quite quiet
A to Z challenge - Life and Inspiration

Quite Quiet

It’s only a few years ago that I realized I have always been an introvert and that for many years I pretended to be an extrovert. And now that I know this, I’ve begun to get comfortable with being quiet. In fact, I long to be quite quiet.

Quite Quiet

Have you noticed how
Anger is loud
Pain is vocal
Hate shouts
Revenge screams
Fear shrieks
Pride yammers
Insecurity calls
Discrimination rants
Discontent grumbles?

Have you noticed how
Day turns to night
Seasons change
Years go by
Children grow
Empathy listens
Care reaches out
Love embraces
Hope inspires
Hearts heal
Faith empowers
Quite quietly?

quite quiet

I came across this book a couple of years ago – but didn’t buy it until recently. I’ve just started reading it and thought I’d share it with you: Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain

About the book:

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 mega church, Susan Cain charts the rise of the Extrovert Ideal in the twentieth 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.


Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Do you enjoy quiet?

This post is written for the letter ‘Q’ for the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge 2014.

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An inspirational writer, a creativity and writing trainer/coach, I write about life, gratitude, healing, wellness, relationships at Everyday Gyaan. I offer training/coaching to anyone looking to explore their creativity and heal through writing via The Frangipani Creative, located in Secunderabad, India. You can also find me on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Sign up for my weekly newsletter, Bytes of Gyaan, on Substack.

57 Comments on “Quite Quiet

  1. Hey Corrine

    Even as I read your first sentence, I thought about Quiet by Susan Cain, a book that has ‘quietly’ become THE BEST book I have read in the last few years!

    I am an introvert too. I hate over-stimulation, prefer my solitude and burn out after schmoozing for too long.

    In fact, I plan to pen my TOP 5 Books for today’s challenge, and Quiet was No 1 on the list.

    Lots of love #HUGSSS


    PS: I refuse to finish the book because I am afraid to part. 🙂 But I will get it done and read it again. I want to start penning Book Reviews, and this one is a MUST-REVIEW! 😀

  2. I have been following Susan Caine’s blog of the same name for a couple of months now… I want to read this book badly, …I thought it was published recently.. the quiet revolution is brewing out there… ..:)… before I read her words I never realized that being an introvert is not a humiliation, it’s OK, and very normal… 🙂
    Liked the poem, so true… nice post for write tribe prompt too…:)

  3. The book has been out for a while now, Pratikshya. If I’m not mistaken it won an award in 2012. I got myself the Kindle version since it was cheaper. Do read the book and we can compare notes. 🙂
    And isn’t it so freeing to know we’re okay? 🙂

  4. Very interesting read Corinne – I enjoyed it! Being around people gives me energy, and think I would label myself as an extrovert but with needs for those quiet space sometimes… Just sit and “be” .. It feels good:-) Will check out that book, thanks for the tip:-)

  5. I bought that book a few weeks ago and gave it to my husband – when he’s done with it I definitely want to read it. I’m still trying to figure out if he’s an introvert or extrovert, but I’m pretty sure I’d label myself as a shy extrovert.

  6. Corienne, I love the way you break into poetry in the middle of nowhere.I too am an introvert who pretends to be an extrovert…guess I should read this book! Dropping in from UBC 🙂

  7. 🙂 What a wonderful response to the prompt, Corinne!
    Amazon once recommended the book to me based on something else I’d downloaded. After read your post I downloaded the book and will be reading it.
    Depending on the company, I think I turn introvert or extrovert 🙂 What do you think? ♥
    Loved the verse!

    1. Thanks, Vidya. I know exactly what you mean about turning into an introvert or extrovert depending on the people we are with. However, I think it’s more to do with our working and problem solving styles. I think we can learn to be friendly and outgoing and still long to be alone! 😉

  8. Well it is perhaps no secret that I am not an extrovert 🙂 I like my solitude, my quiet time with myself, working on my stuff whatever it is that fascinates me at the moment. Not really a party/outgiong type person, but does that make a true introvert? I am not so sure. Because I still enjoy interacting with people that I connect with on some common mental/intellectual wavelength. Yet I also know that when the interaction goes on for too long I yearn to retreat and go back into myself, by myself. O well….Have heard some of Susan Cain’s talks, but didn’t get a chance to read her book. Maybe soon. Thanks for this thought-provoking post, Corinne. And good going with the verses!

  9. Love the post Corinne 🙂 It is interesting how confusing these labels are and also how people think of us as one and we are the other or a mix of the two, which I suspect I am. I need solitude everyday or else I feel burnt out. Enjoyed your poem- quite quietly and also getting to know about the book 🙂

  10. —I will check out the book and her blog after I type this. Thank you for the review, Corinne.
    People would probably consider me an extrovert, but I don’t…I am only extroverted when I’m completely comfortable w/ my environment.
    & I love being alone, too, so perhaps I’m a bit of both.

    1. I hope you like the book, Kim.
      Thank you for sharing. I’ve learned to act extroverted – partly because I come from a huge extended family and I had to survive! 😉
      Happy Easter to you and the family! ♥

  11. Loved the poem Corinne! And I am a bit of both I think…depends in the co’ but I love my ‘me’ time…The book seems interesting…thanks for sharing the manifesto..point 5 so so true!!

  12. Lovely post. I believe that we all are introverts and extroverts – otherwise we would go completely lunatic if we were only one of those. I too enjoy my moments in solitude and quiet.

  13. Thought-provoking post, and a superb Manifesto.

    As is evident from your post and from some of the comments, most, maybe all, people are comfortable in some situations (or with some people), but not-so-comfortable (or uncomfortable) in other situations (or with other people).

    I think the difference between “extroverts” and “introverts” is, “extroverts” are comfortable in more situations (or with more people) while “introverts” are comfortable in fewer situations (or with fewer people).

  14. I am an introvert too and I definitely don’t mind being alone. Instead I relish in the solitude 🙂 Its making new friends or talking to strangers that I dread the most!! Makes me nervous a lot

  15. Lovely post! And I loved that poem! I used to be an introvert when I was a child and it’s only over the years that has changed because of a few people who believed and brought out the best in me…
    I guess everyone needs someone to bring out the best in them and one thing I know a true introvert is usually an extrovert when he/she is with the ones that they are close to!

  16. I am an introvert, no doubt about that.. 😀 It is hard to be a pretend-extrovert.. but then there are a select few with whom we become extroverts without even realizing it. Those are the people we treasure the most, aren’t they?
    Loved the poem, Corinne.. and the book looks like a great read.. 🙂

  17. Corinne, what am I? an introvert or an extrovert? I think I am a mix of both, sometimes I like to be alone and at other times I need to be around people. Life would be so boring if there were no colors except black and white, we need greys too. I would definitely love to read this book.
    I am an introvert who can’t stop talking 🙂

  18. I’m not sure… I’ve yet to figure out which I am! The older I get, the more I prefer to be home, but to make myself sit in front of my computer for hours, I have headphones in and Netflix streaming in a small screen on the right… I’ve tried quiet many times and it’s hard for me to stay focused if I don’t have something going on around me. Not sure what that means!

    I will say for those like me who aren’t sure, most personality tests don’t split it into two. There are many different grays (as the above commenter mentioned) when it comes to introverts and extroverts. Personality tests say I’m an extrovert when I’m comfortable in a situation but in new surroundings, I’m an introvert, for example.

  19. I pretend to be an extrovert, but I am an introvert…same as you said for yourself.
    Indeed that quiet is truly amazing and enlightening ….
    Corinne…. those lines touched my heart…

  20. Interesting post. I’ve always thought of myself as an extrovert, but as I get older, the introverted existence becomes more and more appealing.

  21. When my kids were little, if I wanted to get their attention, I would whisper – worked every time! No yelling necessary.

    I am an extrovert which helped through so many years of trauma. I could hide behind my personality 🙂

  22. That poem is the best expression of emotions, Corinne. Succint and powerful all at once. I am an introvert too, though you wouldn’t guess that from the way I interact online 😉

  23. I am in introvert ! but I also love to be with people; at the same time I prefer to have quiet moments with myself ! thank you for sharing !

  24. Now you kept me thinking, quietly. I thought I am extrovert..still think so…not until I read this post and the book makes me think even more..Loved the poem…I like being quiet to myself on some days and some days no one can stop me….I blabber..blabber a lot 🙂

  25. I loved your poem and I guess I must be an introvert for all intents and purposes! Thanks to your informative post I was able to identify my personality finally…so thank you! ♥

  26. The poem is wonderful and the book sounds like good reading. I will add it to my list. I am an introvert, but I can be social when I need to. I grow so weary of people thinking we need constant stimulation whether its chatter, piped in music or nonstop television. I love my husband, but I cherish my time alone. Good post.

  27. I’m still not sure whether I’m an extrovert or an introvert… I haven’t figured it out but I’ also glad I don’t fit into any mold! 😉

    the last 4 lines are powerful Corinne. Loved it!
    “Love embraces
    Hope inspires
    Hearts heal
    Faith empowers”

  28. Quite like your yesterday’s post Corinne.. I like the idea of liking oneself as we are. We need introverts just as much we need the extroverts. The world would be incomplete without either kind, right? Some like to talk and some to listen.. It’s both together who make a happy gathering. As for me.. I’m an introvert disgusted as an extrovert!

  29. This is very lovely, Right along the lines of some of my thinking recently. I’ve long been torn between what is “expected” of me and what is “most comfortable” for me. I will be checking on the book and the Blog. Thank You !

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