Rob has posted excellent thoughts on being an introvert, yet an entrepreneur as well; two things that might not seem they would work together. As an introvert, a fellow INTP, coping with what can sometimes be near-debilitating is a subject of great interest to me.
I can see how immersion in the entrepreneurial flurry could actually help, as long as there is always a little down time. It tends to affect my business negatively, but more so if I am less busy, less so if I am more busy. Yet it is a barrier to becoming busier; a conundrum.
The funny thing is, I often remark to people about how shy I am, only to be told by the more casual observer “you’re not shy!” I am quite capable of putting on a more gregarious face, but it takes a toll and requires balance. I also act more gregarious with people I already know. Catch-22.
Here I am, needing to sell – not merely engage in some relatively standoffish marketing – and needing to increase my volume of billable work by 50% for starters, 100% to break through the “need two people and can now afford it” barrier. Yet between introversion and the residual terror of picking up the phone that doing high volume tech support tends to impart, I can hardly bear to answer the phone (and need the aforementioned greater volume before I can have someone answering for me). It wouldn’t hurt for me to do personal cold calling, but there is no way that’s going to happen. I can make myself physically sick anticipating such a task. Thus the approach of building enough volume, gradually if that’s how it has to be, then lighting things up to a new level by bringing on someone who can “do sales.”
Not that I can never manage to flare up into evangelical mode, but I don’t do it the way one of my former partners could. Yet he was more introverted – or at least far moodier – than I am. If you truly believe, brothers, then that can be far easier than other things introversion impacts. It’s all very challenging.