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Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking (edition 2012)

by Susan Cain

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4,1872461,196 (4.05)245
Member:cornerhouse
Title:Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking
Authors:Susan Cain
Info:Crown (2012), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 352 pages
Collections:eBook, Read in 2013 - Steve
Rating:***1/2
Tags:essays, psychology

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Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain

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Read as part of a non-fiction book club at the library. Great details about why introverts are the way they are and scientific studies about them. ( )
  benismydog | Mar 28, 2015 |
Eh. As usual with this sort of thing, Cain is a lot better as dismantling popularly-held views than she is at creating new ones.

She's right on about the over-valuation of extroversion (for example in schools and job situations) but really wishy-washy once she starts trying to create a taxonomy of introversion and putting people into boxes. I also don't buy the essentialism on display here; I don't agree that people trying to define themselves by these labels is at all helpful. I suppose I believe in introversion, but not introverts. ( )
1 vote sometimeunderwater | Mar 20, 2015 |
Notes from
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

The US army has a name for similar phenomenon. “The bus to Abilene “. It’s about a family sitting on a porch in Texas on a hot summer day, and somebody says “I am bored “. Why don’t we go to Abilene. When they got to Abilene, somebody says “you know, I didn’t really wanted to go to the next person says , I didn’t wanted to come either and so on. Whenever you are in an army group and somebody says we are all getting on the bus to Abilene here.
http://www.amazon.com/The.../dp/055380684X/ref=sr_1_1...
The Talent Code: Greatness Isn't Born. It's Grown. Here's How.
What is the secret of talent? How do we unlock it? In this...

indeed, excessive stimulation seems to impede learning. A recent study found out that people learn better after a quite stroll through the woods than after a noisy walk down the city street.
http://pss.sagepub.com/content/19/12/1207

The Cognitive Benefits of Interacting With Nature

Marc G. Berman1,2,
John Jonides1 and
Stephen Kaplan1,3

+ Author Affiliations

1Department of Psychology


2Department of Industrial and Operations Engineering


3Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Michigan

Marc G. Berman, Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, 530 Church St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109–1043, e-mail: bermanm@umich.edu.

Abstract

We compare the restorative effects on cognitive functioning of interactions with natural versus urban environments. Attention restoration theory (ART) provides an analysis of the kinds of environments that lead to improvements in directed-attention abilities. Nature, which is filled with intriguing stimuli, modestly grabs attention in a bottom-up fashion, allowing top-down directed-attention abilities a chance to replenish. Unlike natural environments, urban environments are filled with stimulation that captures attention dramatically and additionally requires directed attention (e.g., to avoid being hit by a car), making them less restorative. We present two experiments that show that walking in nature or viewing pictures of nature can improve directed-attention abilities as measured with a backwards digit-span task and the Attention Network Task, thus validating attention restoration theory.

Another study found out that the simple act of being interrupted is one of the biggest barriers to productivity. Even multi-tasking turns out to be a myth. Scientists now know that the brain is incapable of paying attention to two things at the same time. What looks like multi-tasking is really switching back and forth between multiple tasks, which reduces productivity and increases mistake by up to 50 percent.
http://www.amazon.com/Myth-Multitasking.../dp/0470372257
The Myth of Multitasking: How "Doing It All" Gets Nothing Done
In a compelling business fable, The Myth of Multitasking...

Montogomery, Alabama. December 1, 1995. Early evening. A public bus pulls to stop and a sensibly dressed woman in her forties gets on. Her name was Rosa Parks and when she refused to give up her seat for a white passenger, it ignited a spark that ultimately led to the civil rights movement.
http://www.amazon.com/Rosa.../dp/0143036009/ref=sr_1_6...
Rosa Parks: A Life
Fifty years after she made history by refusing to give up her seat on a bus, Rosa Parks at last gets the major..

High reactive kids (Introverts) may be more likely to develop into artists and writers and scientists and thinkers because their aversion to novelty causes them to spend time inside the familiar – and intellectually fertile – environment of their own heads.
The orchid hypothesis by David Dobbs stated that many children are like dandelions, able to thrive in just about any environment. But others, including the high reactive types that kagan studied, are more like orchids: they wilt easily, but under the right conditions can grow strong and magnificent.
http://www.theatlantic.com/.../the-science-of.../307761/

In monkeys as well as humans, a gene known as the serotonin transporter gene ( SERT ) gene , or 5-HTTLPR, helps to regulate the processing of serotonin , a neurotransmitter that affects mood. A particular variation or allele , of this gene, sometimes referred to as the short arm , is thought to be associated with high reactivity and introversion, as well as a heightened risk of depression in human who have had difficult lives.
When baby monkeys with a similar allele were subjected to stress – in one experiment they were taken from their mothers and raised as orphans – they processed serotonin less efficiently (a risk factor for depression and anxiety) than monkeys with the long allele which endured similar privations.
But young monkeys with the same risky genetic profile who were raised by nurturing mothers did as well as or better than their long allele brethren – even those raised in similarly secure environments – at key social task , like finding play mates , building alliances , and handling conflicts. They often became leaders of their troops. they also processed serotonin more efficiently.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/...

Studies on humans have found that adolescent girls with the short allele of the SERT gene are 20 percent more likely to be depressed than long-allele girls when exposed to stressful family environments, but 25 percent less likely to be depressed when raised in stable homes. Similarly short allele adults have shown to be more anxious in evenings than others on as stressful days, but less anxiety on calm days.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18075477

High reactive children raised in supportive environment are even more resistant to common cold and other respiratory tract illness, but get sick more easily if there raised in stressful conditions. The short allele gene is also associated with higher performance on a wide range of cognitive task.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/...

Schwartz’s research suggests something important: we can stretch our personalities, but only up to a point. Our inborn temperaments influence us, regardless of the lives we lead. A sizable part of who we re is so ordained by our genes, by our brains, by our nervous system s. and yet the elasticity that Schwartz found in some high reactive teens also suggest the converse: we have free will and can use it to shape our personalities. They are not contradictory.
Free will can take us far, but cannot carry us beyond our genetic limits. Bill gates can never be Bill Clinton, no matter how he polishes his social skills, and Bill Clinton can never be Bill gates, no matter how much time he spends with the computer.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12817151

Introverts are more likely to blush. Extroverts perform at a louder back ground noise than the introverts.
Roosevelt declares there is nothing to fear but fear itself.
The highly sensitive tend to be philosophical or spiritual in their orientation, rather than materialistic or hedonistic. They dislike small talk. They often describe themselves as creative or intuitive. They dream vividly and can often recall their dreams the next day. They feel exceptionally strong emotions. They process information from the environment unusually deeply. They tend to notice subtleties other miss – another person’s shift in mood, say or a light bulb burning a touch too brightly.

For introverts, shy and fearful of stammering there is a simple remedy. Before making any speech or stressful situation, in your mind keep on saying A E U O I A E.. Repeatedly. Then you will notice you can speak and articulate more freely.
Introverts should ask themselves, will this job allow me to spend time on in- character activities like, for example, reading, strategizing, writing and researching? Will I have a private workplace or be subject to constant demands of an open office plan? If the job does not give me enough restorative niches will I have enough free time on the weekends to grant them to myself.
Extroverts needs restorative niches too. Does the job involve talking, travelling, and meeting new people ?

Studies show that one third to one half of all of us is introverts. We all write our life stories as if we were novelists with beginnings, conflicts, turning points and endings. And the way we characterize our past setbacks profoundly influences how satisfied we are with our current lives. Unhappy people tend to see them as contaminants which ruined an otherwise good thing, while generative adults see them as a blessing in disguise. Those who live fully realized lives – giving back to their families , societies, and ultimately themselves – tend to find meaning in their obstacles

Introverts cn act as extrovert’s upto a certin point and need to come back to the restorative niche to recharge. One other thing that we can act or fake out of character as long as we feel that we are doing this for a worthy cause
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113236377590902105.html
The New White Flight
In Silicon Valley, two high schools with outstanding academic reputations are losing white students as Asian...
  pj100pl | Mar 1, 2015 |
This is an ambitious work, and a mostly successful one, thanks to its readability and Cain's careful research. Her work has several goals: to try to explain the manifestations and possible causes of introverted behavior, based on insights from psychology and biology; to promote qualities like seriousness, introspection and sensitivity that may not conform to the "Extravert Ideal" but are nonetheless necessary in business, science, art and many other fields; and to provide tips for introverts (and parents of introverts) on how to stretch and expand their abilities to deal with situations that aren't naturally comfortable. I hadn't read much on this topic before, so I found most of the material useful and interesting. The one section I didn't find appealing was her chapter on Asian culture, which to me skirts dangerously close to stereotype. The chapter's title is "Soft Power," but it seems misleading, as the introverted practices for the Asian-American kids profiled mostly stem from their choosing to study, study, study instead of socialize, and from personal experience I know this is not the best way to prepare for a successful life after college. Aside from that chapter, I enjoyed the book very much and it is much fodder for thought. ( )
1 vote bostonian71 | Feb 6, 2015 |
I wish I had had this book ten year ago. ( )
  DaftKnits | Jan 24, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Susan Cainprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Duffy, LauraCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fedor, AaronCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mazur, KatheNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Prosperi, CarloTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reitsma, Jan WillemTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wallin, BitteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
A species in which everyone was General Patton would not succeed, any more than would a race in which everyone was Vincent van Gogh. I prefer to think that the planet needs athletes, philosophers, sex symbols, painters, scientists; it needs the warmhearted, the hardhearted, the coldhearted, and the weakhearted. It needs those who can devote their lives to studying how many droplets of water are secreted by the salivary glands of dogs under which circumstances, and it needs those who can capture the passing impression of cherry blossoms in a fourteen-syllable poem or devote twenty-five pages to the dissection of a small boy's feelings as he lies in bed in the dark waiting for his mother to kiss him good night. . . . Indeed the presence of outstanding strengths presupposes that energy needed in other areas has been channeled away from them.

- Allen Shawn
Dedication
To my childhood family
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Introduction
The North and South of Temperament
Montgomery, Alabama. December 1, 1955. Early evening. A public bus pulls to a stop and a sensibly dressed woman in her forties gets on. She carries herself erectly, despite having spent the day bent over an ironing board in a dingy basement tailor shop at the Montgomery Fair department store. Her feet are swollen, her shoulders ache. She sits in the first row of the Colored section and watches quietly as the bus fills with riders. Until the driver orders her to give her seat to a white person.
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To ask whether it's nature or nurture ... is like asking whether a blizzard is caused by temperature or humidity.
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Book description
At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who invent and create but prefer not to pitch their own ideas; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled “quiet,” it is to introverts 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 the indelible stories of real people, Quiet shows how dramatically we undervalue introverts, and how much we lose in doing so. Susan Cain charts the rise of “the extrovert ideal” over the twentieth century and explores its far-reaching effects—how it helps to determine everything from how parishioners worship to who excels at Harvard Business School. And she draws on cutting-edge research on the biology and psychology of temperament to reveal how introverts can modulate their personalities according to circumstance, how to empower an introverted child, and how companies can harness the natural talents of introverts. This extraordinary book has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how they see themselves.
Haiku summary
Introverts are strong
their brains are just wired different
this can be a strength
(sullijo)

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At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who invent and create but prefer not to pitch their own ideas; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled "quiet," it is to introverts 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 the indelible stories of real people, Quiet shows how dramatically we undervalue introverts, and how much we lose in doing so. Susan Cain charts the rise of "the extrovert ideal" over the twentieth century and explores its far-reaching effects--how it helps to determine everything from how parishioners worship to who excels at Harvard Business School. And she draws on cutting-edge research on the biology and psychology of temperament to reveal how introverts can modulate their personalities according to circumstance, how to empower an introverted child, and how companies can harness the natural talents of introverts. This extraordinary book has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how they see themselves.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0670916765, 0141029196

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