Monday, February 11, 2013

Ten Ways to Know if You’re an Introvert ~ Quiet Book Review

Hi, my name is Meghan, and I’m an introvert.

“Hi, Meghan.”

Welcome to Introverts Anonymous. It’s the perfect group for you because most introverts do, in fact, wish to remain anonymous.

First, though, ten characteristics of introverts to help you know if you’re in the right group. {And please note that everyone is different. In fact, there are no set-in-stone definitions of introvert and extrovert.}

Introverts ~
  1. Prefer lower levels of stimulation, such as reading a book or having a one-on-one conversation with a close friend or family member.
  2. Work more slowly and deliberately than extroverts.
  3. Have significant powers of concentration.
  4. Are not as drawn to the lure of wealth or fame.
  5. Listen more than talk.
  6. Prefer to work alone.
  7. Often feel as if they express themselves better when writing than when speaking.
  8. Feel uncomfortable with small talk.
  9. Avoid conflict.
  10. Avoid risk.
How did you do?


Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking details a fascinating history of the rise of psychology and what I would call the idolatry of personality. It is so easy to become immersed in the nitty-gritty of why people are the way they are, but caution must be exercised or one personality “type” will soon be elevated as superior. This, in fact, is exactly what the author says has happened ~ the rise of the Extrovert Ideal.

Yet, introverts have a lot to offer such as attention to detail, thorough analysis, and a steady manner in communication. The American ideal of extroversion has convinced our culture to overlook the contributions of introverts, though, much to our detriment. Much of our modern way of life is the result of the deep thinking and innovation of introverts. Is the author right? I think so, but I would love to hear your opinion.

The writing is superb, and the author includes many personal anecdotes as well as incidents of famous introverts in a story-telling manner, relieving the book from having a research-paper feel. I was disappointed that it wasn’t more Christian. I requested it from a Christian publisher, but I’m not familiar with who owns whom in the publishing world, and the name on the spine didn’t match the website. There were many mentions of evolution, secularism, and politics. However, if you can bypass that, Quiet is well worth the read. You will come away from it understanding and accepting your own introversion better or the introversion of a spouse or child. You won’t want to miss the last fifty pages or so about living as or with an introvert. The author has provided a Q&A for download for your own personal use or for use in a book discussion group.

Above all, I’m reminded that, no matter whether introvert or extrovert, we are all fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of our Creator. 





Are you an introvert? Or are you married to an introvert? What do you think introverts have to offer?

This book was provided to me by the publisher, WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group, in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

This post contains an affiliate link. Purchasing through this link doesn’t cost you any extra, but it ever-so-slightly blesses our family financially.




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38 comments:

  1. I am definitely an introvert and just realized it towards the end of last year when I saw an article about it. All my life my mother and then my husband would call me (and now my eldest daughter) "anti-social". It was hard to explain to them that I really wasn't anti-socializing... I just didn't enjoy it as much as they thought I should. I like small groups or a crowd so large that I disappear in it and I could sit somewhere and people watch or read a book! lol My husband likes to go over to friends house or a party and be the last to leave... I'm good to leave after an hour. After we do socialize, sometimes I'm mentally exhausted and I just want to relax. My husband doesn't understand it. Thanks for sharing this book! I'm hoping to get it and read it along with my husband. Maybe it will enlighten him. I can also share what I've learned with my daughter so she doesn't have to grow up like I did with people calling her anti-social. She can be confident in who God made her to be and He will use her just as she is: a beautiful and wonderfully made introvert!
    God bless!

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    1. You're right, Yasmin. It's not anti-social, just different-social. Enjoy the book, and I hope it's helpful in your family. Thanks for visiting!

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  2. Visiting from The Better Mom Mondays linkup - enjoyed reading your post! I am an introvert, and in fact, am in the midst of reading the book "Quiet" myself! It has a lot of helpful insight - am appreciating reading it! Great list of the ten points in your list - I identify with them. Thanks for your thoughts ...

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  3. I'm most definitely an introvert. Absolutely the culture values extroverts right now, and in fact, I've even heard in Christian circles that being introverted is sinful! Although I do have to work a bit harder to make friends in general, and to be a witness for Christ, I feel blessed to be an introvert.

    In Christ,
    Melissa

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    1. Sinful?! Why? Because we don't want to stand up and shout and hand out tracts in front of Wal-Mart to perfect strangers? There are plenty of ways for introverts to be involved in ministry and evangelism. I know you're a mother of six, Melissa. Our first mission field is right there at home. Well, before I get up on my soapbox... Thanks for visiting!

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  4. Hi Meghan! I enjoyed this post. I'm an introvert and yes, I did say "yes!" to each of those questions lol. I have really struggled with being an introvert and only recently accepted that it is who I am and I don't have to be an extrovert for God to use me.

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    1. Good for you, Del! God can use anyone, can't he? No requirements, except a willing heart.

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  5. I am an introvert. At one time, I was told I was being prideful and the Lord would not bless me because of it. Anytime I think about that comment, all I do is shake my head.

    My husband and I are opposites. He is quiet but is outgoing. He loves to talk and be around others, while I had rather be left in a corner and not be bothered.

    We both understand each other. He has a wife who is an introvert and quickly learned he can't make someone like me do something they are uncomfortable with. He has also learned he can't "leave me" with a group of people and mingle. This is something we both work on. It also gives me the opportunity to meet others with him by my side without being so fearful.

    I think me being me has helped him to not be the over talker that he can be.

    I'm going to have to read this book. Thanks!

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    1. It's amazing how having our husbands by our sides can make us a bit more bold. (It also works with my children.) What an excellent point! It's funny that you called him an over-talker. I'm sure he doesn't think he is. So glad you commented, Lori!

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  6. Great review, Meghan! That book is on my to-read list. I am definitely an introvert too. My husband is more extroverted than I but pretty to himself like me. However, one of our daughters is markedly extroverted. It certainly makes for an interesting family dynamic!

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    1. Yes, Keri, very interesting! But since you know now, you can study and make conscious efforts to allow for her extroversion. We have a daughter as well that shows signs, but she's still a little young yet, I think, to know for sure. I'd love to know your thoughts on the book once you read it.

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  7. How funny--I have always thought I was an extrovert, but I seem to fit all the above except #5 & #6! :) I think I'm still an extrovert, just a weird one. :)

    I think introverts offer much-needed listeners in the loud conversation of extroverts! :) I also think introverts tend to be very loyal (at least the introverts in my life are!) And I am very grateful for their attention to detail--something I struggle with very much.

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    1. Christa, maybe you are an introvert who is good at pretending she's an extrovert? That's a part of the book I didn't have room to touch on in my review. And I think you are definitely right about introverts' sense of loyalty, but perhaps we don't show it that well. :)

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  8. Loved that book! Your review is spot on. :) I am most definitely an introvert. While I am comfortable with that now, it took me a while to own it.

    Tanya
    (Titus 2sdays)

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    1. Thanks for your honesty, Tanya, and thanks for visiting!

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  9. I think I'm a very confident and outgoing introvert. ha!! Is that possible? :) Maybe I'm just a mama of many who craves her alone time! :)

    Have a great day!
    Sarah

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    1. According to the author, that's definitely possible, Sarah. (And an interesting combination!)

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  10. Found you on Modest Monday - what a great introduction to your blog - I am an introvert as well, and often feel at odds with our culture. I also recommend the book "The Highly Sensitive Person" - ticks lots of boxes for me too.

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    1. The author of "Quiet" also touches on being highly sensitive, explaining that despite the sound of the label, it's not a bad thing to be. I'll check out that book. Thanks, Alison, for visiting!

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  11. I'm a mix....introvert/extrovert. I have moments when I am almost off the charts extrovert...but that will almost certainly be followed by moments where I don't want to see anyone for days. I am a woman at war with herself. lol! Great post!

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    1. Cleverly said, Rosilind, and I wonder if that describes a lot of us. Sometimes we introverts get a hankering for society, but then we overdo it and exhaust ourselves. Thanks for adding to the conversation!

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  12. I'm about 50/50. =)My husband is definitely an introvert. =)

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    1. Sounds like a good match with benefits to both of you, Amber. Thanks for commenting!

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  13. I consider myself an ambivert. But, my husband is definitely an introvert!

    (Stopping by from the Wise Woman Link-up!)

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    1. I'm sure it's a benefit to the relationship - to any relationship - that you both know yourselves so well. Thanks for sharing your circumstances!

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  14. There is a Quiet read a long going on at http://www.joyweesemoll.com. I posted my responses to this today too.

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    1. Thanks for the link, Heather. I'm going to check out your post right now. I left the comment on Joy's blog post that I'm glad to see this issue of introversion being discussed and accepted.

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  15. I am definitely an introvert! And my husband is too, I think. And I'm pretty sure our daughter is an extrovert! haha Needless to say, she wears us out. :)

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    1. We all need to have a meeting to discuss our introversion, but do you think anyone would come? :) Thanks for dropping in, Jenni!

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  16. Thanks for linking this to the Quiet Read Along. I haven't finished the book yet, but now I'm really looking forward to the last fifty pages!

    Joy's Book Blog

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    1. Thanks so much for the link-up, Joy, and enjoy your reading!

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  17. Meghan,
    What a interesting topic! I beleive I am an introvert...work deliberately and slowly, yes! Fascinating stuff.
    I love that you come and link-up with us at Deep Roots At Home! Love all you share!

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    1. Jacqueline, I so much appreciate your blog and your link-up! I agree -- it is fascinating. I have always been interested in psychology that helps us discover who God made us to be. (As opposed to weird, mystical, I-am-God psychology!) Thanks so much for visiting!

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  18. I liked your comments and opinions which you shared on the book. After reading your list of what an introvert is, I think I am an introverted extrovert. I think that because over the years I have learned to be friendly and talk to people. When I first got married, I couldn't even talk on the phone...I learned how especially while I was a support group leader....and now...I hardly ever call anyone...I email them, LOL, or leave a comment on a blog, LOL!!

    Thanks for linking up over at WholeHearted Home this week.

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    1. I was just reading another blog, Judith, about how email and FB and texting has taken over telephone and face-to-face meetings. It's efficient, but technology doesn't really replace seeing someone in person. I don't think introverts have a problem with face-to-face as long as there is time to prepare and store up the necessary energy. :) When we're all so far away, though, there isn't really any other choice!

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  19. Hi Meghan, found your blog on 'Reading list's' Facebook page. This sounds like an interesting book.

    I'm definitely an introvert. Your list describes me to a tee. :) I've learnt to embrace the beauty of being an introvert and not let the opinions of others define me. And also to accept extroverts for their different gifts. :)

    I found another book called "Introverts in the Church: Finding our place in an extroverted culture" by Adam McHugh. Have you heard of it? It looks interesting as well.

    I look forward to reading more of your blog. Have a great day!

    Cathy@Thoughts on Books

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    1. I have heard wonderful things about "Introverts in the Church" but I haven't read it yet. I have thought about it all through reading "Quiet", so I'll probably get to it soon. Thanks for visiting, Cathy!

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I so much appreciate your time and effort in leaving a comment, and I try to respond to as many as time permits. :-)