Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, by Susan Cain
My extroverted hubby gave me a book, and in his words, it celebrates me.
For probably forty years, I thought it was a bit of a character defect, that I (usually) prefer working alone to working with others. That I prefer listening to talking (unless it's about my children so don't get me started here...). I always thought it was my shyness, and with, as Sir Elton sings, a "handful of grease in her hair" it probably was, in my youth. But as I grow older I see it less as passivity and more as my overall goal to get to peacefulness. It's just my personality! And it's perfect.
In Quiet, author Susan Cain contends that introverts are important and that society undervalues them. They possess fabulous talents, qualities that are needed in damn near every circumstance, and possess a reservoir of untapped significance! Unfortunately, introverts need an environment where they can thrive, and this isn't easily created, away from home at least, in situations when the loudest and the pushiest reign. They can be overlooked or disregarded or just not recognized - especially at school or work. Think about it - when you find yourself among others in a meeting, the best ideas aren't necessarily being promoted because the only ideas being discussed are the ideas of the best talkers. "We" are missing out. How do we draw from the quiet? The reserved? We all know fun people we like to have a beer with...they're easy! But for a meaningful dialogue? Next time, invite an introvert! Now that's a good time!