I don't usually opt for non-fiction books, but when I read a few quotes from Susan Cain's book Quiet, I rushed out to find a copy. The book describes the world from an introvert's point of view, the need to recharge the batteries, and the preference for in-depth one-to-one conversations as opposed to group discussions:
Introverts, in contrast, may have strong social skills and enjoy parties and business meetings, but after a while wish they were home in their pyjamas. They prefer to devote their social energies to close friends, colleagues, and family. They listen more than they talk, think before they speak, and often feel as if they express themselves better in writing than in conversation. They tend to dislike conflict. Many have a horror of small talk, but enjoy deep discussions.
Not only does the book describe the experiences of introverts, including Susan Cain herself, it explains the need for an introvert to step back from over-stimulated environments.
Susan also describes how the world has become increasingly geared towards extroverts, to such an extent that some introverts have started to try an emulate extrovert characteristics and in doing so are causing themselves undue stress. Susan believes that "quietness, shyness and solitude have come to be seen as second-rate, weak and almost shameful, while the projection of confidence and being (or at least pretending to be) outgoing and verbally voluble has come to be seen as the cultural ideal." Our classrooms and office spaces now have a "group working" layout, good-talkers are rewarded and quiet workers often sidelined.
If you are an introvert or not, the book is an interesting read and certainly a book you will find yourself quoting out loud to anyone that will listen!
Girl Museum Inc.