My Quiet Childhood

After watching Susan Cain’s talk:

I wanted to read her book.

I just finished reading Quiet. It connected with me.

When I was a kid, most nights I just wanted to stay home to read or draw instead of going out with friends (but I still loved my friends). I still feel like that now. Maybe even more now because I work with so many people during the day and at the end of the day, I just want to go home and be by myself and doing my own projects. Sometimes I feel guilty for wanting to stay home.

“Stimulation is the amount of input we have coming in from the outside world. It can take any number of forms, from noise to social life to flashing lights.”

I love teaching and my job. The problem for me is I work with too many people and I am constantly teaching and talking. By the end of the day, I just want to be quiet and do my own thing.

“…the best way to act out of character is to stay as true to yourself as you possibly can – starting by creating as many “restorative niches” as possible in your daily life.”

In high school, I dreaded classes where class participation was a big portion of my mark and class. I also thought to myself: “Why can’t I be like so-and-so? They always participate in class.”

I also remember in first year university, during Frosh Week, there were all these campus activities and cheers. When you were with your residence group and you met up with another residence, we had to cheer. I felt like I didn’t fit in. I didn’t want to be all loud and hyped up. That wasn’t my style. Sometimes I thought: maybe there was something wrong with me?

I don’t like to form an opinion about things that I don’t know a lot about (for example, I have a lot to talk about regarding education). I like to know all the information before deciding. This is one reason why I don’t speak much and listen a lot.

Although, I have adapted to different social situations quite well. But, I get really tired when I am over-stimulated in social situations.

Of course, no one is either an introvert or extrovert. It’s more of a scale. I am definitely leaning toward the introvert side.

“…we’ll each act out of character some of the time – in exchange for being ourselves the rest of the time.”

Susan Cain’s book wasn’t about how introverts were better. She wanted people to understand introverts and the way they behave. I liked the fact that throughout the book she explained the reasons behind these behaviours (introvert versus extrovert) using case studies and psychological studies. She also gave suggestions on how to respond to these behaviours. At the end of the book she also offered suggestions on parenting and introverted children.



  1. I watched the TED clip several weeks ago and really enjoyed it. I am definitely more of an introvert than an extrovert and I don’t feel the need to change my ways just because of societal expectations. Thanks for the book rec – just put a hold on it at the library!

    • Yes, I find that if you are not true to who you are (for example acting in a way that’s not the normal you), it’s tiring. Working with the government, I feel that I need to watch every single word that I say and how I present myself. I become “work me” and doing that for 8 hours a day is very tiring. Similar idea applies with introvert and extrovert, it seems.

      I hope you enjoy the book! 🙂

  2. I’ve had this on hold at the library for quite awhile now. My impatience may lead me to just go out and buy it. Glad to hear that it’s a good read 🙂

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