At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled "quiet," it is to introverts that we owe many of the great contributions to society--from van Gogh’s sunflowers to the invention of the personal computer.
Passionately argued, impressively researched, and filled with indelible stories of real people, Quiet shows how dramatically we undervalue introverts, and how much we lose in doing so. Taking the reader on a journey from Dale Carnegie’s birthplace to Harvard Business School, from a Tony Robbins seminar to an evangelical megachurch, Susan Cain charts the rise of the Extrovert Ideal in the 20th century and explores its far-reaching effects. She talks to Asian-American students who feel alienated from the brash, backslapping atmosphere of American schools. She questions the dominant values of American business culture, where forced collaboration can stand in the way of innovation, and where the leadership potential of introverts is often overlooked. And she draws on cutting-edge research in psychology and neuroscience to reveal the surprising differences between extroverts and introverts.
Perhaps most inspiring, she introduces us to successful introverts--from a witty, high-octane public speaker who recharges in solitude after his talks, to a record-breaking salesman who quietly taps into the power of questions. Finally, she offers invaluable advice on everything from how to better negotiate differences in introvert-extrovert relationships to how to empower an introverted child to when it makes sense to be a "pretend extrovert."
This extraordinary book has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how introverts see themselves.
©2012 Susan Cain (P)2012 Random House
"An intriguing and potentially life-altering examination of the human psyche that is sure to benefit both introverts and extroverts alike." (Kirkus)
"Cain gives excellent portraits of a number of introverts and shatters misconceptions. Cain consistently holds the reader’s interest by presenting individual profiles, looking at places dominated by extroverts (Harvard Business School) and introverts (a West Coast retreat center), and reporting on the latest studies. Her diligence, research, and passion for this important topic has richly paid off.-" (Publishers Weekly)
"An intelligent and often surprising look at what makes us who we are." (Booklist)
Lending legitimacy to the introvert way of being as a natural part of the spectrum is something valuable to each of us, our teachers, partners, friends and families. Although valued historically and even now for its cultural and scientific benefits, our culture has superficially derided introversion
to the detriment of all and the unnecessary suffering of many.
This book was recommended to me along time ago. It was very thought-provoking made me think a lot about my own children and their personalities. I realize I need to relax and let them be there selves. Because I listen though I was confused as to what type of person I am I think a mixture of both. I wish I would've read this book years ago would help me to understand different types of personalities including my relationship with my own husband. Although it did feel like at some points that extrovert is bad introvert is good, but maybe that's how introverts feel every day in the mainstream world. Something to think about.
This book helped me understand after 50+ years on the planet why I prefer my own company most of the time.
This is a must read for every parent.
I am a self proclaimed introvert. I enjoy my alone time and find self in my writing. But many whom I work with find it difficult to swallow that I am introverted. This book helped me understand my self a bit more when I describes many introverts can be publicly extroverts and choose to go home and enjoy alone time. I spend several minutes in the morning before work pumping my self up, telling my self that the sooner I get started the sooner I can go home. Once home I immediately change get my self some tea and fall in to a relaxing chair with my love and our 3 dogs. This to me is heaven. I have recommended this book to most I know because it is a true reflection of people and can explain the many why's we have about ourselves and others!
At the moment, it's top of the list.
Susan Cain helps me better understand myself, an introvert, and to better understand those around me who are extraverted. (Two for the price of one!)
I have a background in social science, with some psychology and her writing rings true. It is based on research, which she then shapes into a very readable narrative. She helped me understand the foundational reasons behind why some of us tend to be extraverted while others are more introverted, how those reasons manifest themselves in our personalities, and ways of interacting with each other that helps those interactions go smoother. Although I already have some knowledge of the topic, I learned a lot.
While it is based on current scientific knowledge and theories of our personality types, she keeps it grounded in the practical.
As an introvert with a several decades of exposure to life's experiences, I don't have too many extreme reactions anymore. :) I will say that, as a result of this book, I decided to "be myself" more frequently to accomodate my preferences and better manage my energy. Susan Cain explains that it's not simply interaction with others that introverts find exhausting, it's over-stimulation. Now I know why cities, conferences, or expos tire me. So, when I'm in stimulating environments I Iook for quiet times to chill by stepping outside for a moment, by letting others chatter on without feeling the need to mirror their ebullience, or by simply finding a quiet spot to observe for a while. Thanks Susan.
Whichever you are, introverted or extraverted, I think you'll understand yourself and those around you better than you do now. She gives clear advice for living with spouses, children, siblings, co-workers, and so on.
I strongly recommend this book.
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