Here's to the Quiet Ones

Monday, March 12, 2012

At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. In her book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, Susan Cain looks at why introverts are often overlooked, despite their many accomplishments, including major works of art to the early personal computer. She also examines what neuroscience reveals about the differences between extroverts and introverts.


Susan Cain

Comments [13]

jim from Orange County ny

In the past I thought that being an introvert was a negative characteristic.It is not. I am happy with who I am.

Mar. 16 2012 12:29 PM
Justin from VA

Tests like the myers briggs are consistent in their typing but their ability to make real world predictions are grossly overestimated by many in HR departments. Would have been great to hear the science on that.

Also...Doesn't the voice of the guest make a tremendous difference in the quality of a podcast/interview? Ms.Cain really enuncaites s's and t's which I usually find grating, but she manages to make it lovely.

Mar. 13 2012 09:29 AM
Bernadette from Midtown

Does Ms. Cain indicate in her book that introverts do not have to change and should be valued as they are. Does she suggest a way, for introverts to make peace with who they are while being pressured to change or ignored or underestimated as they are.

Mar. 12 2012 02:24 PM
Amy from Manhattan

I didn't catch the name of the person Ms. Cain quoted as saying the extrovert trait would drive out the "inferior" introvert trait, but he has no idea how evolution works!

Mar. 12 2012 02:03 PM

Could you ask Ms. Cain (?) if introverts are people who have difficulty reading social cues or is that something different? I have difficulty reading social cues, as do my kids, but I'm not shy in any way. I do like quiet though.

Mar. 12 2012 01:57 PM
E.L. from b'lyn

My conviction is that the Extraverts (EVs) and Intraverts (IVs) are not two different groups of people.
A whole person possesses both qualities. Most of as are not whole, Some lack qualities attributed to EVs, while others are limited in IVs characteristics.
So, I see the “glasses” not as half filled, but rather not full to different degree.

Mar. 12 2012 01:56 PM
Laura from New Providence NJ

The Meyers-Briggs profile defines extroverts as those who get their energy from being with people, and introverts as those who get energy by being solitary - and there are definitely levels of these. Looks like these are being discussed on the show.

Mar. 12 2012 01:48 PM
Mark from New Jersey

I liked her comment that so many of the attorneys in her firm were introverts.

I am an attorney, which in some ways is a terrific profession for an introvert. When I represent someone, or take a position, I am doing so in a role - the "attorney me" is different from the "introvert me".

Mar. 12 2012 01:44 PM
Angela from Brooklyn

Being shy is not the same thing as being introverted.

Mar. 12 2012 01:43 PM

This does not sound like an introverted person!

Mar. 12 2012 01:41 PM
Ansis Vallens from Chatham, NY

Please ask Ms. Cain: If anti-depressants can change introverts into extroverts? Also, can introverts behave like extroverts when they consider it part of the job? For example, I used to work as a newspaper reporter and be extremely aggressive. Later that night, I'd stand in the corner alone at a party -- and be perfectly happy.

Mar. 12 2012 12:01 PM

I understand the aim of the book has more to do with how extroverts can better appreciate introverts and draw on the introvert talent pool. But would love to hear more about how introverts are to succeed within this generally discouraging environment. Introverts not only have to compete with extroverts, but often also *depend* on extroverts (i.e., those who tend to be promoted to leadership roles) for recognizing and rewarding their achievements, and even providing them the conditions for continuing to be productive.

Even writers and artists tend to do better when they learn to schmooze. The super-brilliant might still earn recognition no matter what, at least posthumously, but what about the different volume of opportunities accorded to the truly talented and passionate introvert writer/artist, say, and one who's just pretty good but an extrovert?

Mar. 12 2012 10:49 AM
George from Brooklyn

Can parents and genetics influence introversion and extroversion?

Mar. 12 2012 04:17 AM

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