Monday, October 16, 2006

The Introvert Advantage

So I finally finished reading this book which I bought some time back and felt that I had to share it with all my fellow innies. Since young I've always felt alone in a crowd, preferring to linger around quietly in a corner while observing the others. As I grew up it became even more obvious and at time people think of it as me being shy or even antisocial. Well to overcome it I tried to become more outgoing and try to fit in as much as possible but soon realise that I'm often tired and grumpy and not truly enjoying myself no matter how hard I tried. So what's so great about this book ?

Well the back cover claims that it's "Filled with Aha! moments of recognition" so what more could I loose than a couple of hours reading it and by the time I was done it struck me like lightning. I was truly amazed as to how much I could relate myself to what was being said. Everyone seems to vaguely know the difference between an extrovert and an introvert but what actually makes a person an innie. Being a person we certainly have moments where we were one or the other but apparently we are already hard wired to be just one majority of the time.

Was I glad I found this book to only realise that I'm normal and the select few innies in the world of extroverts. The thing that really hit me was how the author explains situations in which I have many times found myself in. An example would be how I hate to be disturbed by phone calls when I'm concentrating on work and often get irritated and moody when interrupted. It drains quite a bit of my energy to shift my focus on the call and then to get back my train of thoughts where I left them often having to start all over again which makes me even more irritated when the phone rings again the next time.

This is some of the general points that seperate introverts and extroverts though I'm sure there will some overlapping


Enjoy time alone
Consider only deep relationships as friends
Feel drained after outside activities, even if they were fun
Good listener
Appear calm and self-contained
Think then speak or act


Like to be in the thick of things
Relish variety
Know lots of people, considers lots of people friends
Enjoy chit-chatting, even to strangers
Feel stoked after activity
Speak or act then think OR think while speaking

Introverts need to recharge their energy and take care of their unique temperament in many areas of their lives. Check these tips out.


  • Take short rests before you are tired
  • Write in time-outs on your daily calendar
  • Include nature every day, sit in the yard, go for a walk, look at trees or set a soothing outdoor picture on your table
  • Create down time to store energy before any big event
  • Remind yourself its OK to be introverted

At Work

  • Since you may not speak in meetings, write a memo to co-workers/boss afterward with your comments and suggestions
  • Tell your boss you need to think before you can discuss your thoughts
  • Say thank you if someone gives you a compliment
  • Include yourself by coming early to meetings to help set up or clean up afterwards
  • Say hello to people, smile and say thank you to presenters at the end of meetings


  • Leave notes for those you care about
  • Talk about your differences based on your temperaments
  • Discuss how to clear up conflicts
  • You have the capacity to enjoy private time
  • Plan for couple and friend time


  • Choose which events you want to attend, it's OK to decline invitations
  • Remind yourself you may feel overstimulated at social gatherings and that is OK
  • Stay on the side-lines and observe before you enter festive occasions
  • Decide when you will arrive and leave, you can always stay longer if you feel peppy enough
  • Wear an interesting piece of jewelry or tie (usually guys) as a conversation starter

Dealing with Introverted Children

  • Explain introverted qualities to your child
  • Never correct your child in front of others
  • Let them watch before entering an activity
  • Encourage breaks to recharge
  • Realize they need time to think before responding to questions
So innies unite and be proud of being special in the sea of extrovert people