The average person believes this, and it’s true! If you’re introverted, people will share their thoughts with you. They know you’ll listen.
- Introverts are excellent at seeing risk. The typical extrovert might charge ahead without seeing all the potential pitfalls. Latina introverts are naturally cautious which proves to be valuable in many parts of life and business.
- Latina introverts know how to work behind the scenes. Introverts can accomplish their objectives by quietly and discretely influencing others. Every extrovert would do well to have an introvert by her side.
- Introverts are more independent. A Latina introvert can get things done on her own. She doesn’t need help or an audience. Introverts are excellent at working independently and thrive in that setting. Introverts find work teams and group projects to be slow, inefficient, and cumbersome.
- We know how to give others space. Since we appreciate time to ourselves and need it to refuel, we can sense when others need space and do it lovingly. We won’t be high maintenance in our relationships, friendships or with our colleagues.
If you’re a Latina and introverted, felicidades! Being an introvert has many advantages over extroversion. Rather than wishing you were more outgoing, embrace el poder that introversion provides. You can be successful in many ways that are much more challenging for the average extrovert.
Dr. Patty Jiménez is the Founder of Recetas. She obtained 2 Masters in Theology and Ministry and a Doctorate in Ministry specializing in Latinx theology and ministry. She has over 27 years experience in Catholic Ministry and is a spiritual director and training as a wellness coach.