By Corie Riddle, Contributing Writer

Since coming to college last fall, I have become utterly intrigued with introversion and extroversion. I had never heard of personality type testing before I came here, nor had I heard much about introversion vs. extroversion, though it didn’t take long at all for me to figure out that I was, without a doubt, an introvert. I also figured out quickly just how well-suited I was for the hectic college life with this go-getter spirit I was so graciously blessed with (not). Since then, I’ve continued to take note on the numerous “benefits” of being an awkward and shy introvert in college, and I was able to narrow it down to 7 major benefits.

1.) As an awkward and shy introvert, I have found that people are able to easily understand me. Expressing myself is obviously no task or chore. When I’m on top of the world, everyone knows it and when I’m having a pretty drab day, I certainly show it: I am an open book, with open pages for all to read. Secretly, I had always wondered why nobody was ever baffled by anything I said or confused about my feelings or actions. It never occurred to me that I might just be an awkward and shy introvert.

2.) Another benefit is that I am approachable and very sociable. Naturally, I radiate welcoming, chatty-Kathy vibes, and so people who want to just hang around and “shoot the bull” usually know they can start up any conversation with me and I’ll keep it going as long as the subject matter calls for. In reality, socialization is a daily must for me, and I find that being an awkward and shy introvert really accentuates this deeply-rooted need of mine.

3.) I have found that people often label awkward and shy introverts as leaders. This is especially beneficial, as I am often dubbed the leader of the pack. It really works to my advantage that the ideal American leader is someone who is an awkward and shy introvert.

4.) Being both awkward and shy also compliments my competitive nature. As I previously mentioned, us introverts have quite the go-getter spirit: we live and breathe competition. Nothing gets me all hyped up like campus games and sports. Though I’m not actually on any teams, I know for a fact that being an awkward and shy introvert would automatically give me a bit of an upper hand for any of the tryouts because that’s just what coaches are looking for these days.

5.) Confidence is something all shy and awkward introverts seem to radiate as well. This is quite possibly one of my most distinct characteristics.

6.) There’s also the dating aspect of it all, in which I have found to be quite prosperous. From casual observation over the years, I’ve found that it’s the awkward and shy introverts all the guys flock to, obviously. Since I began my journey as a college student last year, I’ve become a much better runner, every time I walk outside, I find myself being chased down by a different guy. Guys are just so commonly on the lookout for awkward and shy introverts, what can I say?

7.) Lastly, as a shy and awkward introvert, I am obviously the life of every party.

Though these seven benefits of being an awkward and shy introvert are pretty obvious, perhaps this will remind fellow awkward and shy introverts to take a moment and appreciate all that these dominating characteristics do for them. Awkward and shy introverts truly have the upper hand.