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Struggle with social aspect at work

(10 Posts)
Custardcream67 Tue 06-Oct-20 21:42:01

I am very introverted and prefer to keep myself to myself. I am a much more confident person outside work. I only work part time now after having DC and this has made me a much happier person.

I have recently moved into my own office and this has really exaggerated how quiet I am. I would quite happily just sit and do my work all day and not engage with colleagues but I am very aware of me doing this. Colleagues have commented that they don’t even realise I’m in and I need to get out and chat more. This pressure makes me feel anxious. I very rarely if ever approach another office to have a general chat, only if it’s a specific work question.

I don’t put myself out there at work, find it hard to speak up in meetings and shy away from opportunities if it means more interaction etc.

I am starting to dread going in the office. Worried that people will judge and think I’m too quiet. When I shared an office, at least I didn’t feel like a complete loner all day.

Anyone else feel like this?

OP’s posts: |
Custardcream67 Tue 06-Oct-20 21:45:12

I feel like people want me to be what is just so completely unnatural to me. I am never going to be someone who speaks loudly on the phone or sings/whistles in the corridor. I am just quiet by nature and this is never going to change, all I can do is make baby steps and small improvements.

OP’s posts: |
AWiseWomanOnceSaidFuckThisShit Wed 07-Oct-20 08:23:24

Bumping for you... also watching with interest!

KetoPenguin Wed 07-Oct-20 08:37:58

Do you really need to "network" and put yourself out there at work? Or are people maybe trying to be friendly by suggesting you come out and chat but wouldn't actually mind if you didn't. The majority of people do enjoy some social interaction in their day so it may just be that they think you might be lonely. What would happen if you did just stay in your office and work? If it's not going to lead to any real negative consequences then maybe the enjoyment you get from working in peace is worth some small lack of advancement in your company.

Custardcream67 Wed 07-Oct-20 09:30:43

I guess networking is required a little in my job to get stuff done but mainly my work is office based because I drive it to be that way. I could put myself out there and get involved in more interactive work and that would be seen favourably with management. My annual reviews are always along the lines of improving my personal brand and being seen more - I guess that if I’m not vocal about what I’m going, it is assumed I’m not doing much when In fact I just do it all quietly.

OP’s posts: |
Whym Wed 07-Oct-20 22:52:39

Hi CS, I can relate to all you say. Before Covid I was stuck in a big office with the majority of them loud and mouthy. Now working from home I’m soo much happier and dread the day it all changes.
When in the office I was probably one of the quietest, there were two others and they felt just like me. I did make a few attempts to join in but to be honest their jobs were not like mine, so they could chat amongst themselves more. Being quiet doesn’t get you anywhere...certainly not where I work but it’s personality so I no longer let it worry me.
I do have a few work colleagues who I get along with so I talk to them instead.

jogalong Thu 08-Oct-20 02:31:44

I also am a shy/ quiet person and when I was younger I hated myself for being that way. I was in a job once where the quietest person had a very senior position and I really admired her. She was clever, confident, gentle, professional and she became the person I hoped to be working the same shift with. I would feel under no pressure if i just wanted to work and not communicate much. She made me feel so comfortable. So many people had huge respect for her in our workplace even though she was really shy.
I realised some people with big personalities are not always as confident as you might think they are and can be painful at times. Just be yourself and be confident in yourself. Believe me people will admire you more for that. And a smile so others are reassured that your content in your own way!!

Custardcream67 Sat 10-Oct-20 22:23:53

Thanks everyone. You are probably right jogalong. The people I work with are definatly not nasty people. Most I work with directly seem decent kind people on the most part. They probably just assume I’m lonely. I would always appreciate people coming for a chat if they feel genuinely concerned. I don’t like colleagues comments about me being “too quiet”. That comment in itself just makes me feel inadequate.

OP’s posts: |
dangerrabbit Sat 10-Oct-20 22:26:10

Can you work from home at all in your role? Just come in one or two days per week to show your face and work-socialise?

Custardcream67 Sat 10-Oct-20 22:42:33

I wish I was allowed to work from home! We did during lockdown but now we’re told we have to be back in.

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