To break into the banking business, you need to be a skilled networker. When you meet an important person in a business suit, you need to know exactly how to charm them in order to get to the level of acquaintanceship where it would be totally normal to shoot them a quick email asking for a favor somewhere down the line. These networking skills aren't only useful in the banking world, of course; to become a great actor, you need to be willing to put yourself into the spotlight again and again to land a part; to become a powerful member at the firm, you need to be equipped to deal with constant contact with clients and others in connection with your case, keeping your phone on at full volume at all times.
For introverts, those with social anxiety and those who just don't love working in the company of others, those jobs most likely seem like a nightmare. Anyone who prefers solitude would likely struggle in a job that relies so heavily on relentless human contact. Thankfully, however, those demanding positions are not the only jobs available to us; there actually exist many careers that provide another path to success without stressful human interactions as a prerequisite.
Not wanting to talk to others on a daily basis is not a strange or unusual preference. Social anxiety can be all-encompassing at times; it leaves one gasping for breath behind a corner, trying to dry one’s armpits in the company hand dryer or unable to sleep the night before a big presentation. For people who want to stress less about the social stuff, it makes sense to try for a job that doesn’t require a lot of interaction with others. After all, the more we stress, the earlier we die. So, if human interaction causes you stress, don’t subject yourself to it for the rest of your life. Instead, find a job that is better suited to your needs.
What job is best for introverts? Check out this list to see if any of these options tickle your fancy.
Salary: $68,488/yr (ZipRecruiter)
One perk of being a freelance writer is that you almost never have to meet with the people who employ you. This job is absolutely perfect for people with social anxiety, because it is so solitary that you practically never need to go outside; you can sleep in until noon every day, as long as you make your deadlines, and if you don’t feel up to dealing with other people, you simply don't have to.
Salary: $73,071/yr (PayScale)
Similar to freelance writing, app development, if you go it alone, doesn’t require much time spent in the presence of others. You must meet with clients to discuss products, but after that, it’s up to you to translate their concepts into code, a job which requires a lot of serious alone time with your thoughts.
Salary: $62,280/yr (ZipRecruiter)
A translator's job is to ensure that their translations of spoken or written text retain the original intentions of the author. This job is great for people who would prefer to avoid human contact, because most of the work consists of either reading or listening, and while translators can be used by individuals or companies, the likelihood is that you'll spend most of your time lost in texts.
Salary: $67,963/yr (Salary.com)
A botanist is a type of scientist that deals with plants. This job is more important now than ever, since botanists' findings are integral in fighting against climate change, and the only social activity it requires is presenting on your research.
Salary: $65,176/yr (Salary.com)
A videographer works almost completely alone. Like a freelance writer, they are hired by clients, and while creating a film, they act as director, camera operator and editor. It’s certainly a solitary pursuit, and if you get good at it, it can be very lucrative.
Salary: $39,520/yr (ZipRecruiter)
An anthropologist studies social trends over time, looking at traditions in different cultures and drawing conclusions about humanity as a whole. Essentially, this means a lot of reading, a lot of writing and a lot of observation — all skills that tend to come easily to introverts. The only thing that might dissuade you from signing up for this job on the spot is that you usually need either a master’s degree or doctorate.
Salary: $47,600/yr (VeryWellMind)
Although being a counselor by definition means interacting with humans on a daily basis, this job is well suited to introverts’ skills — introverts tend to make deep connections with individuals and may feel lost in a group setting but are adept at listening to their friends and maintaining intense friendships. Those skills translate extremely well to the counselor’s office, wherein one must provide counsel for clients in a quiet, enclosed and safe space.
Salary: $43,832/yr (ZipRecruiter)
As a jewelry designer, you need to have an eye for the finer things, and it would be useful to network in order to find vendors who are willing to sell your work, but those things are all just barriers to entry. As soon as you have the materials necessary to start making your craft, you’ll be left alone to your pliers and snips.
Salary: $48,405/yr (Indeed)
As counterintuitive as it sounds, being a social media manager is perfect for introverts. Posting to social media is one of many areas in which an introvert's heightened social awareness comes in handy. Also, you can do most of it on your phone, and you don’t have to talk to anyone. So there’s that.
Salary: $41,231/yr (ZipRecruiter)
To become an auto mechanic, you just need a passion for cars and a willingness to smell like gasoline for the rest of your earthly life. Most people who head to the auto mechanic have no clue what’s wrong with their vehicle, so it usually doesn’t take a lot of interaction to get your client to sit in the waiting room while you put your problem-solving hat on and get your elbows greasy.
Salary: $62,126/yr (Payscale)
For those who can’t keep up with the fast-paced lifestyle of an app developer, perhaps the more laid-back environment of computer programming would be a better fit. It requires the same type of expertise in coding languages, but, of course, the language is different, and you won’t have a client breathing down your neck all the time.