rebelling against low expectations

Is it okay to be a quiet person?


REBECCA WRITES: I was wondering this because I’m a naturally quiet person and it can sometimes be hard for me to know what to talk about. Any thoughts or suggestions?

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  • Hey Rebecca,
    I believe that having a quiet personality is not a bad thing! But it becomes bad if it is made into an excuse not to Do Hard Things. I firmly believe that God can use us just the way we are. But we can’t use our personality traits as an excuse to not Do Hard Things. Do you remember how in Exodus, when Moses encountered the burning bush and God told him to speak to Pharaoh?

    Moses said in Exodus Chapter 4, verse 1: “What if they won’t believe me and will not obey me but say, ‘The LORD did not appear to you’?”

    Then God answered him and Moses had the choice to either use his excuse, or do what God told him to do.

    (I’m still typing people)

  • You make a great point Sam, and it’s good you clarified that there is a difference. But I know in my life especially (i’m not what they would consider the “quiet type” πŸ˜‰ when I’m being quiet in groups or feel uncomfortable around certain people, it’s not those people that are doing anything, It’s that I am too focused on my self. And here’s the kicker, that is pride and pride is sinful (Herod was struck down for his pride in Acts 12…) it’s a sin that creeps its way into so many aspects of our lives and it ruins our opportunities to help encourage others and most importantly ruins our relationship with God who deserves all the glory. But yeah I don’t think being quiet is wrong, you’re right about tht. your point about how it can be though hit home with me.

  • Hey Rebecca,
    I don’t think it’s bad at all to have a quiet personality! God makes people different and I do believe He makes “quiet people” and “outgoing people.” There’s a place for both in his kingdom. But being “quieter” or more “outgoing” is no excuse not to speak out or keep quiet. Doing hard things looks different for every person. I am a more outgoing person. I don’t struggle knowing with knowing what to say; I struggle with knowing when to stop saying it! πŸ™‚ And there is a difference between a cowardly person and a quiet one. I know many courageous “quiet people” who contribute to the cause of Christ daily.So, is it okay to be a quiet person? Absolutely.

  • Hey Rebekah! It’s totally fine to be quiet. A great way to talk to people is to ask questions. And the Bible is always a great topic! Also, be the way God made you. You’re amazing that way πŸ™‚

  • I agree with what the others are saying; It’s all right to have a quiet personality (I kind of do, too), unless it gets in the way (or you use it as an excuse) to doing God’s will.

  • I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being a “quiet person.” I totally understand not knowing what to say or how to start a conversation.
    However, don’t let “quiet” define you. It’s okay if you don’t like to talk a lot, but don’t use your quiet personality as an excuse to not talk. Don’t hide behind your quietness.
    What is more important than how much you talk is what you say when you do talk. The book of Proverbs says that it is wise to hold your tongue, but it also says that the mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom.
    I hope this helps!

  • It is definitely OK to be a quiet person! I have been that way my whole life, and I have some friends who are, too. I’ve found that I notice things that outgoing people don’t always see; sometimes if we talk less, we learn more. And we can help extroverts see things that they might have missed otherwise.

    I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with being an outgoing person, I’m saying that we complement each other. Introverts and extroverts are both equally important and can work together well.

  • Rebecca,

    Being a quiet person is totally fine! In fact, I often wish I had a quieter personality! In 1 Peter it talks to us young women, and says “but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” (I Peter 3:4) In God’s eyes a gentle quiet woman is valued by God! Here is my advice for you
    1. remember that God loves you just the way you are!
    2. Think of your quiet spirit as a blessing from God. God has had to work very hard in my life to create a quieter spirit in me, he has already blessed you with that!
    3. Don’t use being a quiet person as an excuse for not doing hard things. Some of the people who are rocks of faith in my own life are very quiet, and I value their wisdom very much.
    So my answer, being a quiet person is perfectly fine, and God can still (and will) use you in amazing ways!

  • Hey Rebecca! I’m naturally the person that would rather crawl under a rock than have to make conversation. There’s three reasons why people are quiet: the first is being too scared of what other people think and it happens. That’s not so good. The other two are a natural temperament, you either don’t feel the need to say anything or you just don’t know what to say. I am both at times and that’s ok. Sometimes there’s just no need to say anything. Lots of people talk just for the sake of it.

    Like you, I often don’t know what to say or how to start a conversation and it’s not that I don’t want to talk to people. I have a very (and I mean very) extroverted friend who took it upon themselves to help me out. It has been mostly a good thing. The best way to get a conversation going is to ask open questions (ones that don’t have a yes/no answer). Things like ‘what have you been getting up to today?’ or ‘what did you think of that new coffee shop that’s opened up down the road?’ They’re not stunning conversation but they’re a start. I think the bluntest one I’ve used is either ‘well this is awkward’ or ‘don’t you just hate polite conversation?’ it lightens the atmosphere and sometimes you find you’re not the only one. And as long as you can get past the ‘hi’ you’ve made an excellent start.

    • I totally agree. Another thing I see often is when I ask “How are you” they say “Good” and when I ask “What’s up?” they say “Not much”. Guys, these responses are conversation killers! It makes the one asking have to start an entirely new conversation with the one answering and it’s very awkward.

      God bless guys,
      – Trent

      • It’s true. It can be so frustrating. You can elaborate on those answers though. Instead of just ‘good’ you can say things like ‘good, I’m quite excited about (insert something coming up soon)’ which opens up a bit. It’s hard if you’re shy but you’re also the one expected to start and maintain conversations. It can be like pulling teeth.

  • Hey Rebecca! I know exactly how you feel, since that was me not too long ago. When I was really little, I was SO shy that I would refuse to say a single word in Sunday School–or anywhere else, for that matter. Mom and Dad had to make it a discipline issue so that I could get over it, and though it took several years, it worked. πŸ™‚ For me, though, it was a kind of selfishness – I was shy, not just quiet, so I didn’t want to make the effort to talk to very many people. Though I’ve pretty much outgrown and overcome my shyness now (with the Lord’s help), I’m still an introvert. πŸ™‚ So anyway, I think being a quiet person is fine – like Amanda said, there are lots of things that quiet people can do better than talkative people, simply because they’re observing things and thinking a lot more. But never let that be an excuse to hide, especially when there are people around that could use a friend! πŸ™‚

  • I think it’s important to consider the benefits of being quiet. The Bible does talk about the wisdom of not saying a lot. Job’s friends are one example and there are several verses in Proverbs encouraging us to choosing our words carefully.

    If you’re a quiet person, then I’m loud (maybe even very loud) and I struggle with that. I say things I shouldn’t and have had to learn to bridle my tongue. I believe God makes both kinds of people and to different degrees. Discover who you are in Him and lean into that, He did it intentionally!

    Maybe ask yourself what job He has for you as a quiet person. Probably not a Youth Group Leader or a Pastor, but those are not totally out of the question (see Trent’s post). Perhaps praying for others ‘secretly’ would bring Him the most glory, quiet people tend to be great observers and pick up on things others miss. I think you should be very careful about stressing over trying to be something you’re not. It is a true thing that God made you just the way you are, for a good purpose, out of His great love for you.

  • I don’t think being quiet is bad at all! As others have already mentioned you can’t make it an excuse to not do hard things or proclaim the gospel. I do think that being able to carry on a conversation is a good skill to have though. Practice with your parents or siblings. Try asking them questions and keep the conversation going for a while. Not only will it help you with conversation skills but it will strengthen your relationship with them! I am an introvert and it can be hard for me to approach a stranger or group of people and talk with them but I find that the more I do it, the easier it comes! Also remember that God will give you the right words and help you as you do hard things for Him!

    • Yeah, I can completely understand how hard it can be to go to a group of people you don’t know and strike up a conversation. But you’re right, the more we do it the easier it comes. I need to remember that God will give me the right words to say. Thanks

  • It is absolutely okay. Many are quiet. If being quiet is debilitating to your life, you might need to seek some advice. My husband and son are both very quiet, but that is just them. They are very comfortable with being quiet. They are also very good conversationalists. I have had to learn to be quiet. If you are concerned about conversing, you might expand your interests by reading more about current events, finding out what others are interested in and learn about it. Biblical knowledge is always the best, as it teaches you wisdom and the understanding of people both saved and lost. But rejoice in your God-given quietness. This world needs more like you. Blessings to you!

    Ecclesiastes 5:2 Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few.

  • I Don’t think it’s bad to have a quiet personality Rebecca.
    A lot of people who O have met that have a well… Noisy personality
    get carried away when they start talking and they end up gossiping
    and back stabbing (Saying nasty things about their friends when their
    not there).
    So I think it’s fine to have a quiet personality. πŸ™‚

  • I’m pretty introverted, but I talk quite a bit, too. It doesn’t matter if you’re quiet; it matters if you know when to talk.

  • Hi Rebecca! There’s already a lot of great advice here, but I’ll throw in my two cents. πŸ™‚

    I’m generally a quiet person myself, and I firmly believe that there is nothing wrong with that. I would say this, however: Don’t allow yourself to be quiet just out of a fear of what other people might think of you, and don’t allow your quietness to become an excuse to not do what God is calling you to do. I’ve been guilty of both of those things in the past, unfortunately. So if one of these things or both is going on in your life, I would encourage you to step out of your comfort zone. Otherwise, there’s nothing wrong with being quiet and nothing that says you need to change that unless you want to or God wants you to.

    As for knowing what to talk about with people, I’m so with you! It can be really hard to know what to talk about sometimes. It can be especially difficult for me because, on top of being naturally quiet, I’ve been pushing myself to initiate conversations, and that just doubles the misery (lol, pardon the melodrama). I would just recommend starting with the basics. Ask people about school/work, family–anything that you know about them, ask them about it! It can be hard in the beginning, but as you get to know people, it can be easier to think of things to talk about.

    Also keep in mind that talking to people won’t suddenly become easy, and it won’t always turn out right. Sometimes a conversation is just awkward, and there’s nothing you can do about it. But if you make the effort, that’s what counts. And I bet that–even if they don’t show it–the other person will appreciate it too.

    God bless!! πŸ™‚

  • To She who calls Herself Rebecca:

    I might point out, as so many other users already have, that quietness is not a bad thing. In fact, today’s world of general loudness needs more quiet people. The only problem is when you use your personality as a barrier to hide behind. When you fall into that trap, you are not being a good witness for Christ.
    Also remember that God has a place for all members of his church. Not everyone gets to be the mouth of the church. Some are eyes, others hands, and others feet.
    Doing hard things as a quiet person may be different from the many louder people in the world, but it doesn’t make those things any less valuable.

  • I like what people are saying here: “yes, it’s totally, fine, but don’t use it as an excuse not to do hard things.” Rebecca, you say it’s hard for you to know what to talk about sometimes. That’s OK! But when you do have something to say, can I encourage you, say it! As a ‘louder’ person πŸ™‚ here’s my observation: If a bunch of people are having a discussion about something, or something like that, too often it’s the ‘loud’ ones doing all the talking (yeh, surprise!). But, if the ‘quiet’ ones contribute, they often have awesome thoughts/ideas. Now, I know it can totally be a fault of the ‘loud’ people (including me!! :/) to just hog the conversation. But if you’re quiet, and have an idea or thought, speak on up! Often it’s stacks better than all our talk. So basically: yes, being quiet is fine. So is not knowing quite what to say. But if you do know what to say, go for it!

    Hopefully, I’ve put that all in a way that doesn’t sound accusing, or annoyed, or mean, or something… I just want to encourage ‘quiet’ people to speak up when they have something to say… because more often than not it’s great!

  • Good Morning, Rebecca!
    I read your question last night and have been thinking about it since. I am naturally a more quiet person. (though put me with certain people, like my good friends, and I can get pretty “loud!” :D)
    First off, it is perfectly, absolutely OKAY to be quiet. God has made some of us to be quiet, some of us to be loud and some of us to be in between. If we were all loud – I think the world would be a little hard to live in! πŸ™‚
    However, being quiet doesn’t mean you have to stand in the corner and feel like the wallflower (where I end up some days.) My mom always told me that being quiet and not in the middle of the social pack was an opportunity for me to step back and look around and see the rest of the wall flowers. Who else is standing still and not talking to anyone? Granted, it is terribly awkward to go talk to someone you’ve never met, but hey, a lot of the time, they are more insecure than you are!
    I’ve also found it is helpful to have a “list” of questions like what is your favorite school subject and why, favorite color, etc. If you are at church, the sermon is a great topic. As you practice (’cause trust me, it takes practice) it will get easier. You will find some people who are like you, who have common interests, and who really want to know you as a person. It is always easier to talk then! And sometimes, like me, you find a person who doesn’t mind that you are quiet, and when you’ve exhausted the topics of conversation, you are just quiet together. πŸ˜€
    Thanks for sharing your struggle! It is encouraging to know that there are more quiet ones out in the world!
    In Christ,

    • Just wanted to say that I’m kinda the same way whenever I get around some of my best friends, you wouldn’t know that I’m quiet ’cause we can talk for hours. πŸ™‚ And I agree that trying to make conversation does take practice ,but each time we do it we get more comfortable doing it. Sometimes I can just hit it off with someone and other times it takes a little more conversation to get a friendship going. But it is encouraging to know that I’m not the only one struggling with this. God Bless.

  • I’m normally a talkative person, so you might find my points weird, but I’m trying my best! πŸ™‚ At my school, a lot of my friends are quiet people. I think that’s fine. They are just being themselves. SO, be yourself! If you’re a quiet person, be a quiet person! The talkers always need a person to listen to them! Good friends listen to their friends! I’m not sure if that helps, but that’s all I have.

  • Being a quiet person isn’t anything to feel bad about or be ashamed of. I’m the same way and what God showed me is that there is already a lot of people talking. What is really needed are more listeners. I became close to the person who now is my best friend without even knowing I was doing anything to earn her trust. When I asked her about it later, she told me that the biggest thing was that I listened and patiently let her voice her thoughts and feelings. People really appreciate those who are willing to listen to them. God is to. Being one to listen and then speak makes it a lot easier to hear from God because you’re not the one talking. Sometimes God just wants to be quiet for a moment and listen to what He has to say. So don’t worry, I’m sure God has a great plan for your quiet personality that will help you as well as someone else.

  • Yes!! Don’t ever think otherwise!

    I am a very quiet person. Talking to people is a big deal (unless you are one of my two or three really close friends). I used to really dislike that (and a whole lot of other things) about myself. I saw my life and how no aspect of me really fit in with everyone else as “normal”. I considered that a bad thing. As I have stopped and looked back at my life more and more, however, I find that I am extremely grateful for all those things I used to hate about how I am. So many times I see how a tendency I have in my personality or a circumstance of my life had protected me from bad influences and kept me closer to God and away from the ways of the world. It is like God knew what He was doing when He made me this way! πŸ™‚

    Being quiet is still a challenge. At least for me, I don’t speak a lot, but I think a ton! I analyze things over and over and find cool little details or connections. So often, though, I don’t have the courage to speak out and share those things with other people. At the end of the day I end up looking back wishing I had said something.

    Like someone else on here already said, doing hard things looks different for
    everyone. My youth group had their Christmas party last night. There were a lot of people there! Over the time that I was there, I talked to like three different people. I don’t think I have ever talked to that many people in my youth group in one night. It took a lot for me to do that, but some people easily talk to twice that many people every time! Just because something that is hard for you is easy for someone else doesn’t discredit the significance of what you do.

    The last thing I would challenge you with is this: don’t label yourself. What you tell yourself about you is what you will believe, and what you believe about yourself is how you will act. If you believe that you are guilty, you will act guilty. If you believe that no one likes you, you will act like no one likes you and you will find ways to see
    that even when it is the farthest thing from the truth. So, if you walk around telling yourself β€œoh, I’m just a quiet person” that is how you will act. You will link your identity with that and it becomes a comfort zone. Comfort zones stop you from reaching out beyond them and stretching yourself. Push yourself to step beyond that and only identify yourself in Christ. Because that is the only thing that identifies you. If you don’t know who He says you are then look. I might recommend starting in Ephesians chapter 2. If you don’t know who Jesus is, you can’t know what He says about you, but the Bible has that answer as well! πŸ™‚

    You are not a quiet person. You are God’s beloved creation. Live like that!

    • Awesome thoughts! πŸ™‚ You said that “some people easily talk to twice that many people every time!” I know a few people like that (and envy them!). But I would like to point out that just because something looks easy for someone, it doesn’t mean that it is. I make an effort to say hello and chat a little with every kid in my youth group (which is anywhere from five to a whopping fifteen people, lol), and to speak with the adults too. I don’t think anyone at my church realizes how hard that is for me! It’s easier than it used to be, but it can still be incredibly hard. So I guess my point is that there are people around us who may be living out “doing hard things”, but so often we don’t even realize it! I just wanted to share that. πŸ™‚
      Love your closing line! Amen!

      • That’s a good point! πŸ™‚ I never even thought of that. Another reminder that you don’t necessarily know what other people are going through. Thanks!!

    • Gee, I can so relate to you. I also am a quiet person and rather shy at times and it’s been hard to overcome – of course, I count on God’s strength to help me overcome it, ’cause I sure can’t do it alone- ,but I believe I’m getting better. Talking to people I don’t know means I step outside my comfort zone , which is good. How am I suppose to do hard things for God if I don’t take courage and step out. I’m new in my youth group ,and I have to confess that I get a little nervous whenever I go, but I’m also meeting new people and making future friends. I went to a game-day / bonfire that my youth group had and I made a few more acquaintances. I’m glad I went, even though I was nervous. Because I’m a quiet person I don’t always know what to say, but you’re right. I shouldn’t lable myself an introvert because, like yall, I am His beloved creation.

      • Yes, I understand the whole trying to find your place in youth group. I’m going through that myself, too. Keep pushing and stretching yourself! πŸ™‚

        You are so right that we must do it in His strength and not our own!

        Absolutely always remember that! Because it is true: you are His beloved creation!!

    • Amanda, this was so encouraging to me!! I loved what you said about not living under a label, as a quieter person myself. This speaks so much to me! I want to meet you!! You sound like an amazing person!

      • Labels are a big thing to me, and I think people don’t even realize they are there most of the time!! I think that is part of why they are so powerful, they really tie us down. But God doesn’t want us to live in bondage. He has freed us abd that is the best life we can live!!!

        Haha, I’m nothing amazing! But the One who lives in me and made me new when I was still dead is unbelievably amazing!!!!! πŸ™‚ God bless you, Riley!

        Loved and Not Alone,

  • β€œWhen words are many, sin is not absent,” –Proverbs 10:19a NIV

    β€œThe more the words, the less the meaning, and how does that profit anyone?” –Ecclesiastes 6:11 NIV

  • I really have appreciated the comments that I have seen so far in this DQ, but I’d like to ask a related question I’ve been wondering: How do encourage/disciple/befriend someone who is exceptionally shy/quiet?

    • Amen. I generally just end up praying for these people. Obviously, that’s the most important thing, but it’s also that I end up just being at a loss of what else to do. I feel God calling me to reach out to certain people, but it’s like there’s this wall between me and them. So…what I’m saying is that I’d love to hear people’s thoughts on this as well. πŸ™‚ Maybe you should just submit it as a question!

    • This is something that is very hard. I know. One of the best ways is to be consistent. Always say hello. Always invite them to sit with you. Be consistent. Show that you what to be with them. You want to get to know them. Just having someone to sit with makes all the difference.
      Silent things like smiles, cards, emails work also. Learn things about them (if you can.) Where do they go to school? What do they like to do? Do they play an instrument? Ask them a question about what they know. Sometimes, however, really quiet people are just very afraid. They need to know you are trustworthy. Don’t gossip about other people to them, because how will they know you aren’t gossiping about them behind their back?
      Above all, pray! Cause God is the best place to go for ideas!
      In Christ,

    • Hi Brandon!

      So I just saw your comment and thought I might search my brain for anything I could thing of that might be helpful. It makes me happy to see someone out there (even if you are like really far away πŸ™‚ ) who is wanting to reach out to us.

      The first thing that popped into my head is exactly what Lauren said: be consistent!! That will set you apart from the other people. Most people are oblivious to the person by themselves in the first place, but every now and then you run into someone who notices you and says “hello”. However, that conversation is usually the first and last except for the rare occasion of finding that one person you connect with. If you really, really want to make a difference, don’t give up on them. I have and sometimes still do pull the “difficult stunt” where you really don’t engage the person and you almost come across as not wanting to talk to people, but don’t necessarily let that chase you away. Of course there will always be an exception where they genuinely 100% do not want to talk to you, but usually it is more of a pre-judgment (which we shouldn’t do) and self-protection. What I mean is: when we talk to you we expect you to be like everyone else and ditch us after the first time because we are uninteresting or unimportant or whatever. When someone notices us and takes the time and effort to engage us it is the most wonderful thing – but when you are let down time after time because they never come back it is easier and safer to never let them near in the first place. It varies as to how consciously this is done. I know someone and he always says hi when he sees me and he always drags me over into the circle when people are talking and always asks about how things are. He is not perfect by any means, but it is amazing to see that he genuinely cares. He doesn’t just walk away or leave you alone if I don’t open up right away; at the same time if you really say “no, I don’t want to talk about such-and-such” he respects that.

      Unfortunately, what Sam said can be true. Don’t not reach out to a girl, but do be careful if you do. Be friendly but casual and watch body language – don’t stand too close or casually touch her, things like that. It isn’t fail safe but it helps.

      Bringing out a really quiet person requires a lot of selfless conversations. Ask them about themselves – and it is vital to demonstrate that it is safe to talk to you. I clam up more around people because my life and my personality is usually opposite of “normal” and I get weird looks and comments for it. Let them know that you accept them unconditionally. Love them like Jesus does. Find out what there “thing” is. What do they really like? What are they passionate about? Be interested in it – genuinely interested. Let them talk about it and ask them questions. For me, it is dance. If you ask me about that and I know you aren’t judging me, I will tell you about what I have been up to and try to explain how it works. The guy I mentioned earlier asks me some kind of question related to dance almost every time I see him, whether I said I have a show coming up, or an audition, or my little kids that I teach are working on their dance, he remembers and checks up on it. It is the best thing!

      Basically, just be nice, make it obvious you are happy to see us, make us part of what is going on – even be willing to give up your conversation every now and then. And DON’T don’t don’t don’t ever be talking to us and someone else come up to join the conversation or say something and just start talking to them the whole time. That is the worst thing ever! It screams “You are only important as long as there is no one else around. I only value you when there is nothing that is legitimately interesting near by.”

      The other I would like to suggest is as you get to know them well, help them out. I see so many people – and so much me as well – identify ourselves with being quiet. Once you have been around them a while and maybe your friendship is a little more that formal and surface level only, let them know that they aren’t defined by that quality. As we tell ourselves that we are quiet or always alone in the crowd, we find more and more ways to accomplish that better and better. Break that mindset and tell them that they are only defined by what God says about them and to let go of that label – it doesn’t belong.

      Well, I hope I haven’t bored you to death and I hope some of this was helpful, too. If you have more questions, or something didn’t make sense I’d be happy to talk with you about it more. And also, please understand I am not saying you have to do this every second of your life – don’t let the person you reach out to dominate and control everything you do, these are just examples and like everything what matters most is the internal. If you genuinely care about the person it will show.

      For His Glory,

      • Haha πŸ™‚ really?!
        You know, I think I’ve always been a pretty deep thinker and analytical person. But really, nothing Amanda can come up with us worth anything! Our most wonderful deeds (or words) are like filthy rags before God. That is why it is so important (and always my prayer each time I start to write) that what I say is not my words. It must be what God wants to say, and that is well worth listening too! πŸ™‚ I often learn a lot as I write my answers and thoughts here. God is refining each one of us.

        I think most of what I say is just what I know from the Bible. If those words mean anything to you, again it is not me but the Holy Spirit who prompted those words in my heart and brought them alive in yours. And glory to God for that!!

        This post here was a little different because I don’t think I had any verses in it, but I just thought over my life about how I have felt from the ways people have interacted with me and said it.

        It is encouraging to me to hear you say things like that because I am usually scared to say what I am thinking. I have always kept my mouth shut. I have an easier time saying things when I write them than speaking out loud so this has been a good training ground. It is making me really think that I might should speak up more- that Gid can use what He is sayibg to my heart in others’ hearts too! Thank you! πŸ™‚

        • Hey, so I have been thinking. Do you mind if I turn your question around and ask you something?

          I am assuming from your question about ‘what’s up with quiet people and how do I be their friend?’ that you are on the other side of the situation and you are one of the many people that we quiet ones have no idea how to talk to. So, my question is this: how do you do it?? How do you just fit in a group of people? Just about the worst feeling in the world is when I walk into a room of people. They are all talking and who knows what about. They are already in the middle of a conversation. I don’t necessarily really know them very well or at all. How do you integrate yourself into that? Where do you go and who do you talk to? What are you supposed to talk about? Do you really just jump into the middle of someone else’s conversation? And how do you start a different one with someone else? If you go up to them and say “hi” first, they reply “hi” and the question asking/conversation leading falls on you. What do you do??

          Okay, I think I’ve asked enough questions…
          Anyways, if you don’t mind, help? πŸ™‚ Thanks!

          • Sorry it took so long to respond. Truthfully, I’m not really one of “those people” who always is dominating a conversation, but neither am I one who is just quiet in the corner. Maybe being between both extremes makes me relatable to both, or perhaps it just makes me clueless. (I’d rather it not be the latter!)

            Regardless, I don’t believe being excluded out laughing group of cheerful friends is ever a particularly awesome experience. I have found myself in such situations, and it seems to me that it’s best to meet one or two of the group sometime when they’re by themselves. What you said above about finding the other person’s “thing” and being genuinely interested i that applies in this situation as well.

            I guess the main thing is listening. A group of friends won’t immediately accept you, but if you just quietly listen to what others have to say and simply think before you talk, the words that do come out of your mouth will have so much more meaning. Unless they’re complete jerks, you’ll be welcomed into their group, and eventually you might be able to develop some true friendships.

            I personally find that it is so much easier to talk to other Christians. As different as our personalities may be, we share a common bond. I have trouble talking to a group of unsaved teens. Interestingly, I have no trouble talking to unsaved adults (which can often lead to sharing about my beliefs), but the immaturity and pervertedness of teen discussions separates us to the point where I end up making myself sound stupid. Maybe that’s just because I’m weird and my Christian friends have compassion and are willing to put up with me!

            I hope that these blunderings are some help to you.

          • Hey Brandon! πŸ™‚
            No worries about the time! I know life gets busy and I figured you would get back eventually. Also, I just had performance week so I really wouldn’t have had time to read this until now πŸ™‚

            I think you are right about being in the middle. I have experienced this as both dancer and dance teacher. It gives you the ability to understand and speak both languages πŸ™‚

            You are not weird. You may be different, but that is okay. Hey, we are called to be different! And isn’t this whole site about being different, too πŸ™‚ But you aren’t weird.

            You got me thinking. I talked…somewhere around here, I don’t know if it was my response to your question or what…about quiet people not labeling themselves “quiet” or “excluded”, because it holds us back from reaching out and it makes us find it more and more. It is just as important not to label other people. People are people. We are all equal. We are all loved by God. Just like I am not “the quiet person who everyone thinks is weird and over-sheltered” others aren’t “the normal people who have lots of friends” or “the people who ignore me”. When we go into a relationship with labels and pre-judgments those will get in the way.

            Thank you for your time!!! πŸ™‚

            Loved and Never Alone,

      • Wow Amanda, this was amazing! Thanks so much for speaking up for those on the quieter side (like me) and giving out some great advice! I want to meet you!! You have some really great thoughts!

        • Aw, thanks!! πŸ™‚
          Yeah, speaking up is something God has really been teaching me since this summer.

          Hey, who knows, maybe one day we will meet!? πŸ™‚ Until then we can always talk here!!

  • It is definitely okay to be a quiet person. People who are quiet are typically more introverted in nature, and while western societies tell us that we should be extroverted and outgoing, there our countless benefits to being introverted and quiet in nature. Many famous and influential inventors, scientists, etc. are introverts.

    There is an excellent book on this exact topic called “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking” written by Susan Cain. It delves into the strengths and abilities inherent to introverts that western society usually overlook and undervalue. Here’s a link to the book, I’ve read it and highly recommend it to anyone with any interest in this topic.

    Here’s a link to Cain’s Tedtalk that basically gives a synopsis of the ideas in her book:

    At the very least listen to the tedtalk, there is a lot to be gleaned from it.

  • It is OK to be a quiet person. For some, they just have that personality, you just don’t want to shut yourself from the world.

  • My mom and i were just discussing a book about the power of introverts and how our world says that being quiet is a bad thing or “lame” when it really isn’t. It has lied to many people making them believe being quiet is a bad thing when many great people were and are introverts or quiet.

  • Hi Rebecca!

    I am a very quiet person too! Being quiet is not a bad thing at all. My sister has a very outgoing personality and she finds me very boring because we are so different. Since I am around her almost my entire day we sometimes don’t hit it off that well but other people shouldn’t find your quietness rude or weird. Your parents shouldn’t mind either if that is another thing that concerns this question. I have a friend who is very outgoing and I have a friend who is just like me. Maybe even a bit quieter! We are very close with each other and share and ask each other stuff. Just like normal friends. Like Trent said, “We can’t use our personality traits as an excuse to not Do Hard Things.” So our personality shouldn’t get in the way of what we love to do or what we like to talk about. Everyone has their own personalities and most are friends with completely opposite people! God made Man to be companions on this Earth and be His most treasured family in Heaven no matter our personalities! So don’t be embarrassed or scared of things or yourself because of your awesome personality!!!

  • I think my main problem has always been the expectation of being broken down instead of built up by people. I always feel like they’re judging me and it’s caused me to slowly move farther and farther away from any large group, to the point I avoid them altogether unless it’s people I really know (which is very few). Anything I try to do to help ends up for nothing it seems like :. I’ve never had anyone just randomly come up to me at youth group or anywhere else, even to simply sit next to me when I’m alone or looking depressed. Yes, I’ve gone and sat by other people…but they actually got up and climbed over the chairs to sit in the next row…

    That’s why I have been having a hard time continuing in anything. I feel I have no real community, my rest turns into anxiety, worship gets quieter, and fear of man builds with no escape except when I’m home, hiding in my room. I haven’t always been a quiet person, but now I can’t find my voice and I tend to make things awkward very fast.

    (Sorry it’s probably the longest thing I’ve ever posted, it’s a reply to another discussion but I felt it belonged here more)

    • Hi Megan,

      I can relate to you, because I haven’t always been a quiet person either, but I think that circumstances in my life as I grew up have contributed to my personal battle. Last year I felt just like you do, having a hard time doing anything that involved anything social. But I have learned so much, I hope what I have to say about my experience might help you too.

      First, I don’t know if you read any of the other comments on this discussion, but I totally agree with @Dancing4Jesus:disqus, that before anything can change, you have to know what God says about you. The book, “The Search for Significance: Youth Edition” by Robert S. McGee really turned my life around. I can’t say enough good things about it! I would strongly encourage you to read it. The only way to freedom is to know the truth that is in God’s word: that you are forgiven through Jesus Christ, that you are completely and totally accepted by God because of what Jesus did for you, that you are deeply loved by God. I promise you, repeating these truths to yourself and learning to believe them (because they are true! It is impossible for God to lie (Heb. 6:18)) is the pathway to freedom. “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)

      Once I started to really believe these truths, I can’t express how much my life changed. I went from being depressed and alone to ready to step out and take some risks. I know this quote, “The day came when the risk it took to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” I knew that I had to step out and expose myself to the risk failure and rejection in order to grow. For me, that looked like finding community and jumping in. I couldn’t expect God to work in my life if I wasn’t willing to step out. So I got really involved in youth group, I went for two weeks to a summer camp where I knew no one, and I joined a girls’ Bible study. I’m not gonna lie, this was so hard!! But each time I took that risk, I saw myself grow.

      So I would encourage you to not give up on the community you’re already involved in, and to not give up on looking for new community. Yes, sometimes things get awkward and uncomfortable, but keep pushing through, keep reaching out to people, keep taking risks. The end results are so worth it.

      You said you expect to be broken down by people. I’ve realized that when I walk into a room full of people with the mindset that I already don’t belong and that I’m not wanted, I feel that way and I act that way. The fact is, you don’t know what people are thinking. And don’t be afraid to break free of expectations. I know it’s scary. But really, whenever I let go and say what comes to mind, I realize that people just start opening up to me, like I had always been that way. I’ve realized that most people are very forgiving and forgetful, they don’t just put you in a box and expect you to stay there.

      The last thing I wanna say that has really helped me, is instead of waiting for people to befriend you, be active in reaching out to others. It sounds like you’re already doing that, that’s great, don’t stop! When we really stop caring about what people think and instead focus on befriending others and putting their interests first, you kinda forget yourself and your perspective on life changes…and that feels good.

      Wow, that was a lot…l hope some of it makes sense! Don’t give up, remember how much you are loved by Jesus.

      Bought with a Price,
      -Riley H.

      • I’m really still trying to find a response to this, thank you ^_^ I may need to copy and keep it for later to remind myself I have purpose no matter what people tell me. I feel like it’s been engrained into my childhood to stay away from anything scary, from simple things my parents tell me like movies not to watch and books not to read, to the people I hang out with. It’s made my comfort zone much too comfortable, because I really don’t feel ready to step out of it. I don’t trust myself, if I try reaching out again to more people, I’m either going to mess up big time or get rejected, both of which hit me harder then should be expected. I get panicked just reading the Do Hard Things book, because I know it’s true that only hardship gets through to big results that everyone says is worth it. It’s an inner struggle, can’t clear my mind of it, that I’m suddenly expected to do big things like so many other amazing young adults are doing. It’s a fear I can’t actually do hard things, that I’m going to lose and won’t be able to help anyone. I read how teens feel suddenly compelled to certain areas of struggles like world poverty and modern slavery, and I don’t even know how to escape my own home.

        • I totally understand that constant struggle to never leave your comfort zone because you have fear ingrained into you, I’ve experienced it too. But you don’t have to be afraid, Megan. I know that so many people say that and it’s so easy to respond, “Yeah right, do you see all the bad stuff that’s happening in the world?” But Jesus never promised we wouldn’t have trouble. In fact, He said that we will definitely face trials in this sinful world. But He doesn’t leave us there. He told his disciples, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) He died for us to give us hope! Jesus has overcome the world! “Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death – that is, the devil – and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.” (Heb. 2:14-15) Isn’t that amazing?!

          “In God, whose word I praise – in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?” (Ps. 56:4)

          You said that you feel like you just can’t step out and do hard things. In and of ourselves, you’re right, we can’t. But when Jesus lives His life through us, nothing is impossible. “I can do all things THROUGH Christ, who gives me strength.” (Phil. 4:13) And through Jesus’ death and resurrection, you are already victorious! “If God is for us, who can be against us?…We are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” (Rom. 8)

          “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather the Spirit you received brought about your adoption…” ( Rom. 8:15) You are no longer a slave to fear!!

          Praying for you, Megan!
          Bought with a Price,
          -Riley H.

          • Thank you

            Sorry I’m unable to make much of an answer right now, I’ve had a headache and my eyes are really dry from earlier /. so it’s hard to type

      • Hey Sam, thanks! I was kinda hesitant to post this, but I sorta felt God leading me to share what I’ve learned…

        Bought with a Price,
        -Riley H.

  • Hahaha can I point out that your comment saying that you don’t usually know what to talk about precedes one of the longest, most random and goofy conversations I’ve seen y’all have on here πŸ™‚

    • Haha okay, we will say it is his fault πŸ™‚

      Hey what is up with the French toast anyways?? I have heard about it, but I don’t get where it comes from! …I have also heard warnings not to bring it up so

      πŸ™‚ Loved and Never Alone,
      P.S. Wow! Thank you, Jesus! God uses you a lot, too, Sam!!

      • Haha πŸ™‚ that’s funny
        What!? He passed Brett? Wow!!
        … How does Brett have so many comments though, by the way? Like, he doesn’t even comment on every question!
        Yes πŸ™‚ Rachel and I were talking about that today. She freaked out that she was so high up πŸ™‚ (and by the way you can thank me for your being second- you passed Trent while you were trying to get it through my head how to use the site today!) I saw it happen πŸ™‚

        Loved and Never Alone,

          • My friend Haylie knew him and his wife from our friend’s other bible study, and he was gonna drop in for one of our Do Hard Things events, don’t remember exactly what happened but they had to leave unexpectedly. It was cool to think we almost met cause I’ve seen him on here so much x3

          • I met Brett once! πŸ™‚ His wife too, although I think she was his fiancΓ© back then. It was at their last conference, back in 2011, if I remember correctly. I was incredibly shy back then, so it was a little awkward, but I’m really glad I had the opportunity. πŸ™‚

        • I agree. He should have the most! πŸ™‚
          Haha I love it πŸ™‚ yes Yoda, you are awesome! …I would say something in yoda but it wouldn’t sound right. I just speak R2 “beep bloop blop bleep boop wwrreeeeeeerrr!!”

  • Hey, Rebecca!
    Like you, I am naturally quiet person. I certainly talk more than I used to (thanks to one of my very talkative friends), but I am still reluctant to talk to people I don’t know very well. A few years ago, I challenged myself to talk to new people. Now, some of my best friends are the people that I never would’ve spoken to. I am still very shy, but I realized that talking to others has helped me become more talkative.
    You said that sometimes you don’t know what to talk about. I usually go for the simpler, “Hi, how are you?” Many people answer, “Good,” but if I ask and seem interested on how their day was, they usually answer with more thana few words. This usually grows into a long conversation that (usually) isn’t awkward in the least.

    Hope I helped!

  • If your relationships don’t revolve around hobbies, there isn’t going to be much of a relationship. You have to strive to make your relationships better all the time, and if you’re not clicking with people easily, it’s simply the background you come from. With that said, you will have to grow and develop…not change, per say, but there are simple statistics you’ve to recognize.

    • From an outside perspective I have some intuition into why people converse, but in retrospect, I would have liked to pay more attention to my surroundings. I simply ignored the things around me because it was “impolite to eavesdrop.”

  • Hi, Rebecca! I am a naturally quiet person too and I think that being quiet is totally ok. I know that it can feel odd being quiet when your around lots of peopl who aren’t, but if that is who you are please don’t feel the need to change drasticall. If you don’t know what to say you can try asking questions. People enjoy talking about themselves and love a good listener. There is this game that I play in my head where I imagine that I am having a conversation with someone and we are passing a beachball to eachother. Whoever has the beach ball is the one who gets to talk and the goal of the game is to keep passing the ball to the other person. You pass the ball by asking a question or directing the conversation back to them. I imgine people of different ages, personalities, and interests so that I can practice asking different questions. My imaginary conversations have helped me feel at ease in real conversations and I don’t feel like I’m being too quiet very much anymore. I usually start my conversations with teens and kids with questions about school, favorite subject, a recent holiday or vacation, and let the conversation move on from there. When I talk to adults I ask them about their career, kids, grandkids, their lovely house, ect. Just think about what type of person they are and ask them questions from what you pick up about them. I hope this helps you.

  • The thing that I’ve been repeatedly told, is that when quiet people speak, people listen. And if that isn’t enough of an encouragement, just remember, that God created you to be a quiet person, and he can use even that to his advantage.

  • Rebecca, I am naturally a quiet person also. I’ve become more outgoing but sometimes i just want quietness or i do not know what to say to keep or contribute to a conversation. However when i do have something to say I’ve noticed that everyone always turns towards me when i talk. Not blabbering on and on sometimes will give you the power of grabbing everyone’s attention. At first i thought it was weird because i didn’t have anything super exciting to say but then i realized that because i may not talk all the time, when i do people will listen. πŸ™‚

rebelling against low expectations

The Rebelution is a teenage rebellion against low expectationsβ€”a worldwide campaign to reject apathy, embrace responsibility, and do hard things. Learn More β†’