Susan Cains “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking”

Last Updated: 18 Apr 2023
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In the introduction of Susan Cain’s Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking it told a story of Rosa Parks. She is the lady that would not change her seat on the public bus so a white passenger could take it. She simply said “No. ” Many think Rosa Parks was an extrovert personality but in fact she was an introvert personality. Martin Luther King Jr. was a great orator and with an extrovert personality so he was able to help Rosa Parks since she was timid and shy. Rosa still had “courage of a lion. ” Some ask how could she be quiet and courageous. Or how can quiet be strong? Today, we here, in the United States think we are a bunch of extroverts but in fact a study showed that one third to one half of Americans are introverts. We are told that to be a great person we have to be bold, or to be happy, we surly must be social. Americans pretend to be extroverts until their true colors come out when some life altering event changes them and makes them step back and look at their true natures. Truly we really like people who can put them self out there, someone who is comfortable in the spot light of life.

But this is not the case with many successful people. Many wealthy, smart, and gifted people are not extroverts. Extroverts tend to tackle assignments quickly, make rash decisions, do multitasking, are risk takers, like money and status. They are the people who are the life of the party and love to laugh and talk. Introverts work more slowly and deliberately, focus on one task at a time, can concentrate well, they don’t really care to much for wealth or fame. They have social skills but after a while would just prefer to be at home with family or close friends.

They are good listeners, they think before speaking and they express better in writing it than saying it. The introduction left us with a question if we can shape ourselves and make what we will of our lives. Can We? Chapter 5 Summary Susan Cain opened chapter 5 about her experience going to visit Dr. Carl Schwartz and seeing a multimillion-dollar fMRI (functional resonance magnetic imaging) machine. The fMRI can measure which parts of the brain are active when you’re thinking a particular thought or performing a specific task.

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They are really interested in activity in the amygdale the powerful organ inside the brain that Kagan found played such an important role is shaping some introverts and extroverts personalities. They test infants through their late teens. They have a theory that people are of high or low reactive temperaments and that our inborn temperaments influence us regardless of the lives we lead. Who we are is ordained by our genes, our brains and our nervous systems. We can stretch ourselves-within limits. We can even reach for the outer limits of our temperaments.

We can get out of our comfort zones. We can even project artificial enthusiasm but there is no one more courageous than the person who speaks with the courage of his convictions. I do not think that our inborn temperaments do remain the same throughout our entire life. The events we face in life change us, such as marriage and parenting can make us more patient or less patient. Birth and death can change our temperaments as well as so could sickness and health. I believe that each thing we face in life teaches us lessons and with lessons we change our very being.

I think that we stretch our personalities with each different circumstance in life because we just have to, we have to be able to live in harmony with ourselves as well as others at home, work, with our friends and extended family. And to that we must adapt and stretch ourselves. I had to stretch my introvert personality when I started playing the piano. I wanted to learn to play for myself but soon realized I had to play in front of my teacher, my parents (whom was paying the teacher). Then came the recitals.

Then came the church music solos of playing the piano and singing at the same time! It was difficult for me to let people just sit and watch me perform. But you know what, I adapted my personality to do this talent. I recently played and sang at my high school graduation and was chosen to make a speech of what I was thankful for in life and about my future plans for my career. So I did overcome my quiet, shy temperament. I smiled, spoke loud, fast and clear and tired to act as if I was an extrovert.

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Susan Cains “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking”. (2017, May 25). Retrieved from

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