Ever since I learned about introverts and extroverts in my high school psychology class, I considered myself an introvert.
I was always the person sitting in the corner quietly whenever I met new people.
I felt better when I was alone or in a small group of people, and I felt drained if a stranger wanted to talk to me and asked me a lot of questions.
The only situation in which I could really talk to people was with people who I’ve already known for a long time, like my friends and family.
And even there, I would struggle with it unless I got really excited about something.
I still remember when I read my first non-fiction book. It was the book called I Will Teach You to be Rich by Ramit Sethi.
I was very enthusiastic about reading it because it helped me completely change the perspective of how I looked at personal development.
It felt like I discovered secrets that nobody around me knew, and I wanted to share these secrets with everyone around me.
So I did…
And here’s what they said.
“You’re reading a book called I Will Teach You to be Rich? Wow, you’re so greedy, all you think about is money”
When I tried to explain that it was actually a really cool book that will help me save money and consicously spend it on the things I love, they didn’t really care.
“Well, you know, there’s more to life than money. People who earn a lot of money tend to become douchebags.”
It didn’t matter if I talked about specific systems and strategies that could help them save thousands of dollars immediately with very little effort. They didn’t trust me.
What do you think happened when I told them that I went on to spend $1000 on an online course that was supposed to teach me how to start my own own business?
They thought I was crazy, and that I would get scammed and my credit card information stolen for sure.
They just didn’t get it.
Even as I went on, started my own business and began to earn decent money with it, they still wouldn’t support me.
“Why can’t you just finish university and get a job like everyone else? That’s much more secure.”
I was frustrated.
The people who I trusted the most, my family and friends, didn’t trust me and didn’t believe in me.
No matter what I did, I couldn’t change their opinions.
Has something like this ever happened to you? Did you ever get really excited about something, only to find out that the people around you don’t really support you in it and don’t want to talk about it?
If yes, keep on reading.
As I realized that my approach wasn’t working, I decided to try something new.
Instead of desperately trying to change the people around me, I decided to find other people that might just understand me.
So I started looking around to find like-minded people.
I looked for a while, even asking other people around me if they knew where I could find other people who had the same weird ambitions as I did.
I didn’t manage to find anyone.
And even if I did find someone, I probably wouldn’t reach out to them because my social skills sucked and I had no idea how to get them to have coffee with me or what I would even say to them when we would meet.
So I started working on my own business and isolating myself from other people.
In a way, that was a good thing because I wouldn’t waste my time and energy by convincing others to support me.
It allowed me to stay focused and put in a lot of work, which was good, but on the other hand, I always had a feeling that I was missing out on something.
I missed going out and partying and hanging out with friends.
I wanted to share my knowledge and experiences with others.
I knew that there must be other people out there that were similar to me, but I just didn’t know where to look to find them.
Eventually, step by step, I started to get it though.
I started to understand why I can’t find anyone to talk to.
It was because I made it all about me.
I wanted to learn from others.
I wanted to talk about things that interested me.
I wanted to have someone to talk to when I had a problem that I couldn’t solve.
I, I, I, me, me, me.
I was putting myself in the center of my universe instead of others and they could see right through it.
When I changed my perspective and started focusing on how I can help other people without getting anything back in return, my communication with people started to improve.
I could see that when I stopped talking so much and started to listen to them and pay attention to what they say, I would be able to connect with people much better.
I also stopped looking for people that were EXACTLY like me.
Of course it was hard for me to find another productivity consultant in Slovenia, but it was much easier to find other freelancers and entrepreneurs, as well as people who were at least remotely interested in self-development books.
And I started looking outside of Slovenia.
I started reaching out to other people through the internet as well and scheduling video calls with them.
With time, I met a lot of other people who considered themselves as introverts, but had a lot of friends who they could talk to all the time.
They showed me that social skills aren’t something that’s pre-defined, it’s a skill that anyone can learn and even master, if they put their mind to it.
In fact, here’s an interview that I did together with one of those people, my dear friend Raj Bandyopadhyay where he explains how he moved from being a shy software engineer to leading a meet up group of over 1200 people.
So, after I did the following:
1) Changed my focus from “me” to “them”
2) Stopped looking for a person that was exactly the same as me
3) Realized that socializing is a skill that can be learned, and not something that an introvert can never to
Now I’m talking to at least 5 different people each week about our new business ideas and the productivity systems that we’ve developed over the past week.
AND IT’S NOT WEIRD.
In fact, they love talking about it. They love sharing their stories and helping each other improve.
They love talking about things like writing blogs or hosting online webinars.
Around them, I can really feel like myself and even if I just met them twice in my life, I can talk to them for hours!
I don’t feel like an introvert anymore.
After working on helping others as much as possible, a lot of new opportunities have opened up.
I frequently get e-mails like this where I get introduced to other successful and inspiring people.
I have mentors that help me save hundreds of hours of figuring things on my own by giving me feedback on my business.
Just a couple of weeks ago, Ramit Sethi actually flew me in to San Francisco to record some video together with him.
None of these opportunities would have happened if I kept the “I, I, I” focus.
They all came out of just wanting to help other people in any way that I can.
And the best part is, you can do this too.
You can find people that will help you get that six pack that you always wanted or to run a six figure side-business.
But you probably still don’t have a clear picture how to do it, right?
I mean, I told you what worked for me, but how can you actually implement this by yourself?
- How do you find the people that would want to talk to you in the first place?
- When you find them, how do you reach out to them and ask them to meet you?
- And when you finally manage to meet them, what do you say to avoid the awkward silence?
I use a system that will answer all of those questions and help you find the first 3 people who “get” you.
This system hasn’t worked only for me, it has worked for hundreds of other people that I’ve met in the past.
And a lot of them used to consider themselves as introverts just like me.
If you join me at my upcoming Free 5-Day Success Bootcamp, I will show you the exact system that I used to add massive value to Ramit Sethi and get invited to grab lunch with him in San Francisco. I will also show you the scripts and strategies that my friend Jaka used to expand his network and land a job that he loves.