Harness the power of belonging and embrace introverted perspectives.

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Show Notes

Do you struggle to belong or feel like you have to pretend to be something you’re not to try and fit in?

Join us on this episode as father and son duo, David and Joshua Boroughs, team up with host David Hall to explore the power of belonging for introverts. Throughout the episode, we discuss David’s book “The Extrovert’s Guide to Elevating Introverted Leaders in the Workplace” and their co-authored fiction book, “Anxiety High Volume 1: There is Nothing Wrong with You!”, about an introverted teen navigating high school situations. The conversation centers on embracing introversion, fostering a culture of authenticity and thriving for introverts in school and the workplace.

You’ll learn how the guests embraced their strengths and needs as introverts, the value of understanding introverted perspectives, and tips for creating inclusive environments in school and the workplace.

Key takeaways include the importance of creating a workplace culture where introverts are valued, and strategies for embracing introverted strengths.

Tune in to gain invaluable insights that will empower you to embrace introversion, champion cultural change, and create an inclusive environment where everyone feels they belong.  Join us, embrace introversion, belong, and be strong.

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David and Joshua Boroughs are a father-son writing team from Houston, Texas. David is the author of The Extrovert’s Guide to Elevating Introverted Leaders in the Workplace. He is a retired professional engineer and corporate leader now focusing on his family while pursuing his passion as an author and artist. Joshua is a high school student and Anxiety High Volume 1: There is Nothing Wrong with You! is his first book. He is a typical teenager who spends his spare time with his friends, playing video games, running, and now writing. Both David and Joshua are introverts with a desire to help others learn how to be authentically happy and successful, while simultaneously championing cultural change so people of all personality types feel like they belong.

Get the Books:

The Extrovert’s Guide to Elevating Introverted Leaders in the Workplace  – David Boroughs

Anxiety High Volume 1: There is Nothing Wrong with You! – David and Joshua Boroughs

Connect with David Boroughs:


– – –

Contact the Host of the Quiet and Strong Podcast:

David Hall

Author, Speaker, Educator, Podcaster

david [at] quietandstrong.com

Take the FREE Personality Assessment:

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Follow David on your favorite social platform:

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Get David’s book:
Minding Your Time: Time Management, Productivity, and Success, Especially for Introverts

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Time-stamped Overview

00:00 David and Joshua Burrows promote introversion through their work. David is an author and artist, while Joshua is a high school student and author. Both are introverts aiming to inspire and help others.

06:09 Book chronicles career, fights introvert bias in leadership.

08:34 Personality type doesn’t determine leadership ability. Leaders should create an authentic culture.

13:48 Deep thinker, strength and weakness in career, struggles to let go in retirement.

14:57 Careful planning and worrying about copyrights while writing a book.

21:00 Retired author plans books, teen story with art.

24:39 Acceptance of introversion in personal and professional life.

27:14 Volume 1 sets up more volumes with different storyline. Volume 2: “You’re Not Alone,” focuses on a character’s struggle without family support.

31:04 Similar experience in book, struggled to participate in class discussions affecting grades.

34:32 Good leaders prep and provide post-meeting processing time for all.

39:02 Effort needed to raise awareness and change workplace culture. Optimistic about future progress.

40:46 Facebook tool for workplace, created Quiet Leadership group, gained 3,000 members in months, CEO support for diversity and inclusion conversation.

45:10 Thank you for joining. Connect at david@quietstrong.com, visit kawaiandstrong.com for blog and personality assessment.

Key Takeaways from this Episode

– Creating a workplace culture where individuals feel comfortable discussing their personality types is crucial for introverts to thrive.

– Leaders should raise awareness and facilitate open dialogue about personality types in the workplace.

– Tailored mentorship for introverts can help them understand their role within the company.

– Leveraging technology, such as workplace platforms, can facilitate conversations between introverts and extroverts.

– Understanding and embracing introversion from a young age is essential for individuals to embrace their strengths and differences.

– Dispelling myths about introverts, including debunking the assumptions that introverts are always shy and cannot be leaders or public speakers.

– The book “The Expert’s Guide to Elevating Introverted Leaders in the Workplace” and “Anxiety High Volume 1: There’s Nothing Wrong With You” aim to champion cultural change so that people of all personality types feel like they belong.

– The importance of providing support, understanding emotions, and accommodating both introverts and extroverts in leadership and work environments.

– The value of self-acceptance and the need for deep relationships for introverts.

Podcast Transcript

David Hall [00:00:00]:

Do you each have a myth about introversion that you wanna bust today?

Joshua Boroughs [00:00:04]:

I guess mine, like I brought up earlier, is that all insurance are, like, super shy. So, like, some introverts are perfectly good with public speaking. Like in our book, Sam would be a good example. She can she’s an introvert, but she can do her speech perfectly fine. I know Julian Dowles is the only one that struggles with it.

David Boroughs [00:00:22]:

I think mine I’m gonna go back to leadership. Right? It’s this myth that in order to be a leader, you have to be an extrovert or you have to act extroverted. For an introvert to lead, they have to put aside their introverted strengths, and they have to act extroverted.

David Hall [00:00:44]:

Hello, and welcome to episode 151 of the Quiet Strong podcast, especially for introverts. I’m your host, David Hall, And the creator of quietandstrong.com. This is a weekly podcast dedicated to understanding the strengths and needs of introverts. Introversion is not something to fix, but to be embraced. Normally, we will air each episode on a Monday. Be sure to subscribe on your favorite platform. Leave a review. That would mean a lot to me.

David Hall [00:01:09]:

Tell a friend about the podcast. Help get the word out there that introversion is a beautiful thing. David and Joshua Burrows are father son writing team from Houston, Texas. David is the author of The Extrovert’s Guide to elevating introverted leaders in the workplace. He is a retired professional engineer and corporate leader, now focusing on his family while pursuing his passion as author and artist. Joshua is a high school student and Anxiety High Volume 1, There is Nothing Wrong With You is his 1st book. He’s a typical teenager who spends his spare time with friends, playing video games, running, and now writing. David and Joshua are introverts with the desire to help others learn how to be authentically happy and successful while at the same time championing cultural change.

David Hall [00:02:01]:

So people of all personality types feel like they belong. All right. Welcome to the Quiet and Strong Podcast, David and Joshua.

David Boroughs [00:02:11]:

Thanks, Dave. We, I’m happy to be here.

Joshua Boroughs [00:02:13]:

Yeah. I’m happy to be here.

David Hall [00:02:15]:

Awesome. And we’re going to get into into a book that you’ve written together. And that’s very exciting Along the lines of introversion and embracing your introversion and and as part of the title, there’s nothing wrong with you. So we’re gonna get into that. But before we do that, David, let’s just hear a little bit more about your story. You know, I definitely you’re an introvert champion. I’ve being connected with you on LinkedIn for a little while. So tell us about your journey and discovering your introversion and then becoming a champion for other introverts.

David Boroughs [00:02:49]:

Sure. I you know, probably like a lot of people on your show are a lot of introverts. When I grew up, you know, we didn’t talk about introversion, extroversion, personality type. I had no clue what it was. I’d never heard of Carl Jung. I’d never really heard of Myers Briggs or any of that before. And, in fact, I didn’t really really yet understand know about any of it or understand any of it until I actually started working in corporate America. So up until that time, I was kind of listen blissfully being my quiet self, you know, when I was able to be authentic and and things were working out well.

David Boroughs [00:03:24]:

You know? High school went great. Of course, I did live in a very small, remote place, we’d probably help from an introversion perspective. Lived on a small farm, spent a lot of time by myself, which was cool. So I was alone a lot, but, from my perspective, I would never enrollee. And it was kind of that idyllic, you know, setting from my perspective growing up in in in rural America. And getting into college. College went fine, you know, did well. When I got into, corporate America as an engineer, things were also it started out well.

David Boroughs [00:03:56]:

I thought things were going great. I was really focused on my customers do you know, doing my job as an engineer, learning what I can learn. And I love being an engineer. I love the technical details of it. I love really focusing on my customers and helping helping them out. And, then one day, I had my you know, I was talking to my supervisor trying to figure out, you know, why I wasn’t getting promoted. And, you know, he we had this discussion. And what I realized during that discussion was he had this expectation that I changed my personality from this quiet, reserved, you know, think before I speak, contemplative person to more of an outgoing, outspoken person, and his expectation was I was going to make that change.

David Boroughs [00:04:40]:

And I really hadn’t and it was the first time where I felt like there was something wrong with my personality just because, you know, of of who I was. A little bit later, I got the chance to do this Myers Briggs assessment. That’s when I learned I was introverted. When I went through the assessment, that all felt fine. I felt like an introvert, and I felt cool with it. Didn’t really have a problem with it. But I’d started down this journey of kind of trying to figure out who I was as an introvert or and how I fit in in the in the corporate world is an advert and I spent a long time trying to fix myself. It was kind of that that that thing where you’re you’re told there’s something wrong with you and you kind of accept it and believe it.

David Boroughs [00:05:25]:

And it took much of my 30 year career to kind of figure out that there was nothing wrong with me. I was perfectly fine as the introvert I was. In fact, I wasn’t really going to thrive unless I embrace that introversion. So, I wrote, when I retired, I wrote a book about my my time within corporate America as an introvert and, you know, instead of writing a book from 1 introvert to another introvert and telling introverts how to cope in corporate America. I decided that message really needed to be different. It needed to be an introvert sending a message to the extrovert in corporate America. And so, I wrote the book and I titled it The Extrovert’s Guide to Elevating Introverted Leaders in the Workplace. You know, it’s kind of the first thing I did after I retire.

David Boroughs [00:06:09]:

I really dove into writing this book. And it kind of chronicles my life and my career, and it’s really focused on helping bust the myth that introverts can’t lead. And and the epiphany I had later in my career was that I could work on myself and I could be the best introvert in the world. I could be a top performer, but I was still fighting this bias that exists within corporate America that as an introvert, I was really never gonna be accepted in the ranks of leadership. In the epiphany was, hey, you know, unless the people in power know there’s a problem, they understand how big the problem is, they’re willing to change it. Personality type bias and discrimination within the workplace isn’t gonna change. Right? And so that was kind of my mantra moving into writing this look, what what can I do to kind of move the needle, level the playing field, and really help the people in power see that there’s a business case for change? There’s a need for change. It’s the right thing to do.

David Boroughs [00:07:12]:

And, you know, get as many people on board with that message as possible.

David Hall [00:07:17]:

Yeah. That’s amazing. So we think before we speak. And it’s it’s a gift because we’re deep thinkers, you know, a lot of great things come from that. But in the scenario you described, even if you want to change that, you couldn’t, you know, and you wouldn’t want to change it because it’s part of what makes us great. And I love that, that you’re taking the approach of, you know, we really have to have more conversations around this, that it’s not going to change, but we shouldn’t want to change it because it’s a good thing. At the same time, we need extroverts too. We need introverts and we need understanding that goes along with that.

David Boroughs [00:07:54]:

Yeah. And I’m a total believer that there’s if you’re an extrovert, there’s nothing wrong with you. If you’re an introvert and nothing wrong with you, no matter where you are on that personality time spectrum, you’re normal. And we have to come to, we often come to the common belief and agreement that that we’re all normal. And we’re normal being our authentic selves, not necessarily fitting in as a stereotype.

David Hall [00:08:18]:

Yeah. So let’s just talk just a little bit about your book. I know we’re going to talk about the the book that you and Joshua have written, but let’s just talk about this book really quickly. So what makes a great leader? And why is how an introvert approaches leadership may be different from an extrovert’s approach.

David Boroughs [00:08:34]:

Maybe the flip that around on you. What I would what I’ll say first is one one thing that absolutely doesn’t make a good rate leader’s personality type. So you can be an extrovert and be a great leader. You can be an extrovert and be a terrible leader. You can be an introvert and be a great leader or you can be an introvert and be a terrible leader. So, I believe that personality type has nothing to do with how good or bad a a leader you are, even though our culture kind of teaches us something different than that. In my experience, the people I had great extroverted leaders. I had great introverted leaders while I was working and the people who really I felt were great leaders were the ones that created a culture where I could really be authentic, where I could leverage my strengths as an introvert and I could be my authentic self.

David Boroughs [00:09:19]:

And when I when that happened, I was more productive. I did a better job. Things went went better for me and and and for the business. And I think that, you know, it it doesn’t have to be more any more complicated than that, really. It’s really about creating a culture where no matter who you are as a leader, you you let you let people leverage their strengths, and those strengths don’t necessarily fit a stereotype. They’re not always the same, and they’re mostly person to person dependent. So, that’s what I think it takes to be a great leader.

David Hall [00:09:54]:

Okay. And then along with this, what you’re talking about within the culture, you do a lot of work with belonging. So tell us a little bit about what belonging is and why our personalities are part of this an important part of this conversation.

David Boroughs [00:10:08]:

Yeah. So. You know, we talk within a corporate America, diversity, equity and inclusion are big messages, right? And in the book and writing articles a lot about belonging because I really believe, as introverts, belonging is really important. So you can as a leader, you can create a diverse workforce made up of a lot of different people that that represent a lot of dimensions of diversity. And you can even have the goal of including everybody, right, making sure that everybody contributes. But depending on your approach. You can do it and still do that in a way where people don’t feel like they belong. So you can have an environment that’s diverse and inclusive, But you still have a large percentage of your population or your employees that don’t feel like they even belong there.

David Boroughs [00:10:57]:

And and the reason is is because you’re often trying to get them to fit a stereotype, trying to get them to fit in. Fitting in is different from belonging. In order to fit in, you really have to change who you are to to meet an expected norm or to meet a stereotype. And with belonging, all you really have to do is be your authentic self. So leaders who can really leverage that perspective and create an environment where people can be authentic, where they can leverage their strengths, where they’re celebrated for leveraging their things are typically places where you’re gonna find more joy in the workplace. People are gonna be more productive. And, especially, as introverts, when you can find that place where you can feel like you belong as yourself, you know, it’s a great thing.

David Hall [00:11:40]:

Absolutely. All right. So that’s a quick summary of your 1st book. I’ve been reading it and very much enjoying it. So let’s get into the 2nd one that you co wrote with Joshua. So Joshua, tell us a little bit about yourself and, you know, so far How you’ve embraced your introversion?

Joshua Boroughs [00:11:59]:

So, originally, I thought that I wasn’t an introvert because there are a lot of stereotypes that introverts just have, like, no social skills whatsoever, and I’d like to think that I’m at least somewhat decent in social situations. And one day, I got into a debate with my dad on the way home from school. And I went all the way home and even until into the living room, and we decided to take a couple personality quizzes. And on every single personality quiz that I took, it gave me the results that I was in the majority percent introverted, and then my dad told me that it’s on a spectrum. So there’s no, like and then you don’t have to be completely accurate or completely introverted. You can be, like, in the middle. So we think that I’m probably, like, on slightly on the injured side, but I’m not, like, completely as far as I thought you would have to be if you were an injured. Now in society today, I I haven’t seen that much, like, oppression, I guess.

Joshua Boroughs [00:13:04]:

Maybe I’ve been sheltered, but I feel like introverts get a decent chance, so I’ve I’ve just been embracing it whenever it comes up.

David Hall [00:13:15]:

Okay. Yeah. Definitely, you’re not gonna get away with that conversation having your dad, I’m sure. And, You know, it’s it’s it’s a beautiful thing. There are a lot of misconceptions, you know, that every introvert is shy. Some are shy. But, you know, I definitely believe that if you understand who you are, you can overcome shyness, if that’s something that you want to do. And, you know, there’s a lot of great things that come from it.

David Hall [00:13:42]:

So let’s talk a little bit about that. David, what’s the strength that you have because you’re an introvert?

David Boroughs [00:13:48]:

One of the things that, for me, it’s really this ability to kind of think through scenarios. So, it’s one of those things where it’s probably a strength and a weakness at the same time, but I’m a deep thinker. I really think through all the scenarios. And for the long time, my career as an engineer, I was a a a high reliability safety system engineer, so one of my job was to think through all the bad things that could possibly happen and in making sure they never happen. So that skill that I had was very suited for that. Now that I’m retired, it’s a it’s a bit of a mixed bag, right, because you don’t wanna be second you don’t wanna be creating scenarios and multiple plans for everything you do on a day to day basis or overthinking things. So it’s definitely been a strength for me, historically, within my career. Now that I’m retired, I’m finding a bit I’m struggling a bit to kind of let go of it because I need to let go of it.

David Boroughs [00:14:39]:

But, I would think, to me, that’s one of the things that I’ve really found as as a strength, that ability to kinda think deeply and to think through all the specific scenarios that could exist.

David Hall [00:14:51]:

Okay. And Are you finding ways to put that into now your retirement career?

David Boroughs [00:14:57]:

Oh, I mean, I think that if you think about writing a book too, it could be good or bad, right? So So, like, if you think about things like copyright, you you do a lot of planning. You go through you get the resources. You go through it and make sure everything’s put note and annotated. You make sure you you’ve gotten permissions. But at the same time, it’s easy to overthink it. Right? You can go through a lot of worst case scenario thinking and with copyrights that you don’t really can’t control because you until you get sued, you don’t know if if you met the met the standard or not. So that’s a scenario where it it helps because you’re thorough, but at the same time you tend to worry more about it than you probably should.

David Hall [00:15:35]:

Yeah. Yeah. Okay. Alright, Joshua. It’s your turn. Is there a strength that you know that you have because you’re an introvert?

Joshua Boroughs [00:15:42]:

I like to plan ahead, which helps me a lot with school. I like to get school done schoolwork done as early as possible. It helps me especially because I get sick a lot, which means that I have a lot of makeup work to do. So when I plan ahead, it helps make, like, the days coming back from when I missed school a lot easier to manage.

David Hall [00:16:02]:

Okay. And, so the next question I was gonna ask was need. So, like, that could be both, you know, like, your strength is planning, But you also might have a need to plan. Is there is there another need, Joshua, that you you know that you have because you’re an introvert?

David Boroughs [00:16:17]:

Oh, I like I

Joshua Boroughs [00:16:19]:

like just a lot of alone time sometimes. Like I don’t know, like, I can meet in social situations perfectly fine, but afterwards, I’ll wanna spend time by myself just doing, like, a quiet hobby.

David Hall [00:16:34]:

Yeah. Okay. And the needs question is next for you, David. Is there is there something that you realize, hey, this is a need I have as an introvert?

David Boroughs [00:16:44]:

Yeah. Maybe it goes back to belonging. Right? Because so a lot of people assume introverts don’t need to belong because we don’t like the the the the social gatherings. But I think the misnomer that many people have is belonging is important just as important to introverts. We just do it differently. Right? So it’s my core group, which is my family, for the most part, and a few close friends, I really need those people there with me. And if I don’t have them, I I I struggle. So, you know, that from that belonging perspective, I I really still need my my core group of of really deep relationships for me to feel like I’m, you know, 100%.

David Hall [00:17:25]:

Yeah, and I think a key word you said was deep. So we absolutely need relationships, But we need some deep connections. We think deeply and we want to have some deep conversations. You know, we want to have other other folks in our lives, too. But those deep relationships are important. And so it’s normal for introvert to have a smaller circle of deep relationships that are extremely important to them. And again, none of this is good or bad. It’s just it’s understanding that, Hey, this is what I need and it’s very normal.

David Hall [00:17:55]:

And then so we talk about on this show, we talk about strengths, needs, and then we try and bust a few myths. Do you each have a myth about introversion that you want to bust today?

Joshua Boroughs [00:18:05]:

I guess mine, like I brought up earlier, is that all insurance are, like, super shy. So, like, some introverts are perfectly good with public speaking. Like in our book, Sam would be a good example. She can she’s an introvert, but she can do her speech perfectly fine. And, actually, now is the only one that struggles with it.

David Hall [00:18:24]:


David Boroughs [00:18:26]:

Yeah. I think mine I’m gonna go back to leadership. Right? It’s it’s this myth that in order to be a leader, you have to be an extrovert or you have to act extroverted. For an for an introvert to lead, they have to act they have to put aside their introverted strengths and they have to act extroverted. And I think it’s it’s almost a miss misnomer to call it a myth because a myth is one of those things where some people believe it. A lot of people just know it’s just, you know, not not true. It’s almost a societal misconception, right, where where the majority of society still believes that if you’re introverted, you can’t be a leader. And and I’m all about breaking that bias and breaking that myth because it’s it’s doing us a disservice.

David Hall [00:19:09]:

Yeah. So introverts can be amazing public speakers. They could be amazing leaders. And to me, it’s like not a question of if, you know, click people say Or, you know, can an introvert be a great public speaker? Can an introvert be a great leader? And it’s like, no, it’s just the how could be different. How are they going to do that? And I had a different podcast today, and we just we really talked about that. You know, I enjoy public speaking, like Joshua is saying, but I know that I have to prepare a lot. I have to prepare ahead of time, and my extroverted friend or colleague might not need to prepare at all. They might just get up and give a winged speech and everybody loves it, but that’s not going to be me.

David Hall [00:19:57]:

You know, I’m going to need to prepare to give a good speech and then I might need some downtime after and I might need to plan how that’s going to work.

David Boroughs [00:20:06]:

Yeah, I absolutely agree. I would agree with that 100%.

David Hall [00:20:09]:

Yeah. So. All right. So we talked about David’s 1st book. Let’s get into the 2nd book. I thoroughly enjoyed it. You know, you wrote it together. Tell us a little bit about the book, Joshua.

Joshua Boroughs [00:20:22]:

So it’s about this kid in misinterpreting kid in high school named Niles, and he gets bullied by students and sometimes by one of his teachers because he is quiet and sometimes just doesn’t know what to say in situations, and the book follows 1 week of his school life as he prepares to give big speech at the end of the week to help his friend run for student council president and all the struggles that comes along with that.

David Hall [00:20:54]:

And, let’s see. The title is anxiety high volume one. There’s nothing wrong with you.

David Boroughs [00:21:00]:

I was going to say, you know, so one of the things when I retired, I had kind of this vision in my mind I was gonna write some books, and one of them was the the extrovert’s guide. That that was kind of the one I knew I was gonna write and I did first. But I I wanted to write these teen books. Right? And then and, initially, I thought they would just be graphic novels because I also do the artwork. And Joshua, you know, he loves graphic novels, so I thought it would be a great way to connect with with teens. And when we started writing it, it it kinda took a different form. Right? It became this cross between a novelette and a graphic novel where we have it’s more of a story, but at the same time, we still have the the the images in there to kinda help people relate the stories and kinda give people a a mental picture of what’s going on. So, you know, we sit down and and and kinda started brainstorming it and came up with the story, divided up, we had divided up the the different parts of the story.

David Boroughs [00:21:54]:

We wrote our parts, and then we came together and had to do a lot of editing work because, you know, sometimes when you write first, they don’t always hook hook up together. And, you know, just from my perspective as a dad, I’m sure there were times when when Josh, you know, he he thought it was probably more work than it needed to be. But as a dad, you know, it just made my year probably to have Josh there with me working on this labor of love that I had this vision in my mind about what it could be. And when I when we finished it, it was so much better because he was involved than it ever would have been if I would have tried to do it on my own because he has this perspective as a team that I lost, right? And I’m just so proud of the book. I think it’s just an awesome book.

David Hall [00:22:35]:

Yeah, yeah. I was able to read the whole thing and I loved it. So Josh, what made you decide or agree to writing Or cowriting a book with your dad.

Joshua Boroughs [00:22:47]:

So he proposed the idea to me at first, and I didn’t really want to. But originally, I thought this would be something good to put on my college applications. So I I tried it out. Originally, I thought, you know, I’m not gonna put that much effort into this. I’ll just do the bare minimum. But as it went on. I started to get, like, more and more involved because I wanted to put something that I could I wanted to make something that I could, like, proudly tell, like, my friends and the people at school about.

David Hall [00:23:20]:

Great. And you should be proud.

David Boroughs [00:23:22]:

And and I would I’m sorry. I was gonna say, and and it’s it’s more than just writing the book too because we did with the exception of the legal review, which we had all you do, we did all the work So we did all the artwork. We did all the configurations. So Josh yeah. Josh did most of the configuration work to convert it from, you know, like a word document into into the book format, the configuration on Amazon. So there’s a lot of work that we did together to to publish the book. So in addition to writing, it’s more of a writing and publishing That that, you know, it’s you know, it just, it was just an awesome experience. So

David Hall [00:23:58]:

That’s wonderful. So in the subtitle, There’s Nothing Wrong With You, Joshua, did you feel like there was something wrong with you at some point?

Joshua Boroughs [00:24:07]:

To be honest, no. That title doesn’t apply to me. It’s but Okay. It’s targeted towards other see, this specific book, I guess, is targeted towards other t it’s targeted towards teenagers who might think that there is something wrong with them because they’re introverted. And then it’s the first one in a series, so they’re all gonna have something, like, I guess, some, like, positive affirmation towards introvertors as, like, the subtitle. Just, like, telling them that they don’t need to be, like, worried because, like, there’s nothing wrong with them. They’re not alone in this. And yeah.

David Boroughs [00:24:39]:

I know that me as an introvert, I personally have a lot of feelings that, for a long time, those feelings were were real feelings. Right? They manifest themselves physically, and I thought that you know, I spent a lot of time trying to make those feelings go away, trying to make those feelings not be there. And when I finally accepted the fact that they were normal for me. Things got much better much you know, very quickly. So I I I I, as an adult, you know, used to be a teen a long time ago. I do actually do kinda resonate with the title very much so because even in corporate America, I felt like there was something wrong with me because, like I said earlier, a lot of my leaders kind of told me there was. And, you know, that’s a message that we wanna get out there is that regardless of where you find yourself on the personality type spectrum, whether you’re very introverted or very extroverted or somewhere in the middle, you know, there’s nothing wrong with you. You’re perfectly normal, and it’s perfectly okay to embrace who you are and kinda where you fall on the spectrum.

David Boroughs [00:25:40]:

And if you you’re introverted, doesn’t mean you can’t be student council president because you absolutely can. If you’re extroverted, you can, you know, do the do the same and and you you can do absolutely the same thing. Right? So it’s, you know, it’s it’s disconnecting this idea that if your, you know, your personality type is is connected with leadership, when in reality, all it has to do is all it has to do with is how you manage stimulation and how you recharge your your internal battery. And when we can all come to accept that, we’ll be be in a better place, I think.

David Hall [00:26:13]:

Yeah. For sure. And I I was definitely in the place where I thought something was wrong. You know? Why can’t I be more like that person? You know, why can’t I easily have conversations? You know, that kind of thing. Definitely it’s started for me in college. I got a degree in psychology. I got a ma a master’s in counseling. I was starting to figure out, But I was probably in my late thirties before I finally just understood, hey, not only is there nothing wrong with me, there’s very good things about me because I’m an introvert.

David Hall [00:26:49]:

You know, there’s very good, there’s, there’s some strengths. And I’m so happy To hear, Joshua, that you really are already on this journey and you don’t have to be in your thirties, forties, fifties, and figure out, oh, there’s something great. You’re already realizing that. And that’s that’s that’s what we really want to do is is start these conversations early. And, you know, these books are gonna help people do that.

David Boroughs [00:27:14]:

Yeah. I absolutely agree. And and that’s kinda why we wrote wrote this with volume 1 with the idea that we write these additional volumes and, you know, moving a different different, storyline. So the the second the second volume is tentatively tentatively titled, you know, You’re Not Alone. Right? So it it and we sub kind of frame it at the end of the book as we move into the to the 2nd title where we have a character that kind of feels like she’s alone in her struggles as an introvert. She’s not getting a lot of in our 1st book, the Niles gets a lot of help from his family and friends. You know, the 2nd book, we you know, Ruby, who’s the character in that book, will probably not get as much help from you know, she’ll she’ll struggle. She won’t have that family support, and she’ll have to look elsewhere and we’re in in in figure that out.

David Boroughs [00:27:59]:


David Hall [00:28:00]:

Okay. Is is Niall’s gonna return or that was just he was just in the first book?

David Boroughs [00:28:06]:

I think the characters all kinda continue to play a role so that characters you know, mister Cobb, I think you’re gonna see him again, probably. Know, we will have to do a lot of brainstorming to figure out. We haven’t written brainstormed the 2nd book. You definitely see Sam again. You’re gonna see, miss Sweeney and the counselor, and we’ll introduce some new characters as we go along. I think you’ll continue to see view the same characters. The format will definitely stay the same. So every book will cover a week in the life of a a a student, and it’ll focus on a different student each in each volume.

David Boroughs [00:28:37]:

But the other students will still be there kinda in the, in the, in the grander scheme of things, in the storyline.

David Hall [00:28:44]:

Yeah. That’s amazing. And again, the sooner we can help people figure out that we have unique gifts and they’re gifts and it’s not, there’s nothing wrong, the better. I had a guest on. She wasn’t a coach for introverts. She she helped her like with work life balance. She, you know, was was a life coach And she had a, but she was also an introvert. And she had a client that was around 80.

David Hall [00:29:13]:

And when she was working with her on challenges that she had, she realized this person doesn’t understand their introversion and that and that misunderstanding of introversion, as they look back, really had caused a lot of problems. And we definitely don’t want that. That’s why we’re doing this work. It’s so, you know, people can understand from the beginning, you know, Hey, you know what? I’m going to be thinking. I generally not all the time, but generally I think before I speak, you know, the extrovert’s probably gonna think out loud most of the time, And it’s just a different way and it’s not a good way or bad way, but it is, you know?

David Boroughs [00:29:53]:

And I think as, you know, you asked about leaders earlier. As a leader, what you have to do is you have to account for both, Right? So you can’t create create an environment where it’s it’s ideally suited for the extrovert or ideally suited for the introvert. You gotta do both. Right? And we have to do you know, that’s that’s investment you have to put into it. You have to do that work in order for you to get that balanced perspective and to get the best out of everybody.

David Hall [00:30:15]:

Yeah, and it’s work, but it’s worth it. You know, it’s worth it to get to know the people that are working for you and to understand their needs and when they’re going to need time to think. And that’s normal when they might be more comfortable in writing something. All of those things, it takes some time to get to know, you know, and we’re very nuanced as people, you know, none of us are exactly the same. And so it takes work to get to know people. But again, it’s worth it, you know, especially as a leader. Let’s just talk a little bit more about the characters in your book. So I think you mentioned there was a teacher.

David Hall [00:30:53]:

So what what do either of you, what, was there any experiences with teachers or is there things that you want teachers to know about personality types?

Joshua Boroughs [00:31:04]:

So I guess I actually have, like, the exact same situation that happened in Niles happened to me. So, basically, in the book, Niles doesn’t like history class because they have a lot of in class discussions. And I remember in my freshman year English class, we were having graded discussions about these books we are reading. And I was I had a lot of stuff that I wanted to add, but I thought that I just couldn’t like, I I thought there was no room in the conversation for me to add, so my my grades, whenever one of those came up, dropped. So I guess that was the 1st part of the book that I wrote. So I think that I pulled from that experience when I wrote that part of the book.

David Hall [00:31:46]:

Okay. And so what was your takeaway like? What was there things that you did to change? Was there actual conversations that happened with teachers?

Joshua Boroughs [00:31:59]:

Oh, yeah. I so my English teacher, I think, was more easily open to change than the teacher in the book was. So I just had a meeting with her, and we came up with pretty easy solution to my problem, which is just we made it so, like, she told the class that everyone has to, like, raise their hand before they talk, and that allowed me to get into the conversation a lot easier.

David Hall [00:32:27]:

Okay. And also in the book, it was, I think it was a history teacher, right? In the book, the character, you know, asks the teacher to provide the information ahead of time, right? And I know that’s key. When I got to college, I had trouble, and sometimes there was participation points. But I realized in order to be my best, I really did need to prepare for the conversation, you know, and and that’s something, you know, maybe maybe a friend could Have be more free and not have to prepare as much. But I realize for my part, I did need to prepare, and I did much better once I figured that out.

David Boroughs [00:33:10]:

And we in the book, we try to do that. And I think we try to do that. Right? We try to provide it’s it’s within the story, there are some lessons that can be learned. Right? So within the story, there is there is this idea that, you know, in order one one way an introvert can do better in in Socratic type discussions is to prepare ahead of time. Then we’ll do that. You need to know what the discussion’s about. But if you have the the points you wanna make kinda laid out, you can do it early. You can kinda get it in there.

David Boroughs [00:33:37]:

In that way, you know, interrupting is not is is not a is difficult a chore. So we we try to build those examples within the story. So as you read it, it’s it’s fiction, it’s entertainment, but at the same time, there’s some key things you can learn, I think.

David Hall [00:33:51]:

Yeah. And Joshua, your dad will tell you that that’s gonna apply to real life. You know, it’s like you’re going to have meetings and it’s going to be so much better if the leader of the meeting provides an agenda ahead of time and you can actually prepare because, you know, you’re going to want to have a voice in that meeting, but you might need to prepare or you might need to Find your space to get in like you’re talking about, just like you might have had a struggle in the past in class. Some people have that same struggle in the work setting where they want to say something, but they don’t feel like the space to get into it. And so these things that you’re learning and you’re also helping other people learn definitely apply to your work life. It’s, you know, a little ways down the road.

David Boroughs [00:34:32]:

I think really good really good leaders, you know, not only provide the agenda upfront, but they’re gonna provide some time after the meeting so people you need to think more, can process the information. So it’s one of those things where there’s a lot of lessons to be learned. We we we don’t do things the way we should in a lot of cases, especially when it comes to meetings. But, like I said, for a meeting to be to add as much value as it can, you gotta really plan for everybody on the spectrum and you gotta you gotta you know, if you have a preread, you still have to talk about the pre preread when you get to the meeting for the extroverts, you know, you can’t ignore talking about it because they’re not gonna get the benefit of just doing the preread. And then when you get to the end of meeting, you think you have the answer, you’ll be well suited if you give everybody some time to think about it because, you know, you might discover that, you know, you don’t have the optimal solution yet. You might be fine. You might have it, but giving everybody a little bit more time to process is also a good thing.

David Hall [00:35:28]:

Yeah. And making that normal, you know. For me, I’m going to try to express fully my opinions within the meeting, but it’s not going to always happen. I mean, my ideal is, you know, I say what I want to say in the meeting, but So often there might be things after that I might want to contribute, and we just need to make that normal, you know, that we might come up with some better things with some more thought. Yep. All right. One more character. There was a counselor in there that seemed to be helpful to both the students and the teachers.

David Hall [00:35:58]:

Do you want to talk about that? Like, Or it was there an actual counselor or just, you know, what role could could that play in in, in a student’s life or teacher’s life?

David Boroughs [00:36:08]:

I mean, maybe I’ll start. You know, we definitely want to normalize this idea that it’s okay to talk about your feelings. It’s okay to to get help. And in order for that to happen, we felt like it was really important to have somebody in that role within the book. And there are a few people that play that role, but having somebody like a counselor, the school counselor that actually understands personality type and can provide good advice was a good role model to provide in the book, and we felt like it was it was important. I know from my perspective, you know, therapy there you know, going to therapy helps me a lot. I’m not if not ashamed to say it. And having that person who understands psychology even understands, you know, personality type, and being able to really talk to them in a way that’s nonjudgmental has really been beneficial for me.

David Boroughs [00:36:54]:

But I think, you know, I think even at Joshua’s school, they have really good calendars and stuff. So I think it was something that, yeah, when we wrote it, we really wanted we really felt like it needed to be a a character that you needed to write in a way that encouraged people to seek help and to talk about their, their needs and their feelings.

David Hall [00:37:14]:

Okay. And this counselor also definitely brought some awareness to the teacher that the student was having a little trouble with. David, let’s translate that into the workplace. How can we bring and I know this is a lot of the work that you do how can we bring understanding into the workplace. What are what are just some key suggestions that you have?

David Boroughs [00:37:34]:

I think the first thing is, you know, we can’t be afraid to talk about personality type. Right? So I see so many so many introverts who are afraid to even bring it up that they’re introverted because they’re gonna be stereotyped, are they gonna be pigeonholed or put you know, or not getting opportunities they need need to. And I think that’s some mistake. Right? I think you you have to have a workplace where people are comfortable talking about it. So as a leader, you need to kinda create that create that dialogue. And and I see so many leaders who have been pushed by tailwinds, and they don’t really realize there’s a problem. So they didn’t don’t even know to ask the question. Right? They didn’t don’t even know to have the conversation.

David Boroughs [00:38:11]:

So, you know, if if you’re a leader, you know, having these conversations about and understanding kinda when people are their at their best, especially when it comes to personality type, understanding that if somebody is introverted, they you know, they they’ll benefit from having a preread. They’ll benefit from having alone time. You know, 1 on 1 conversations are probably better than group conversations for them. So it’s it’s understanding that perspective really makes it better for for the, for the employees and and the leaders per se. But it’s gonna take it takes awareness. Right? Because I think as introverts, we we think it should be obvious, But I think our our extroverted counterparts that are working in a system that kinda works for them, they may or may not even re realize it. It’s no fault to to theirs. It’s just you know, they’re just functioning and it’s working.

David Boroughs [00:39:02]:

And it you know, it’s gonna take some effort to kinda raise that awareness and, once again, get people to realize there’s a problem, get people to realize how big the problem is, and then be motivated and, you know, through through, you know sympathy is kind of the idea of you’re aware of it and then you’re motivated through compaction and then you get, you know, becoming empathetic to your fellow workers so you actually are willing to change the culture. I think all of that has to happen, and it’s much easier to talk about than it is to do it. But I’m confident over time. We’re we’re already moving in the right direction, but I’m confident over time we’ll get it there. And then maybe when Joshua gets into workforce in 5 to 10 years, it’ll be better, right? And when his kids get into the workforce, you know, in 20 or 30 years, it’ll be even better. So that’s my hope, at least. Yeah.

David Hall [00:39:48]:

So So what’s an example of how we bring awareness? What’s the kind of activity or something resource that you’ve seen used or you used within your company or with other You

David Boroughs [00:39:59]:

know, for a long time, there was no there were no, you know, there were mentor you can write about this in the book. You know, when I first started, there was there were mentors for leadership. There were mentors for technical skill sets, but there were no mentors for, you know, me as an introvert and learning how my personality meshed with the company and how I could, you know, benefit and what was expected me, though that mentor did not exist. Right? So we have to create these conversations within the workplace. And it can’t be, like, introverts talking to introverts. It’s gotta be people talking to people. You gotta have extroverts talking to introverts and introverts talking to experts and and Amber members in the in the mix, and you all have to be having these conversations. Where I worked, when I several years ago, we just come in we just introduced, Work Workplace.

David Boroughs [00:40:46]:

It’s a Facebook tool. It looks a lot like Facebook but within the workplace, and we started creating these groups. And I one day, I just decided to create this group called Quiet Leadership kind of based on the Susan Cain, book. And we started this conversation about, you know, here’s what it means to be an introvert within the company, and these are the things that I’m struggling with. And we went from 0 members to, like, 3,000 members within a couple months. It was like something that kinda took off like wildfire. And at the when I did that, I kinda did it in conjunction with the diversity and inclusion leadership within the company and even kinda got the CEO onboard with us doing it. So we had this backing of support to have this conversation and it it was something as simple as creating a platform where people could communicate they talk about something they’ve really never talked about before.

David Boroughs [00:41:39]:

And I think that’s important. Right? You gotta have that that safe place where you can have the conversation. And we use technology to do that, but there are other ways to do it as well.

David Hall [00:41:51]:

All right. And so, yeah, we have to keep having more conversations, whether it’s in the high school, in the workplace, you know, with parents. This has been a great conversation. Again, congratulations to you both fun writing a book together. I really enjoyed it. Is there anything else that you want to add? Either of you?

David Boroughs [00:42:13]:

I’d just kind of reiterate, as a parent, it’s one of those things where Christmas came early for me, right, this is this was just something that was really a lot of work, but at the same time, I got a lot of satisfaction from it. And, you know, working with Josh and having my 16 year will be willing to do something like this with me even though it may have been a little bit begrudgingly at first, really was is it’s something that, as a parent, I I’m super proud of, and and I know I benefited tremendously from it. So I’m gonna thank Josh for just being willing to to do something that a lot of 16 year olds would never do. So

David Hall [00:42:51]:

Alright. What’s next for you, Josh?

Joshua Boroughs [00:42:54]:

Well, in terms of writing or just in in general?

David Hall [00:42:59]:

Yeah. Both. Both. You’re still a high school student, correct?

David Boroughs [00:43:02]:


David Hall [00:43:03]:

Okay. So what what do you wanna do after high school?

Joshua Boroughs [00:43:08]:

After high school, I’m gonna go to co I currently plan on going to college to study to be a chemical engineer.

David Hall [00:43:16]:

Okay. Very cool. And I know you were both planning on writing More in this series of anxiety high. Right?

David Boroughs [00:43:24]:

Mhmm. Yeah. I mean, that’s the that’s the goal. We haven’t like I said, we haven’t really started. We’re still trying to market the The 1st book Yeah. To read it. But, yeah, I think it’s the first one turned out so well. I think that we that we need to.

David Boroughs [00:43:36]:

And then everybody who reads it, we get such positive feedback from that. I think that, I think when people start reading it and in sharing with others and and seeing how it can actually be a very beneficial book, I think, will will will definitely create the momentum and and get excited about writing the, the second one. Maybe a third one, maybe.

David Hall [00:43:59]:

Yeah. Sounds great. And where can people find out about your first Book, David, or also this book that you’ve written together?

David Boroughs [00:44:06]:

No. So, the 2 books, the titles are, once again, The Experts Guide to Elevating introverted leaders in the workplace and is subtitled embracing a culture of belonging. And then the book that me and Josh just wrote that’s that’s nonfiction. In the book that me and Josh just wrote is fiction for teens, and it’s called Anxiety High volume 1, There’s Nothing Wrong With You. Both books are available on Amazon. So you get Amazon .com. You can search by title, or you can search my my my name, David Burrows, and you can find them pretty easily. I’m on LinkedIn.

David Boroughs [00:44:35]:

I’m writing articles on LinkedIn all the time. You can you can contact me there as well. And then we have a website called introvertsandbelongingdot com, which you can go to and and connect it connects straight to LinkedIn and to Amazon. So if you wanna just go to introvertandmalawing.com, yeah, you can quickly link to either site.

David Hall [00:44:54]:

Awesome. And I’ll add that to the show notes. So thank you both. It was very nice to meet you both and it’s Just it’s awesome, the book that you put together together.

David Boroughs [00:45:05]:

Well, thanks for the opportunity. So we do appreciate it very much.

Joshua Boroughs [00:45:08]:

Yeah. Thanks for having us on.

David Hall [00:45:10]:

Thank you so much for joining me today. I look forward to further connecting with you. Reach out at david@quietandstrong.com Or check out the quietandstrong.com website, which includes blog posts and links to social media channels. Send me topics or guests you would like to see on the show. If you’re interested in getting to know yourself better, there’s now a free type finder personality assessment on the Quiet and Strong website. This free assessment will give you a brief report including the four letter Myers Briggs code, and you can also have the option of purchasing the full report if you’d like to learn more. I’ll add a link to the show notes. So many great things about being an introvert, and we need those to be understood.

David Hall [00:45:50]:

Get to know your introverted strengths And needs and be strong.

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