Hi Beth - I came across your website while ruminating on a quiet Sunday morning about my life and work. Wow, I feel like the sun just burst through! I've always thought my inability to adopt the American business persona was down to my different professional experiences.
I moved to the US about 10 years ago (from the UK) and even though I have made progress in my professional life, there is more out there I want to do. The problem is I am a true introvert (having just ticked all your boxes). I've looked at all my colleagues around me who have climbed the Corp ladder and without exception they are all driven, vocal, self possessed, egoists (mostly men, but women who have donned that same mantra). Don't get me wrong, it's not that I can't adopt that behavior but I've reached a point in my life, where I don't want to work that hard becoming something I'm not.
So, I'm thinking of branching out into the independent/contracting world - which is pretty scary, because it's filled to the brim with the A type personalities I've described above.
I'd be really interested in your thoughts on this and what strengths I could bring to bear that will help me navigate this challenging field.
Thank you so much for your illuminating website - I really feel I've found a home!!