mp’s rating: 9.5/10
This book’s gold, literally. Susan Cain’s Quiet is on par with my other favourite non-fiction books of all times – including Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers and Randy Pausch’s The Last Lecture. Yes, it is that good.
I think I have been an introvert my whole life. I just never realised it.
It all started back in High School when we all underwent that scary phase of ‘searching for one’s soul’. Let’s be clear: people value extroversion. We worship it, even. We see those who are popular, and most often they talk well, they are highly social beings, and they can express their care to other people explicitly. They are the ones who speak up their minds and become the leaders.
So I tried to be that girl. I spoke my mind, and loudly too. I pretended to be friendly – okay, that sounds wrong, let’s just say I put a lot of extra effort to show that I care.
Of course, I failed. Not too miserably though. I was never and will never be the Prom Queen type of girl, but I was not at the bottom of social food chain as well.
In university, I began to notice things about myself. I hate socialising. I have a short energy bar for being with people and I need to muster every energy that I have to actually be social. I despise small talk. I still have to make them though, for that’s just how the world is programmed. I need three days of solitude to make up for that one day of going out.
I fancy my four-hour brunch alone with coffee and my iPad, my journal, and a good book.
So perhaps, I was an introvert. But I was not too sure. The things that I had done in High School and university differed by a great margin, such that they couldn’t possibly be done by one same person.
So I took tests. I have always believed that I was a pure sanguine. Now, I believe that I’m a pure phlegmatic. I did the Myer-Briggs and I got ISFP. Turns out, I actually am an introvert.
Reading this book confirmed what I have always thought I am.
I am, really, an introvert.
And I love being one.
This book tells you the story why introverts are used to not be given a second glance. It tells you why we introverts love to hold our tongues back in giving comments instead of adding wood to the fireplace. It conveys why we recharge by being alone, and why our greatest discoveries happen why we become the nerdy version of ourselves.
It shows why we, most often, hate collaborative work. Because it kills creativity.
The world of an introvert is often misunderstood, but as Susan Cain said, “Everyone shines, given the right lighting. For some, it’s a Broadway spotlight, for others, a lamplit desk.”
In sum: a wonderful book. A mind-blowing lesson. A must-read.