The Paradox of Self Love and Self Help

– by Wes Colton, Introvert Unbound

heart vs arm-2Those of us interested in doing “inner work” have two conflicting schools of thought to choose from. The Self Help school teaches us to tackle our weaknesses while the Self Love school wants us to accept ourselves for who we are, flaws and all. Pretty much all of us end up enrolling in one school while ditching the other.

Self Helpers tend to focus on transforming their old “loser” self into a more successful version. Of course, since most Self Helpers set unattainable goals or goals at odds with who they truly are, they rarely achieve them.

Self Lovers prefer cultivating a mindset where they’re okay with their failures. Naturally, this reluctance to take action often means that their actual life situation doesn’t improve.

But what if you didn’t have to choose between the two schools and instead could embrace the paradox of self love and self help?

Continue reading “The Paradox of Self Love and Self Help”

A New Definition for Introversion

– by Regina Hopkins, Introvert Unbound

introvert head

Introversion is typically defined by where you get your “energy.” Even in grad school when I was studying introversion vs. extroversion in depth, the energy definition was the one that was taught. All the books I read and lectures from my professors told me, “It’s about if you get your energy from being around others, or being alone that determines your preference for introversion or extroversion.” While I accepted this definition and went along my merry way, I never really bought into it 100%.

As fresh information comes to light and we learn new things, we re-vamp old definitions and ideas. While I’m not completely dismissing the original definition of introversion, more than 10 years later, I found a definition I like better and feels more accurate to me. Susan Cain, author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, stated in a TIME article in 2012 that introversion is really about a preference for less stimulation. When I heard that definition, it just rang more true for me.

Continue reading “A New Definition for Introversion”

How to Stop Being Lazy

– by Wes Colton, Introvert Unbound

lazy manIf you’re anything like me, you go out of your way to avoid doing the things you know you’ve got to do. While your conscious mind is telling you to “Git ‘er done,” your unconscious is more like, “Squirrel!”

Sometimes laziness is a good thing, your mind and body’s way of telling you it needs to rest and recharge to prevent burnout. But all too often it’s just a refusal to get your shit together and it’s the main obstacle keeping you from the life you want.

The first step is asking yourself if you’re lazy. If you’re not, you probably wouldn’t have clicked on this article. So now you’ve acknowledged you are (see what I did there?), you need to decide if you really want to change. Maybe you’re fine with it and are okay with the self-imposed limitations. If so, enjoy the couch time. But if you truly are committed to working on this part of yourself, the good news is you’re already halfway there!

Welcome to Lazy-Ass Anonymous. “Hi, I’m Wes and I’m lazy.” The first order of business is to drop to the ground and do a single pushup. Seriously, do it. I’ll wait…

Continue reading “How to Stop Being Lazy”

Solo Manuary: Why I’m Swearing Off Women for a Month

– by Wes Colton, Introvert Unbound

solo-manuaryYou’ve probably heard of Sober October and maybe even No Fap November, where participants refrain from certain pleasurable pass times for a full month. As a disciplined but unapologetic drinker/masturbator, I’ve never been interested in either, however as a fan of self-development I do like the idea of a personal challenge…Which is why I’m launching Solo Manuary, where for the entire month of January I vow to swear off women!

To be clear, I don’t see Solo Manuary as a criticism—or even a commentary—about women, a gender of which I’m quite fond. For me, Solo Manuary is simply an experiment to discover how much of my life I dedicate to attracting women.

Needless to say, I will still be communicating with the many women in my life, be they friends, family, colleagues, or anyone else I have a non-sexual reason for interacting with. However, for thirty-one days in a row starting January 1, I pledge not to put in any effort whatsoever towards dating, attracting, or even approaching any woman with sexual intent, both in person and online.

Continue reading “Solo Manuary: Why I’m Swearing Off Women for a Month”

Skipping a Level Isn’t the Same as Beating It

-by Wes Colton, Introvert Unbound

Skipping-levelI get it. You’re not where you want to be in life and you’re overwhelmed by all the hard work it’s going to take to get there.

You’re constantly bombarded with advice from friends, family, coaches, therapists, and gurus: Read books. Socialize more. Lift weights. Take classes. Change your diet. Find a new career. All of these options—many of which aren’t right for you now or contradict one another—no wonder you’re starting to tune them out.

Obviously, you can’t do everything at once. The key is to pick a single area and make that your focus for a while.

Continue reading “Skipping a Level Isn’t the Same as Beating It”

Why Most Advice for Introverts is Dead Wrong

– by Wes Colton, Introvert Unbound

Danger Bad Advice AheadI love everything about being an introvert, from my thoughtfulness, to my preference for deep connection, to my appreciation of solitude. As a writer and musician, introversion is central to my being and I wouldn’t change it for anything.

Writing about and working with other introverts, I’ve come across countless introvert books and blogs, videos and podcasts, Facebook pages and groups, and Twitter accounts. I’ve learned so much great stuff from these sources, including the science behind introversion, the need to accept the way our brains work, and of course all the funny cartoons.

However, there’s one rotten thread I’ve found running through most of them: encouragement for introverts NOT to push our comfort zone. Either implicitly or explicitly, the message is all too often that because you’re an introvert it’s okay to avoid socializing. And that if people think you’re weird because you never talk to or hang out with them, it’s up to them to change.

For fifteen long years, I bought into this terrible advice, not realizing how much this mindset contributed to my depression and anxiety. Only when I started to question whether being a virtual hermit was good for my mental health, did my life change for the better.

Continue reading “Why Most Advice for Introverts is Dead Wrong”