#78 - How INTROVERTS Can Create Success + A More Fulfilling Life ft. Chelsey Brooke

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Where are all my introverts at?

I don’t know if you know this about me, but I identify as an introvert. Often, that statement is met with shock, but I am! I am such an introvert! And in today’s episode, I’m so excited to bring on Chelsey Brooke, a trained therapist who is on a mission to help introverted women better understand their introversion and realize what a superpower it truly is!

In this episode, we talk about the misconceptions, the true differences between introverts and extroverts, some of the natural tendencies from a psychological and a biological basis, as well as a number of tangible tips for introverts to help them create more success and fulfillment in your life!

This episode is so near and dear to my heart as someone who identifies as an introvert and has felt misunderstood as an introvert, I love that this is Chelsey’s mission and she gives so many incredible tips that we can use to better our lives as introverts! Enjoy!


  • What it means to be an introvert

  • What are some of the misconceptions when it comes to introversion

  • Some of the science behind why Introverts react to situations the way they do, zone out, or might sometimes seem disconnected or disinterested

    • Related to this, I actually wrote two science articles about this here

  • The natural tendency of Introverts to want to learn and grow themselves

  • Tangible Tips for Introverts to Create More Success + Fulfillment

    • Protecting your Energy, especially in terms of your morning + your morning routine

      • Prioritize personal development, exercise or other solitary activities

    • The importance of taking breaks

    • If you can’t take breaks, surrounding yourself with inspiration + things that bring calm

  • How Success + The Pursuit of Success Differs for Introverts

    • Know that it’s Subjective - There’s No Right or Wrong!

    • Your Personality, Temperament and the things you enjoy are still important

    • Getting it all out there and going much deeper than a dictionary definition

    • Start with a brainstorm

  • Dealing with Extroverted Family Members

  • Setting Boundaries and Not feeling the Need to Justify It

  • Introversion and How it Comes Up At Work

    • Own Your Schedule At Work

      • Putting a Sign Up

      • Closing Or Locking Your Door

    • Give yourself breaks that allow you to get away and get some alone time

    • Setting Boundaries at Work

    • Learning To Advocate For Ourselves

  • How to Find Your Path as an Introvert

    • Wanting to Find Your Passion, but Not Knowing Where to Start

    • We’ve Got to Address Our RElationship with Fear + Our Limiting Beliefs

    • Mindset + Stripping Away the Labels that Have Defined Us

    • Having Compassion to Yourself the way you would your best friend!

Resources in this episode:

Book a transformation call here

Books in this episode:

  • “The Introvert Advantage: How Quiet People Can Thrive in an Extrovert World” - Marti Olsen Laney - click here

  • “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do” - Amy Morin - click here

  • Hal Elrod’s Books - “The Miracle Morning” here and “The Miracle Equation” here

About Today’s Guest…

Chelsey Brooke is The Pathfinder! She specializes in helping introverted women discover their true and authentic path to a successful and meaningful life. Her mission is to inspire introverted women to live connected to their true purpose and to share the most real version of themselves with the world.

Connect with Chelsey:

Transcript of this interview:

Ellyn: Hi Chelsea, how are you?

Chelsey: I'm great. How are you today?

Ellyn: I'm so good. And I'm so excited to talk introverts today with you. I loved the email that you got. You sent me when you reached out originally and I, this is going to be so fun today.

Chelsey: I know, I'm super excited. Anytime I get a chance to talk about introverts, how to help them with their passion and finding their paths and any support we can give introverts today is a blessing for me. So I'm super excited to talk today.

Ellyn: Ah, yes. So great. And I know there's a lot of introverts that listen to this podcast, so they're definitely gonna benefit, um, to kick things off, can you just tell us a little about Chelsea? Like how you kind of got to this point where you're like, I want to help introverts.

Chelsey: Yeah, it's definitely a process. So, um, first of all, I was born and raised in bowling green, Kentucky, if anybody knows or that is, so if you hear a little bit of a Southern accent, you know where that's from. Um,

Ellyn: I also love your accent, I might add.

Chelsey: Yeah, thank you. Um, so I'm a professional mental health counselor. I'm a writer,, blogger and Pathfinder coach, which I'm sure we'll get into a little more later. So a little bit of background about me. Um, growing up, you know, I had so many of the challenges that, um, are so common to introverts, often so awkward and out of place during social situations. Didn't understand the anxiety that came from making small talk or being in large groups and received so much advice about how I should just get out of my shell or speak up or stop thinking so much. And that just really does not resonate with me. I was fortunate enough to be raised by a mom who was an introvert and an empath as well. But at the time, for many years, we didn't label it as introversion. So even though I knew I was different and that was okay, we still didn't know what to call it. I discovered in my teenage years that actually wasn't, you know, any of those things that people have said about me, I was simply an introvert. So being one of those typical overachiever kind of introvert people. I started college at 16.

Ellyn: Oh shoot. Really?

Chelsey: Yeah. I got a little bit ahead. Start on, on life, I guess. Um, so I majored in psychology and sociology and that's really when I was able to dive deep into the introvert temperament and personality and learn the best ways to work with my personality type. And then from there I just wanted to learn more and more and wanted to help people as well. So I went on to my graduate studies and earned a master's degree in counseling. So at that point is when I began practicing as professional counselor and you know, started working with people and my passion for introverts just grew even stronger. And so that's also when I started being a Pathfinder coach and working with integrated women to uncover their true paths and passion and taught them the unique mindset strategies that they would need to embrace who they are because we are so often misunderstood and really create the career and lifestyle that they truly left.

Chelsey: So, um, in a nutshell, basically what I do is, um, you know the Disney movie, Pocahontas. Oh heck yeah. Yeah. Right. It's like my favorite childhood. Um, so he knows the scene where Pocahontas is like really distressed and she's trying to figure out what to do, what the best decision would be. So she's sitting and talking to grandmother Willow and she has the compass and in her hand and, and the dye will start spinning faster and faster and the leads, they're swirling and the wind is wishing and it's crazy and chaotic. Like our lives are filled when you time. Yup. And then all of a sudden it just stops and the Dow points straight and she, she knows the path she has to take. And so that's what I do. I help integrate her women and cover that to your path and teach them to be authentic to who they are in the process.

Ellyn: Oh, Oh, I'm so excited to dig more into this, like this Pathfinder thing. I'm curious though, so you talked about the fact that you kind of realize when you were in high school, I think it was that you were truly an introvert and that not all of these other labels didn't apply to you. Like how did that feel when you finally had that clarity of, Oh my God, this is what I am?

Chelsey: Mmm. Yes. It was so liberating. And that's why every, anytime I work with people, I always spend time helping them figure out what it means to be an introvert. Because, you know, we may know on a basic level like introverts, like spend time with themselves. That's how they recharge and they can, um, you know, don't necessarily like small talk and things like that. But, um, there's so many things to know about integration and how it affects your life then your behavior and how you feel and the way that you think. And so I love spending time with people just explaining that part because it is so refreshing. And for me, when I found out it was, it was really life changing. Um, the first book I read on it was, um, to integrate advantage and that's when I recommend to my clients a lot as well because it is so insightful and it's just like you found your home, you know where you're meant to be and um, yeah. So it was just such an insightful experience and I'm so grateful now that I get to help other people create that for themselves because it's truly life changing.

Ellyn: And just like liberating, I'm sure. Like just, I know that's when I realized what introversion and extroversion truly were. I all of a sudden felt so understood because I feel like there are so many misconceptions. Like my perspective growing up on introversion was you're shy and you're kind of a wallflower and I never really felt like that applied to me. So what from your perspective, are some of those big misconceptions when it comes to introversion and extroversion?

Chelsey: Yes. Great question. And there are so many, and it's something I really love talking about because there are so many unimportantly, it's so easy for us as introverts as we're growing up because so many of us don't know about introversion and what that means until later on. So you hear all of these growing up and then it becomes, you know, you accept that as part of who you are, even when it really isn't true. So like you said, one of the big ones is definitely that we're shy, antisocial route or stuck up. And that's really unfortunate because introverts are often some of the nicest people that I know and the most thoughtful ones as well. So, um, I think this was really damaging because it's not only explicitly said like, wow, you're just, you seem really shy. It's also just subtle. It's like, so people not only ask why are shy, and they also suggest that not being super talkative or super energetic or outgoing means you must be unfriendly, rude, and unhappy. So introverts are often looked at, as, you know, at parties or something. Like, are you okay? Are you sad? What's wrong? Just because you're being quiet and it's so frustrating and draining to be, to be misunderstood that way.

Ellyn: And it's kind of like what you said about like when you were growing up that people were almost treating it like it was wrong. Somehow. Like somehow you were doing things wrong because you didn't, you weren't talkative, you weren't, you know, like all of these extroverted walk into a room people and like, Hey, look at me and I, I mean I had my moments where I'm like that, but all through college and really into high school, I was only really outgoing and energetic and enthusiastic around my close friends. Like if I did not know you, I was not going to be like that. And it didn't never sat well with me that that was somehow looked at as wrong.

Chelsey: Right. It's like there's this motto or expectation of what the standard is and it's always an extroverted ideal. It's like you need to be outgoing and talkative and always know what to say and love making small talk and going to all these places. And so you just, you're taught from such a young age, even settle things that our parents probably do that they don't even realize is promoting that extroverted ideal to their kids to want to go out and play and makes sure they're not too quiet and make sure they get socialized. So all of that stuff, it can be so damaging to who we are. I know our self worth and if it's just not true.

Ellyn: So then what truly is the probably most accurate representation of introvert versus extrovert then?

Chelsey: Hmm, yes. So one of the, one of the things that I found really interesting, I just Googled introvert just for curiosity one day and I saw that in the dictionary actually defined an introvert as a shy, withdrawn person, which first of all is so incorrect. And sadly it shows the bias even in dictionary that it's so prevalent in our culture against introverts. So even introversion and shyness aren't the same thing. You know, while some introverts are shy, some extras are also shy. So introversion has to do with your temperament that you're born with and the way that you process the world. And um, information. And then shyness is actually a social anxiety that can affect any personality. So one of the biggest differences between introverts and extroverts is how we process and respond to information in different environments. So it's kinda like this for extroverts, they hear something, you know, they're in a conversation and they just respond to it.

Chelsey: There's not much processing between what they hear in their response. Introverts on the other hand, here's something or ask the question, and their brain began to think about all the possible answers they could give and then what the reaction might be to those responses or other times that they've been asked questions like that. Then they start thinking about which way they like to respond and try to find the right words. Do you, and of course all this is going on in the back end in your brain. So the person just standing there waiting for you to respond. At this point, it's been far too long and people begin to wonder if you're oOkaykay or they've moved on altogether.

Ellyn: Okay! *laughs*

Chelsey: One of the really frustrating things, but it just really explains how the interaction with brain is just different. Literally their brain uses a different, more complex, longer pathway. So while we might not respond immediately to something, we're also making more connections in the moment than an extrovert might make. And then of course another big difference is that introverts are drained by interacting with other people or being in busy environments, but even when they're enjoying themselves, even when they're around people that they love their energy, you know, their battery if you will, is still being drained while extroverts become more excited and really pumped up from being around people and they get drained when they're alone. So that's kind of the basic difference between introvert and extrovert. I can go into more detail about a brain based explanation if you bike that just a little.

Ellyn: Yeah, yeah, that was great. Um, I actually heard that I was super familiar with is the idea of like energy and what drains up kind of powers up are I liked that you said batteries cause that's often how I describe it when I'm thinking of it. I use all the time when I was in graduate school, like to paint a picture for somebody. If you're listening to this and you're like, I'm an extrovert, I have no idea what you're talking about when it comes to like social, let me paint a picture for you because this used to happen to me all the time in graduate school. I would be out with my friends, we'd be out at a bar. I mean I was known to karaoke in college, so I was probably doing that. Um, so like we'd be out and I'd be having a great time with all of these people that I really liked and I would hit a point in the night where it was literally like switch flipped. I would go having so much fun and totally enjoying myself to just be like, Nope, I'm done. I want to go home. And it was like, it seems silly that it was that dramatic, but it really was. And what kind of happened was my, my battery ran out, my social batteries ran out and I would just like, Nope, I'm ready to go home. I call it, I'm done peopling. That's what I often say now.

Chelsey: That was great. Yeah, we should get that on a tee shirt.

Ellyn: Yeah, I'm peopled out. Yeah,

Chelsey: Exactly! And that's the perfect example because what is your brain just reached that threshold where you were like capped out. So, um, you know, a little bit more like brain-based explanation on that. So,

Ellyn: Well, I'm a former scientist. I love it.

Chelsey: Right. So you know, we know neurotransmitters are the chemical messengers in the brain, so they create all sorts of feelings, moods, behaviors. No, they keep us down and keep us going. So introverts are more sensitive to certain neurotransmitters like dopamine and adrenaline, which means we are more easily overwhelmed by noisy environments and prefer quiet or more relaxed environments most of the time. Of course like your story, we can go out and enjoy noisy environments, but it just depends on our energy levels. We get to a certain point and our brain is just kind of fried and it's tapped out. It's done. So for example, introverts may feel, you know, really good in a quiet library, but the soft smell of coffee in the air and they want extroverts may find that totally boring and not stimulating enough because their brains need more going on to get that good feeling and their brain.

Chelsey: And that's also why introverts can appear to just like zone out or have difficulty thinking or finding the right word or keeping a conversation going and busy, busier environment. So a lot of times we may look bored or aloof or uninterested when in reality we're just overwhelmed and trying to process all the information going on around us. That a little bit of planning, brain-based explanation about what's going on and why. I think it's so important for introverts to understand what's going on in their brain because there's, there's a chemical, you know, reason that we feel overwhelmed and, and we just, we get to a point where we're tapped out, like you said

Ellyn: I love that you brought that up because I mean, as a scientist and as somebody who, like I, I've, even if I wasn't a scientist, I'm very analytical, logical thinker, you know, so that kind of, there is a biological basis for why you are the way you are. I felt so comforted by that the first time I read something very similar to what you were just talking about with the neurotransmitters. Like it's, there's a reason why I am this way and that reason boils down to biology and it made me feel like kind of like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. The first, the percent. Yeah. So I love that information.

Chelsey: Yeah, exactly. Yup. That's why it is so refreshing and insightful to learn about that. And a lot of times I find that introverts, they're often seeking that out. Like, we love taking quizzes and we love learning about ourselves. So many introverts are these, you know, sales help junkies. I know I am. So

Ellyn: I'm always learning! I love learning.

Chelsey: Yes, exactly. So yeah, and it's just so helpful and so liberating like you said before.

Ellyn: Mmm. And kind of related to that idea of energy and I probably went into that day with my friends having a lot of energy and we're kind of getting into a little bit of the tangible tips here are my perspective. One of the biggest ways that I recharge my batteries, and we were kind of talking about this pre hitting record today, is that I'm very careful about how I spend my mornings, particularly because how in the work I do with coaching, I'm, I'm a professional tutor as my like day job. Um, I'm doing a lot of one on one interactions and there's a lot of like intensive effort that goes into those interactions that requires a lot of social energy. So like, I don't expend social energy in my mornings. My mornings are about me, my mornings are my introvert time. That is kind of the moment, like if we're talking, bringing that battery analogy back where I'm charging my social battery. So if you're an introvert who struggles with managing your energy levels, that's something I do to help balance it. Chelsea, do you have any other tips for how to manage that energy level?

Chelsey: Yeah, that's a great one. Especially your morning because it, your morning often sets the tone for the rest of your day. So that's something I love talking to my clients about as well. And we'd go into even more detail about it, but just how important your morning routine is to be structured and that you have that time for personal development or exercise and meditation or yoga or whatever it is that you like because it's going to set the tone for the rest of your day. And then, um, you know, most of us go to work or like you said, um, you know, you're doing tutoring and things like that and working one-on-one and as I still do counseling as well, that's also a lot of intensive one-on-one work. So I'm very, um, I'm very prepared in my day to set in specific times for breaks. I don't give myself too many clients back to back to back because I need like a mental reset button and a break.

Chelsey: I need to like get out of the office. I'm fortunate enough when I do counseling to be able to leave. I don't have to stay there. I don't have to sit in my office all day. So when I take my breaks, I will, you know, I'll go to the car, I'll just drive around. I'll just give my mind a break and a mental reset and before I have to go back. So that's definitely a big tip I would give to anybody who has had to work or careers somewhere where you're around people that take as many breaks as you can. Don't be afraid to, to take your lunch break and go for a walk or go to your car if the break room can even be a source of really mental draining time. So, you know, don't be afraid to, to schedule in those breaks for yourself and take them when you need to.

Ellyn: Oh so true. You are a woman after my own heart because that last thing is something I could definitely be better at. It's tricky with tutoring because I so have to work around students' schedules and all this stuff and sometimes I, and I don't love this about the current job situation, I'm sitting for five and a half hours button, a chair back to back to back appointments and I don't love it and I wish I could schedule and more of that break time and that kind of like white space between appointments.

Chelsey: Yeah, but even having something you know at your desk like, I don't know, I'll a little plant or an inspirational quote or like I love now they're making dough with like essential oils. Then too, like just having something to give your senses a break even if you have to sit at your desk for a certain amount of time. I love that too. Just bringing in anything that brings calmness or energy to you instead of, you know, just sitting there draining the whole time.

Ellyn: I'm like literally as you say that looking at my desk going, I do have inspirational things around me. Maybe that's why I can get through it.

Chelsey: Yes, I do too. Yep. I have path stuff all around me. I have a little boss lady plaque on my desk. Yeah, just anything like that, that kind of, I don't know. It gives you a mental break and reminds you of things that you like. Things that are refreshing to you instead of just having to sit and not get a break at all for hours on end.

Ellyn: Also letterboard's friends. I feel like introverts would like letter boards. I bought one and I am obsessed with it. I do a new quote every week and it just makes me happy. Yeah.

Chelsey: That's awesome. I love it.

Ellyn: I feel like we've kind of been veering into this idea of, of success, the success mindset and how to set yourself up or success for introverts. And that was a big thing that came up a lot when we were first going back and forth about, you know, what you would talk about today. So, um, Oh, does success in the pursuit of success differ for introverts?

Chelsey: Yeah. Oh, that's awesome question. Um, so first I always tell people, you know, success is however you define it, there is no one size fits all of success. Even if you're an introvert. No, there's no perfect job for introverts. Some introverts like what you would say quote unquote is an extrovert job. But if it's your passion you can still pursue that. So there's no right or wrong here. Um, but it is important to know about your personality and your temperament because how you act when activities you enjoy, how you like to spend your time and the types of jobs or environments that we so energized or drain buys we were just talking about is all effected by your personality. So it's definitely something you want to take into consideration of how being an intranet will affect your career. Job choice. So for introverts and I'm with my clients, I always start out helping them understand, like I said, who they are, how they've been impacted by myths or misunderstandings about who they are. Because you really need to know about yourself before you can decide what exactly you want out of life. So in typical intranet fashion really has to go, yeah, you really have to go inward before you can look out to see what kind of career job would be best suited for you and even how you would define that success. So I'm always encouraging them to go inward first and we figured out who you are and then how you would define your say success from there.

Ellyn: Oh I love that so much. Like we were very aligned I think in how we kind of approached this from my coaching perspective. I always start with clarity with with my clients. Like that is step one and it always starts with getting clear on yourself. You know, I have them do personality, you know, assessments. I have them do, I love the Enneagram so I'll have them take various tests, see how they feel like they align. But it also is like getting into your values, getting into your priorities. And we do all of that. Before we ever, I ended up helping a lot of clients with career and career transitions and if they want to make a career change, how they should go about doing that. And before I'll even let them talk about what they want in career. We talk about let's get clear on you, like who are you, what do you want in your life? What do you value? And then let's talk career. Right.

Chelsey: Exactly. Because you have to address the chaos before you can get to the clarity and for so many introverts and maybe the first time that they've really talked to somebody who gets them and who understands. Um, yeah. So I have a very similar approach as well. And even with your passion, you know, people think about, okay, what do I like to do? Well, [inaudible] hash in your packet is so much more than just what you like to do. Like you said, it's your values, the ideal lifestyle that you want and making sure that all of that is aligned in that. Yeah, the best way to get clarity is first of all, figure out who you are. Um, so yeah, that's been great.

Ellyn: How would you suggest someone go about defining success?

Chelsey: Mmm [inaudible] that's a really good one. Um, so how would they go about defining success? Well, like I said, it's definitely not a one size fits all, so there's no right or wrong there. Um, but I guess some of the ways that I got introverts too, finding their, their path or finding ones success looks like for them. First of all, we have to strip away everything that they were told to be. Okay. So through my work with introverts, when I ask them what they're passionate about or what they want to do with their life, I hear rehearsed answers. Like, I'm like, that's not coming from you. Who is that? Because...

Ellyn: Is that when your bullshit meter starts going off?

Chelsey: Exactly. Yeah. I hear so many things that okay, that are their families or their friends have told them that they're good at it, that they should do. Um, you know, I worked with a client, Michelle, who only thought she like, she had two career options. She could be like a teacher or a cosmetologist because that's all she ever heard that she could be. And I'm like, no, you can be anything you want to be. So we have to remove all of those labels and because so many of us don't find out there were introverts until much later in life. We've allowed these labels to be placed on us about who we are and what we should do with our rise. So the first thing we do is remove those barriers and negative self talk limiting beliefs. Labels get to who you really are, how we say who you were before you were told who to be. Yeah. There's always a period there where you know before you had any labels placed on you, you were going to be someone and I want to get to that. Then tick raw person. Not any of the labels that you've accepted throughout your life.

Ellyn: Oh, I love that so much. And I actually, I like that you're saying it's, it's not, sometimes it's not even a full definition. I don't think like in a lot of places where they're like, Oh, define what it means for you to be successful. I mean, heck, I just said it so I'm guilty of it too. Like, yeah, I don't necessarily thought sometimes think it's a definition. In fact, I did coaching um, in 2018 where instead of kind of approaching it as like a sort of dictionary definition, I was basically asked to like come up with three words that I feel like kind of embody what success feels like for me. And my three words were that it was growth, resilient, um, and momentum. So I felt like I was being successful when I was, you know, failing, but getting back up. So that was kind of the resilient piece. Growing. So challenging myself and, and learning new skills and then momentum. I always find to be a huge piece of when I feel like I'm successful, like the snowball is rolling down the Hill when I'm being free, feel that feeling of success. So that might be a different way for people to approach it as well, if like the whole dictionary definition doesn't really resonate with you.

Chelsey: Yeah, and sometimes I, um, one of the ways that I started out with my clients is to tell them just two, you know, not um, restrict themselves. Like I often suggest doing pen and paper. Like I know so many of us wait, we type in and I do that as well. But when you're first like trying to figure out something and you're just being creative, you need to let that flow. So just write out anything that comes to mind, anything you think you might want to do, any, um, interest or passion or value that you have. Just write it all out and then go back and kind of circle the words that are saying, standing out to you and you'll start to see the themes and the pattern and then you kind of get to that core of who you are. So yeah, just getting it, Oh, out there and, and then looking at the themes and kind of, um, taking your brain and putting it on paper. And then sometimes we can see it from much clearer that way.

Ellyn: I love that you said that. That's exactly how I approach identifying my values too is kind of taking this gigantic brainstorm and then funnel things there.

Chelsey: Yeah, exactly. I love that. And I know some, sometimes introverts, you know, have unique struggles about how to find success and overcome them. So I'd love to talk about that as well if we can.

Ellyn: Yeah, yeah, definitely. That was right where I was going to go. So way to read my mind.

Chelsey: Awesome. So I'll answer that for both personal and professional situations because we definitely have unique challenges in both and how well you manage them really affects all areas of your life. So personally, setting boundaries is a big one for internet.

Ellyn: Oh yes.

Chelsey: Because we do need, yeah, cause he had, cause we do need time alone and don't prefer to spend our free time socializing or going to events all the time. We're so easily misunderstood by others. And this definitely becomes even more challenging if you're an introvert who married into an extroverted family or have a lot of extroverted friends or your family are a bunch of extroverts.

Ellyn: You're speaking my language right now.

Chelsey: Yeah. Um, there's going to be so many times when friends or family may make comments about you not attending all the family gathering or they describe you as too shy or keep quiet or they may just blatantly tell you that you're rooting anti social media to get out more. So that's why I advocate so much for insurance. You know who they are and why they think and feel the way they do because um, they can feel more confident in who they are and also advocate for themselves and set those boundaries when needed because I'll definitely need to do that. And...

Ellyn: Mmm. And kind of related to that before we pivot away from boundaries, I have had a lot of people who are like, yeah, but my, my family doesn't kind of, they don't understand that I'm introverted. They don't understand what I need. If you are ...and I feel like I can speak to this because there's a lot of extroversion in my family on both sides. And I feel like you have to sometimes explain to them what introversion means, you know from your perspective. Cause they might have that kind of misconception we talked about earlier. Like explain to them, no it's not that like I don't want to be around you guys. I just get exhausted being around and maybe not say exhausted cause if you have a touchy family they'll might be like, Oh we exhaust you. Yeah. Like so maybe say I, I have like a social battery and I need time to recharge it. So I need to take this time for myself and kind of explain to them what you need. I find so often that people want support but they never ask for support and never, and if they do ask, they never quite explain what support means. So kind of articulate like if you're in an extroverted family, you know, I, I've had a lot of my platelets lately. I'm feeling exhausted. I just need some introvert time. I need some me time before I asked other people.

Chelsey: Yes. Yeah, that's definitely a struggle that a lot of people face because as we know, even though there's questions about how many introverts and extroverts there are in the U S and stuff, we still know that there's a majority extrovert for sure. So, um, so many of us have extra to family or friends and you know, like you're saying, it is important to communicate to them because a lot of times introverts are not even asking for what they need. And sometimes sometimes it's because they [inaudible] they don't know how to advocate for themselves or they don't realize what they need either. They just know I'm supposed to go, I'm supposed to push myself, this is what I should do. So we definitely have to remove all of that. But even if you do, you know, advocate for yourself to your family and say, you know, I started out explaining more and saying, okay, well I'm an introvert and this is what that means. And you have social battery and blah, blah, blah, and you still are going to get misunderstood. There's still gonna say: "Oh, so you don't like people, so, um, you're just kind of shy. Oh yeah." And then sometimes they try to make jokes with you about, Oh yeah, you get that cause you're an introvert. And I'm like, no, they're still not getting it. Yeah.

Ellyn: That's just one of those times when you're really snarky right back and just be like, "yeah, I hate people..."

Chelsey: Exactly. I know. Because what else do you do? Is that, I mean you're trying to explain it. Um, but even if they, um, I'll just start saying like, I'm sorry, I can't make it. I mean if I want to explain it, I do, but I've also allowed myself the options and not to have to explain everything. Like I'm sorry I can't make it through this. When you guys have a great time, um, you know, it's not our job to make sure everybody understands us. And I think sometimes it's interests me think, Oh [inaudible] but they don't understand. And like I need to say it and [inaudible] as part of advocating for yourself at first and you can tell them and you can explain it to them that either will or will not be receptive to it. But then after that point you've done what you need to do and you know it's not your job to make sure everybody understands you. You just need to understand you and that's more powerful more than anything.

Ellyn: I think that right there is a takeaway that even if you're an extrovert and is listening to this, like take that what she said and really take it to heart because I feel like so often, particularly as women, we feel like we need to make excuses or have reasons for what we're doing. Like I've run into that with tutoring. Like if I've had, I signed up for a group coaching program and I had a meeting on like a Monday morning and I had a student that wanted to schedule time during that meeting and I would have had to skip this group program that I paid for and I will point out just like, you know what? I'm sorry I can't do it Monday morning I have an appointment. And like even there, I didn't even need to say I have an appointment. I could've said, you know, I'm sorry I can't do it Monday morning. I don't need to justify why I have another priority. And I think sometimes we introverts, women, whatever, we forget that we don't have to justify sometimes.

Chelsey: Mm. Yeah. That's so huge because we definitely do that. And I had a, I've had similar situations when I did counseling. Like I said, I don't, I'm have an office, I don't have set office hours. I kind of just adjust my schedule for my clients. And so for the first couple of years I did that, I was exhausted. Yeah. Because I was always trying to meet if they needed me at seven o'clock at night or in the morning, I was just there because I'm like, well, technically this is my job, so I'm just going to do that. But then I learned like I have to set boundaries around taking care of myself. Otherwise, not even gonna be able to be, you know, at my best mentally to help people. So I had to start advocating for myself and now I think I helped other people set healthier boundaries too. Because if you can't do it for yourself and you're allowing your boundaries to be pushed, then you're not really helping them grow either to, you know, set healthier boundaries for themselves. So, yeah, I think for women too, we do always feel like we have to justify and we just don't, a simple, I'm sorry, I can't make it is enough.

Ellyn: Yeah. Yeah. So cool. We got boundaries then as a big thing that the roots need to be better about doing. What are some of the other, um, obstacles and struggles of introverts?

Chelsey: Yeah, so boundaries is a big one. Um, personally, definitely, um, that's something to, uh, work on. So professionally, there can also be a lot of ways to introverts naturally behave that kind of creates confusion and upset at the workplace. So, for example, some of the common things that happen at work are, you know, let's say you don't speak at the group meetings or you wait to be asked for your opinion. So extroverts think you know, you don't know enough but you're kind of shy or insecure. So you need to be encouraged to join the group when in reality you're just taking in all the time that and you need time to formulate your own thoughts. Or you prefer individual projects over group work. So extroverts think, "Oh, you're selfish, you can't work well with others. You're 19 player." No. All introverts will love to hear that.

Ellyn: Um, yeah...

Chelsey: When, in reality, you think best when you have time to reflect and you just don't like to be interrupted. So there's still many situations, especially at work or at school where integrates, are misunderstood, good and can even be overlooked or dismissed for more important roles because of these situations and because they're being misunderstood. So there are several tips for addressing those issues, but I'll just give you a few here. I'm one of the first things is I always encourage my clients to prepare what they want to say before meeting, you know, either at work or school, if you're going to have a group meeting, if you're going to have class, you know, think of some topics or things that you want to say beforehand and then choose to make a comment at the beginning of your meeting or crash or whatever so you can focus the rest of the time and not so anxious about needing to make a cronut or being wait, wait to be called on or something like that.

Chelsey: Yeah. And also remember you can interact non-verbally through gestures, smiling, eye contact. Well most of our communication is done through our body language and tone, tone of voice anyway, so you can show participation without having to talk all the time or without [inaudible] feeling like you have to be an extrovert and then as much as possible, own your schedule at work. You know, go for a walk or sit in your car on your breaks. If you have a daily routine and you have an office kind of job, you know, consider putting your schedule on your door to let other people know when you're available and then when you're working on a project and then if you do get interrupted, you can politely ask if they can come back at another time because you're really just working on something right now and you need to focus. And that also goes back to how introverts, especially women, you know, we feel like we have to justify everything and like they have to take Thomas and they need something for us.

Chelsey: And while that may be true, sometimes you don't always have to do that because we can set our own boundaries and, and say what we need and ask for what we need as well. Bye. Setting those expectations on front that this is what I'm available and this is what I'm not. Hmm. So I think to sum everything up, the more we know about who we are, how our brain works, why we feel and think the way we do. And then using that knowledge to create boundaries and advocate ourselves that way, we're more open [inaudible] paired for any of life's challenges. And the quicker we can overcome them.

Ellyn: Uh, I feel like you just gave so many tips right there where I was just like, I felt so like vindicated about some of the things that I do and kind of why I do them. Cause I recently got my NLP practitioner certification, um, and, and I'm not sure if you're familiar with NLP, but for those of you that are listening who aren't familiar, it stands for neuro linguistic programming. And it's kind of understanding at a brain level how our, how our language and how we experiencing how, how we experience things. Oh, talking is so hard sometimes. Um, how that impacts us on a brain level. So it's, it's really interesting. I've been really enjoying it. But like we have online trainings and we have like zoom video trainings to get that certification. And sometimes I feel, you know, that very probably typical introvert thing of feeling kind of like, should I ask a question?

Ellyn: Like I don't, I'm not 100% sure. I'm trying to listen to everything else that everybody's talking about and I'm trying to process. And so sometimes I feel like I don't get as much out of those live trainings. But then lately what I've been doing is I've been coming to the trainings with questions of my own. Like I've already written them down, I already know what, you know, what thing I in particular I have a question about and that is really helped me to feel like I'm getting what I need out of those live sessions. Um, so that definitely resonated with me. And also the thing you said about like when people interrupt you when you're working on something that you're focusing on. I mean I do that at home with some times where like my mom and dad will come in or like somebody will come into the room when I'm like really working on a project and I get like irritated cause you've interrupted my chain of thought. And I sometimes feel like a jerk. Um, but I, yeah, I try to feel like oddly vindicated that you just said. Yeah.

Chelsey: And that's something, yeah, that I know introverts across the board hate being interrupted and we're like, why? Why is it just so terrible? And one of the reasons is because again, like, like I was talking about earlier, introverts process information, do a longer, more complex pathway. So like when you were [inaudible] in your work, like it took a process and brain and energy to get down in there. And so then that's when I asked you like, what do you want for dinner? You're like, yeah, I can't, I just don't know. Like I can't, you can't make any other decision because you were so zoned in and focused on what you're doing that to come up out of that know deep saw, just to answer what you want for dinner. Now it's gonna take 20 minutes to get back to the brain, you know, brains the process that you were at before they interrupted you.

Chelsey: So yes, I can totally relate to that. And that's why I always say too, like, just put a sign on your door or lock your door as you can't at least quickly say, you know, um, can you send that in an email? Can you write that a note? I'm just really into something right now and I want to get, I want to get to that later. So there's always a polite way to do things. You don't just [inaudible] as much as we might want to just like cut them off mid sentence and say I'm not available right now. There's always a polite way to do something. You just have to kind of think about it beforehand and prepare like introverts I love to do.

Ellyn: Okay. Those are helpful. Oh yeah, totally helpful. Oh my gosh. I feel like I'm learning so much and I've known I'm an introvert for awhile like this. Um, but kind of related to that and to kind of tie everything up with like a little, a little bow here. What are some of your top tips for introverts? Because you talked about, you know, being a Pathfinder, um, coach and really help helping people find their path. So what are your top tips for introverts when it comes to finding that path and really creating a more authentic life?

Chelsey: Yeah, great question. Okay. So, um, I'm going to get two big tips for how to find your path and then break those down into more detail. So a lot of people want to find their passion, but they just don't know where to start. And they feel overwhelmed because they either have no idea what they want or they have so many things that they're interested in, but they aren't clear on what they would specifically identify as their passion or how they would identify success.

Chelsey: One of the biggest things that stands in people's way of creating [inaudible] fear. So as soon as we think about pursuing something new or quitting our job, you're starting business. We found ourselves either for craft, yeah. Donating or making excuses or avoiding the very things that we know would help us make progress. And so many times we don't even know why we just have this big resistance taking that first step. So this is where understanding the brain and its process is so important. So the brain has two main jobs to keep you safe and to conserve energy. So first off, when you try something new, it takes more energy. Obviously doing what you've always done is the path of least resistance. So it feels more comfortable, it takes the least amount of effort. So that's one of the reasons you feel a resistance to really pursuing your goals.

Chelsey: Second, and I think even more important is that your brain wants to keep you safe from real or imagined harm. So when you think about pursuing something new or different, your brain goes to work. Making sure that this decision will be safe. So will it cause any stress? Is there a possibility of rejection or failure or what's happened in the past? When you tried something new, how did it go? Is there a chance of ridicule or disappointment? And if there's a reasonable yes to any of these questions, your brain is gonna start thinking of all the reasons that you probably shouldn't pursue this new path. And then you'll go into flight side or freeze mode. And for so many introverts because of the, um, the way our brain processes things, we tend to freeze and we do nothing. And we're also afraid of failing at what we want most. So if you really want that new job, new career, whatever your goals are also the thing that you're going to be most scared to fail at. So one of the things that I definitely worked in my clients on is managing our fears and limiting beliefs because you can know exactly what you want, but if you don't know what to do in those weddings come up in your mind, you'll still find yourself not creating the life you want.

Chelsey: And then one of the other big things we have to address is our mindset. So I'll go back to some of the things I said earlier about me and you strip away all those labels that we've allowed to define it because of our tendency to overthink, to replay awkward interactions and to reach for perfection. Sometimes introverts are susceptible to developing this negative self talk to keep this stuck. All those things like what our family members told us and misconceptions about who we are, what we've been told as possible for us or how we should be or what we should do with our lives. Those expectations from family members until we can be. So if we don't address them that and develop a more resilient mindset, we'll start telling ourselves the negative or limiting things that we heard growing up or from our peers. And we have to learn to be our own best friend. And I give that example like so much of what we say to ourselves, we would never say to our best friend. I asked people like, would you say that to your best friend? I mean, would you tell them? They'll probably say, Oh, you're not good enough, or they're not smart enough, or they're not outgoing enough to start that business or overcome that challenge. Like of course not. We never talked to our friends, like just run. Probably wouldn't have any.

Ellyn: Yeah.

Chelsey: Developing a mindset that's based on your strengths, where you don't get stuck thinking about all the ways you can, but focusing on all the reasons that you must and you will succeed. So stressing our fears and are in overcoming our mindset, learning how to develop the mindset of resiliency. Um, those are just a couple really big tips for finding your path and really creating a life that you're really excited about.

Ellyn: Oh, I love those. And I like to riff off of those. I love that you said introverts have a tendency to freeze. I've seen this cause introverts also have a tendency to plan. I've loved playing solo CD planner type a. yeah. Um, but like what I see so often with, with clients is that they can use, I call it planning as a bully tactic. Oh, you're essentially procrastinating on starting to do something because you don't have a concrete enough plan in place to start pursuing it. I would just say, heck yeah, plan. Heck yeah. You know, let's, let's create the how for how you're gonna achieve this goal. But don't wait to start just cause the plan isn't perfect. So like that idea of freezing, like my add on would be like, just start it like it's okay. Plan's not perfect yet.

Chelsey: Yeah. That's such a great point. Um, yeah, that sentence similar that I do is like a, as far as how we think about it is if we can't see the, the exact end goal and exactly where we want to be, then we just won't, we don't even want to start. But the whole point of our path is that we have to just take steps in. Our path becomes developed as we take those steps. So, you know, you might start out, like I started out as a counselor and then I realized, well there's some things about that. Even though I learned so much and I'm grateful for the path that I chose. Like also when I started being a coach, I'm like, okay, this is even more alignment. But had I just froze and not started at all, I wouldn't even be here. So you just almost have to put blinders on to even start because you're really trying to calm down your fears. Your fears are usually taking over. That's why you want to see the whole path. That's why you want to know from a to Z exactly what it's going to take, exactly what it's gonna look like.

Chelsey: But the fact is when you get to a certain point, you will be able to handle it. But right now you're trying to address problems that you haven't even learned solutions for. But when you get there, you will figure it out. Yeah. But Hm. On the process, personal development like who you become is more important than ever actually reaching a goal because you're always becoming a better version of yourself and a better person, which is always going to lead you closer and closer to where you want to be. If you never start, you never even developed that. You never even become that person who's capable of creating the life you want. So yeah, I love that stuff. And it's just so important to just start that again. Some of the biggest and best advice you can get is just to take even a smallest step. Just do one thing everyday for what you want, areas on what you think you want. And then you know, over time that will definitely add up.

Ellyn: Boom. Chelsea with the mic drop at the end of this. I'm just like, I had another thing to say. I'm like, no, I'm not even gonna say it. We're just going to end there. So much good stuff. And I love, you know, science science nerd Ellen just loves that you bring in the science and that we can combine the science with also also the really, really tangible and practical personal growth tips. So I appreciate so much the stuff that you had to offer today. And I have a couple wrap up questions, um, one of which you kind of already started to answer earlier, but um, we'll, we'll get to that in just a second. Um, my first big, uh, question for you to wrap things up is this is a very personal growth oriented podcast. I'm a personal growth nerd as so many introverts out there are. Um, what does growth mean to you?

Chelsey: Hm, that's a great question. Um, growth would mean always...Always pursuing something. I think that's going to help you because, um, you know, we're never going to, we always want to reach for perfection, right? Like especially, I know sometimes as introverts, we can be especially susceptible to this. We want to be good enough when we wait to be good enough to start. But it's important to realize that who you are right now, good enough, and growth just means being slightly better tomorrow than you were today. I think that's, that's probably the easiest investment. I can say it because we're never going to, I guess growth is doing anything to, to better yourself. So as long as you're, you're doing something and you are, you're learning in your, you're better tomorrow than you are today and you just keep going with that then, then you'll always grow.

Ellyn: Love that. Love that. Okay. So then, um, next question is, I love giving people, I'm a book nerd. I love giving people tangible resources that they can refer to on some of these topics. You already mentioned one great resource, the introvert advantage, um, that book. Do you have any other, uh, books that you would recommend or if you have any online programs that you would recommend or anything like that?

Chelsey: Yeah, absolutely. So, um, two books that come to mind. One that just really helps you develop a great mindset, um, is 13 things mentally strong people don't do by Amy Morin's I think is how you say her last name, M, O, R, I N and then another one we were talking about mornings and how important they are. So I love how [inaudible] miracle morning. Um, he's got the miracle morning book and then he also came out with the miracle equation, um, which is two questions to basically transform your life. So obsessed with those right now as well. Those are two awesome ones aside from of course the introvert advantage are really good. One, give you an overview introversion and to really get you started understanding that as well.

Ellyn: Love. And I've also a miracle morning like obsessed human. I've been doing it and then over 2017 I love it. I will never stop.

Chelsey: Totally. It can totally transform your life. Yes. I, it's just, it's so important. That's something else that I had to add in our program as well because when I work with people, it's Ikea got to set up a morning routine to get you, you're going for success because it's so often the tone for the rest of our day. So yeah, I love the miracle morning.

Ellyn: So true. Ah, yay. New books. I'm glad you brought through in the miracle equation cause I haven't read that one yet and I was kind of wondering how different it was. So awesome. I'll have to check that out yet.

Chelsey: It's a great one

Ellyn: then last but not least, where can people find you online if they are just like, this girl speaks my language, I want to learn more things. Introvert. Where can they find you?

Chelsey: Yeah, yeah. So I'm on Facebook. Instagram, yeah. And Pinterest, which is at the Pathfinder for you. And then on Twitter at the Pathfinder with the number four and then the letter U. And then you can also go to the Pathfinder for you.com and you'll see me on there as well. And, um, you can also download some awkward resources there on just how to get started. How does that on your path, how to develop more self belief in yourself and then how to create this resilient mindset that we've talked about. So I've got some awesome freebies on there as well on my website.

Ellyn: Uh, all the freebies, I love it, all the resources and all of the great tangible tips today. Chelsea, thank you so much. I'm so excited to share this with everybody. I know they're going to get tremendous benefit out of it. Yes, I hope so. Thank you so much for having me. I had a blast talking to you today.


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