Can you spot the difference?

Introverts are more stimulated by internal energy as apposed to external energy. They don’t fear or dislike other people which is often the assumption, they do however dislike being the center of attention and put on the spot. They’re unable to process the energy that is directed at them and as a result can appear disinterested and aloof, when the opposite is true.

Shyness on the other hand can stem from a fear of judgment and feelings of self consciousness. Those who are shy may want to interact with others, but their fear and self belief stops them from getting involved in a lot of activities and conversations.

In the workplace, avoid forcing anyone who is introverted or shy to get up and speak in front of their peers, understand that not everyone enjoys leading a conversation or group, or may find it stressful to approach customers. Help them feel comfortable by creating a safe, inclusive and psychologically safe environment in the workplace. Invite individuals to share how they can bring their best selves to work and create an environment where those who are extroverts and socially confident come together with those who are shy and introverted, and bring out the best in each other.

Please note, there is a wealth of detailed information available from psychologists and other professionals who can provide support if needed.