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4 Books Introverts Wish You Would Read

4 Books Introverts Wish You Would Read

The latest estimates put the number of people who identify as “introverts” at 50%. That’s an increase of nearly 30% from a few decades ago. Could it be that the instance of the introverted personality trait is increasing as time goes on? Perhaps more and more people are gaining an understanding of the introverted personality trait and are identifying those aspects in themselves. Whatever the reason, books about introverts, extroverts, and the struggles between them keep coming.  Here are four books that take the reader inside the mysterious minds of those who identify as “introverts” and what it’s like to live in their worlds. You may find a little (or a lot) of yourself in these writings…

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    1. Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, by Susan Cain

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      Perhaps THE book that inspired the current love affair with all things introverted, Susan Cain brings us the vanguard writing on introverts and how they manage in a world where extroversion seems to lead the way while introversion is often viewed as something that needs to be fixed.

      Cain begins with a short history lesson recounting the U.S.’s culture shift away from the building of character and toward the “cult of personality” when we started to see extroversion as the gateway to personal and professional success. From there she moves on to extol the virtues of the introverted mindset and ends with a call to action for society in general to rethink its views of introversion in all aspects of life from how we educate our children to how we lead our organizations. The success of the book has spawned an ever-growing online community of introverts who connect on Facebook and through Cain’s website Quiet Revolution.

      2. The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together, by Jennifer B. Kahnweiller, PhD

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      O Ginásio do Pacaembu recebeu, neste sábado (02/04), a 26ª edição do Jungle Fight Championship - by Pretorian, o maior evento de MMA da América Latina.

        Can introverts and extroverts work together successfully? According to Kahnweiler, the answer is a resounding yes, with exponential results. However the path to success can be fraught with opportunities for these tenuous relationships between opposites to break down. Kahnweiller discusses well-known opposite duos that have made it work, as well as some who failed, and she provides a 5-step process she believes will set these pairs up for success.

        3. The Introvert’s Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World, by Sophia Dembling

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          With chapter titles like “Quiet Riot” and “Hell is a Cocktail Party,” The Introvert’s Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World could be taken as the heavy metal version of Cain’s Quiet…. Irreverent and un-apologetic, this book further illustrates the misconceptions and deep-seated biases introverts and extroverts have toward each other; and offers a “safe space” for the introverted among us to flip society the *quiet* bird for trying to change who we are.

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          4. The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You, by Elaine N. Aron, PhD

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            Let’s get it out of the way right off the bat… all introverts are not highly sensitive and all highly sensitive people are not introverts. The terms are not interchangeable. However, evidence suggests that people who fall into the introverted category also have a higher incidence of what Elaine Aron terms “high sensitivity.” According to Aron a “highly sensitive person” is someone who may be easily overwhelmed by external stimuli like the light and sound one may encounter at a large gathering. The “high sensitive” may need to remove him- or herself from these types of situations in order to re-group and recharge. High sensitives may display more empathy, feel more deeply, and in general be more reflective than the less sensitive among us – traits also commonly attributed to introverts. It shouldn’t come as a surprise, then, that Aron characterizes Carl Jung as a high sensitive (1996).

            Backlash against the “new” love affair with introversion

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            Maybe it’s that introverts are getting all the attention or that they no longer feel they need to apologize for being themselves. Or maybe it’s because this country loves an underdog…Whatever it is, these days it seems introverts get all the love while extroverts are cast as loud-mouthed jerks be-boppin’ and scattin’ their way through life with all the self-awareness of a freight train. Either way if you are an introvert, work with introverts or otherwise share your life with introverts, these books provide insights into their worlds that may help you understand them (and yourself) a little better.

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            Last Updated on April 6, 2020

            10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

            10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

            Most discussions on positively influencing others eventually touch on Dale Carnegie’s seminal work, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Written more than 83 years ago, the book touches on a core component of human interaction, building strong relationships. It is no wonder why.

            Everything that we do hinges on our ability to connect with others and formulate deep relationships. You cannot sell a house, buy a house, advance in most careers, sell a product, pitch a story, teach a course, etc. without building healthy relationships. Managers get the best results from their teams, not through brute force, but to careful appeals to their sensibilities, occasional withdrawals from the reservoir of respect they’ve built. Using these tactics, they can influence others to excellence, to productivity, and to success.

            Carnegie’s book is great. Of course, there are other resources too. Most of us have someone in our lives who positively influences us. The truth is positively influencing people is about centering the humanity of others. Chances are, you know someone who is really good at making others feel like stars. They can get you to do things that the average person cannot. Where the requests of others sound like fingernails on a chalkboard, the request from this special person sounds like music to your ears. You’re delighted to not only listen but also to oblige.

            So how to influence people in a positive way? Read on for tips.

            1. Be Authentic

            To influence people in a positive way, be authentic. Rather than being a carbon copy of someone else’s version of authenticity, uncover what it is that makes you unique.

            Discover your unique take on an issue and then live up to and honor that. Once of the reasons social media influencers are so powerful is that they have carved out a niche for themselves or taken a common issue and approached it from a novel or uncommon way. People instinctually appreciate people whose public persona matches their private values.

            Contradictions bother us because we crave stability. When someone professes to be one way, but lives contrary to that profession, it signals that they are confused or untrustworthy and thereby, inauthentic. Neither of these combinations bode well for positively influencing others.

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            2. Listen

            Growing up, my father would tell me to listen to what others said. He told me if I listened carefully, I would know all I needed to know about a person’s character, desires and needs.

            To positively influence others, you must listen to what is spoken and what is left unsaid. Therein lies the explanation for what people need in order to feel validated, supported and seen. If a person feels they are invisible, and unseen by their superiors, they are less likely to be positively influenced by that person.

            Listening meets a person’s primary need of validation and acceptance.

            Take a look at this guide on how to be a better listener: How to Practice Active Listening (A Step-By-Step Guide)

            3. Become an Expert

            Most people are predisposed to listen to, if not respect, authority. If you want to positively influence others, become an authority in the area in which you seek to lead others. Research and read everything you can about the given topic, and then look for opportunities to put your education into practice.

            You can argue over opinions. You cannot argue, or it is unwise to argue, over facts and experts come with facts.

            4. Lead with Story

            From years of working in the public relations space, I know that personal narratives, testimonials and impact stories are incredibly powerful. But I never cease to be amazed with how effective a well-timed and told story can be.

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            If you want to influence people, learn to tell stories. Your stories should be related to the issue or concept you are discussing. They should be an analogy or metaphor that explains your topic in ordinary terms and in vivid detail. To learn more about how to tell powerful stories, and the ethics of storytelling, take a look at this article: How To Tell An Interesting Story In 4 Simple Steps

            5. Lead by Example

            It is incredibly inspiring to watch passionate, talented people at work or play. One of the reasons a person who is not an athlete can be in awe of athletic prowess is because human nature appreciates the extraordinary. When we watch the Olympics, Olympic trials, gymnastic competitions, ice skating, and other competitive sports, we can recognize the effort of people who day in and day out give their all. C

            ase in point: Simone Biles. The gymnast extraordinaire won her 6TH all-around title at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships after doing a triple double. She was the first woman to do so. Watching her gave me chills. Even non-gymnasts and non-competitive athletes can appreciate the talent required to pull off such a remarkable feat.

            We celebrate remarkable accomplishments and believe that their example is proof that we too can accomplish something great, even if it isn’t qualifying for the Olympics. To influence people in a positive way, we must lead by example, lead with intention and execute with excellence.

            6. Catch People Doing Good

            A powerful way to influence people in a positive way is to catch people doing good. Instead of looking for problems, look for successes. Look for often overlooked, but critically important things that your peers, subordinates and managers do that make the work more effective and more enjoyable.

            Once you catch people doing good, name and notice their contributions.

            7. Be Effusive with Praise

            It did not take me long to notice a remarkable trait of a former boss. He not only began and ended meetings with praise, but he peppered praise throughout the entire meeting. He found a way to celebrate the unique attributes and skills of his team members. He was able to quickly and accurately assess what people were doing well and then let them and their colleagues know.

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            Meetings were not just an occasion to go through a “To Do” list, they were opportunities to celebrate accomplishments, no matter how small they are.

            8. Be Kind Rather Than Right

            I am going to level with you; this one is tough. It is easy to get caught up in a cycle of proving oneself. For people who lack confidence, or people who prioritize the opinions of others, being right is important. The validation that comes with being perceived as “right” feeds one’s ego. But in the quest to be “right,” we can hurt other people. Once we’ve hurt someone by being unkind, it is much harder to get them to listen to what we’re trying to influence them to do.

            The antidote to influencing others via bullying is to prioritize kindness above rightness. You can be kind and still stand firm in your position. For instance, many people think that they need others to validate their experience. If a person does not see the situation you experienced in the way you see it, you get upset. But your experience is your experience.

            If you and your friends go out to eat and you get food poisoning, you do not need your friends to agree that the food served at the restaurant was problematic for you. Your own experience of getting food poisoning is all the validation you need. Therefore, taking time to be right is essentially wasted and, if you were unkind in seeking validation for your food-poison experience, now you’ve really lost points.

            9. Understand a Person’s Logical, Emotional and Cooperative Needs

            The Center for Creative Leadership has argued that the best way to influence others is to appeal to their logical, emotional and cooperative needs. Their logical need is their rational and educational need. Their emotional need is the information that touches them in a deeply personal manner. The cooperative need is understanding the level of cooperation various individuals need and then appropriately offering it.

            The trick with this system is to understand that different people need different things. For some people, a strong emotional appeal will outweigh logical explanations. For others, having an opportunity to collaborate will override emotional connection.

            If you know your audience, you will know what they need in order to be positively influenced. If you have limited information about the people whom you are attempting to influence, you will be ineffective.

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            10. Understand Your Lane

            If you want to positively influence others, operate from your sphere of influence. Operate from your place of expertise. Leave everything else to others. Gone are the days when being a jack of all trades is celebrated.

            Most people appreciate brands that understand their target audience and then deliver on what that audience wants. When you focus on what you are uniquely gifted and qualified to do, and then offer that gift to the people who need it, you are likely more effective. This effectiveness is attractive.

            You cannot positively influence others if you are more preoccupied by what others do well versus what you do well.

            Final Thoughts

            Influencing people is about centering your humanity. If you want to influence others positively, focus on the way you communicate and improve the relationship with yourself first.

            It’s hard to influence others if you’re still trying to figure out how to communicate with yourself.

            More Tips About Making Influence

            Featured photo credit: Wonderlane via unsplash.com

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