By Shiri Marwaha
“I’m the excitable introvert,” said Jacqueline Shaulis, Founder, AWESOME (Amazing Works of Expression, Serving Others with Maximum Enjoyment) Enterprises LLC, Creator Mistress of Her Domain series who grew up an introvert with big dreams. She now encourages women of color to overcome this challenge.
“I work with introverted women of color to get seen, heard and respected â€” by embracing their [inner] AWESOME,” said Shaulis.
This Texas native grew up a curious child and aspired to make it as a New York Times bestselling author despite being an introvert. Shaulis is the author of over two dozen books and her book “Embrace Your Inner Awesome” has made it as Amazon’s bestseller.
Shaulis broke the narrative that existed about the stereotype limits to an introvert, “I was told that introverts can or can’t do, but that didn’t feel true [to me].”
After breaking the norm, she learned to say “yes” to her vision of herself and proceeded to start a foundation called “Your Awesome.” The foundation encourages women of color and introverts to embrace their awesomeness and break boundaries.
Shaulis as a public speaker encourages, inspires and motivates women of color to achieve their best in life.
Talking about her career as a public speaker despite being an introvert, Shaulis said it is not uncommon for introverts to succeed and referred to celebrities in various fields like Barack Obama, Naomi Osaka, Beyonce, Stacey Abrams, Viola Davis who have successfully navigated introversion.
According to Shaulis, leaning into introversion is the key. “It is what allows them to show up powerfully in those ways without having to sacrifice their introversion.”
She describes introverts as internal processors, “We’re taking in all of the stimulation. So, we’re hearing what you’re saying, your body language, the environment, we’re processing all of these things simultaneously. And because we were depleted by our brain, going into overdrive with all of this, we then must step away from that stimulation, to process what’s happening.”
According to Shaulis, when you understand that it’s not shyness or quietness, it’s just you taking in all of the stimulation and then needing time to inwardly process it then it makes perfect sense why someone would excel in these different areas.
Giving an example of BeyoncÃ© Giselle Knowles-Carter, American singer and actress, Shaulis said that many of the greatest hits that she’s written and created, came from that space of introversion. It was her working through and having silence to write out something to empower herself that enabled her to write songs like Bootylicious and Single Ladies.
The virtual shift during the Covid-19 pandemic has helped introverts thrive but now that life is going back to in-person Shaulis said, introverts need to find and create those spaces.
“For using our opportunities, or what I call letting yourself shine, and not shying away from it. “You’re an introvert and also, you can shine,” said Shaulis.
The foundation calls for embracing your AWESOME, Shaulis described it as “a triad of thingsâ€” It starts with your amazing works of expression,” Shaulis said. These are all the ways that you show up in the world as a mother, daughter, friend etc.
The second piece is serving others and recognizing that life is a lesson that everyone learns for themselves to help them grow and expand.
The final piece according to Shaulis is maximizing enjoyment, the facet that women struggle with because they are indoctrinated into putting everyone else’s needs first. She encourages introverts to find spaces to enjoy themselves.
According to Shaulis, “To embrace your AWESOME, you need to bring all of them together, and you need to honor all of them.”
This helps people recognize who they are and what they bring along is important.
“But so is you showing up as you are, we can’t see you if you don’t show up,” said Shaulis.