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The Introvert's Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World [Paperback]

Sophia Dembling
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

Dec 4 2012
For anyone who loved Susan Cain’s Quiet, comes this practical manifesto sharing the joys of introversion…

This clever and pithy book challenges introverts to take ownership of their personalities...with quiet strength. Sophia Dembling asserts that the introvert’s lifestyle is not “wrong” or lacking, as society or extroverts would have us believe. Through a combination of personal insights and psychology, The Introvert’s Way helps and encourages introverts to embrace their nature, to respect traits they may have been ashamed of and reframe them as assets.

You’re not shy; rather, you appreciate the joys of quiet. You’re not antisocial; instead, you enjoy recharging through time alone. You’re not unfriendly, but you do find more meaning in one-on-one connections than large gatherings.

By honoring what makes them unique, this astute and inspiring book challenges introverts to “own” their introversion, igniting a quiet revolution that will change how they see themselves and how they engage with the world.

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Review

“In this thought-provoking treatise on the quieter types, Dembling, the blogger behind Psychology Today’s “The Introvert’s Corner,” proposes a wholesale rethinking of what it means to be an introvert…. Dembling’s account is refreshingly candid and straightforward—“I am an introvert,” she writes, “And there’s not a damn thing wrong with me.”
-Publishers Weekly
 
“Unlike Quiet, it not only provides scientific and cultural background but also practical tips and a thorough-note of complete understanding of the introvert’s nature. An introvert myself, I have never read a book that I have so truly felt myself in.” 
-Psych Central
 
“Dembling urges introverts to embrace their need for solitude, reflection, and regeneration with no apologies. It's what makes us who we are.”
-Cleveland Plain Dealer

About the Author

Sophia Dembling writes The Introvert’s Corner blog for Psychology Today. Her previous books include The Yankee Chick’s Survival Guide to Texas, and she has published hundreds of articles and essays in magazines, newspapers, and websites.


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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Validation Oct. 18 2013
By JCM
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book helped me in validating my emotions. With all the noise in my life, I lost touch with who I am .... an introvert. If you feel misunderstood by the extroverts around you, read this book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  100 reviews
85 of 87 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Helpful & Insightful Dec 4 2012
By Simply Luxurious - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
As a professed introvert, understanding the beauty of being someone who prefers quiet over chaos more often than not has become an interest of mine. And upon writing the post shared this past February about embracing one's introversion, I was pleasantly surprised to discover many fellow introverts.

Upon discovering Sophia Dembling's new book The Introvert's Way, I had the fortunate opportunity to review a copy before it became available (released today - Dec. 4th). While similar to Susan Cain's Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can't Stop Talking, Dembling book is quite validating (". . . introverts can perhaps lay claim to high levels of creativity"), but at the same time Dembling, herself an introvert, offers accessible advice on how to interact successfully and create quality relationships with others that may be far more extroverted than we understand.

With chapters titled: What Quiet Says, Introverts are Not Failed Extroverts, Loneliness is a State of Mind and Mistakes Introverts Make, it is authentic based on her own experiences, helpful with its relatable situations that you may have thought you were the only one experiencing and wise on how to deal with those who may not understand. After all, it's okay if you enjoy your own company more often than not (in fact, it's a very good thing), and once you understand that this idea that extroversion is better and the American way is all a myth, you too will hopefully breathe a sigh of relief and go about accepting yourself for exactly who you are, being comfortable living in a way that works for you. Needless to say, I highly recommend this book.
47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Way To Be an Introvert March 22 2013
By Deb - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
The Table of Contents is what sold me on this book. In and off itself, it captures the challenges, quirks, and perks of being an introvert:
* Introverts Unite
* What Would Jung Say?
* The Great American Racket
* Science Says We're Not Necessarily Shy
* Born to Be Mild
* Quiet Riot
* Just Intense Enough
* The Slow Train of Thought
* The Internal Flame
* What Quiet Says
* The Fertile Void
* I Like to Watch
* Energy In, Energy Out
* "We Didn't Know You Were an Introvert, We Just Thought You Were a Bitch."
* Magic Words to Plug Energy Drains
* Introverts Are Not Failed Extroverts
* I Like People...Just Not All People All the Time
* Don't Call Us, We'll Call...Well, No, Maybe We Won't
* We Gotta Fight for Our Right Not to Party
* Loneliness Is a State of Mind
* The Happiness Bias
* Who's a Narcissist?
* Turning the Extrovert Advantage Upside Down
* The Party Predicament
* The Bathroom and Other Party Survival Skills
* Hell Is a Cocktail Party
* Fact 1: Some People Are Boring, Fact 2: You Are Not Obligated to Listen to Them
* Saying Yes When You Want to Say No (and Vice Versa)
* Extroversion in a Bottle
* There Must Be Fifty Ways to Leave a Party
* Life Through Introvert Eyes
* "It'll Be Fun!" They Say, But We Beg to Differ
* Fun, Introvert Style
* Friend, "Friends," Acquaintances, and Why Bother?
* The Online Extrovert
* The Happy Noise of Extroversion
* Because They Love You
* Itty-Bitty Introverts
* Love Us, but Leave Us Alone (Sometimes)
* I F#&$ing Hate It When They Say That
* A Team of One
* Introvert Feats of Derring-Do
* First, Leave the House and Other Tips for Making Friends
* Mind Fullness to Mindfulness
* Mistakes Introverts Make
* Affirmations for Introverts
* Middle Ground
* C'mon People Now, Smile on Your Brother

Not surprisingly, the rest of the book is just as insightful, witty, and engaging. In addition to exploring, explaining, and validating the introvert's way (which really is way cool once you can fully appreciate it), it helps introverts "calibrate our need for solitude with our need for human interaction." (p. 70) And, to that end, the author offers some great affirmations (pp. 177-179):
*Staying home is doing something.
*My presence is a gift, not a requirement.
*I like who I like.
*Listening to bores is not my job.
*Managing my energy is a favor to myself and everyone around me.
*Saying no can be a kindness.
*I can love other people and still not be responsible for their good time.
*Just because I'm quiet doesn't mean I have nothing to say.
*Putting on my dog and pony show is optional.
*A ringing phone is not a mandate.
*I know what I need better than anyone else.
*Other people's desire for me to participate is not more important than my desire not to participate.

If you're an introvert, you'll likely feel understood, inspired, and deeply entertained by this book. The book's a breeze to read through--the only challenge might be finding a quiet spot in the noisy world where you can soak it all in. (And, of course, there's no need to answer any phones while doing so.)
39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inside the mind of an introvert Dec 30 2012
By Zachary Goldman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was introduced to this book after reading an article by Sophia Dembling in the Wall Street Journal on December 14, 2012 entitled "All I Want for Christmas Is...A Little Space," so I picked up a copy of "The Introvert's Way" in hopes of learning more about introverts like myself. I was not disappointed.

Ms. Dembling immediately dives into shattering the common misconceptions on introverts. Distinguishing shyness from introversion, she states "shy people are scared of socializing. Introverts just aren't always interested in it." She separates introverts into "shy" and "not shy" categories, shredding the common misconception of all introverts being the former. Because of society's preference for extroversion over introversion, a lot of the "not shy" introverts are able to give off the impression of being an extrovert when they really aren't. Ms. Dembling even cites a study that shows it's a lot easier for introverts to act as extroverts than it is for extroverts to act as introverts, perhaps because introverts are more experienced at putting on--as Ms. Dembling refers to it--the "dog-and-pony show."

Moving beyond the comparisons between extroverts and introverts, this book does teach a lot to introverts about their own nature. She spends a bit of time talking about what introverts like to do, such as hiking, biking, kayaking, coffee shops, reading, walking, yoga, one-on-one conversations with good friends, writing, and other activities that encourage concentration and solitude. I'm personally interested in trying out her suggestion on mountain climbing, so perhaps other readers will be encouraged to try some of the other suggestions that Ms. Dembling says introverts like to do.

Most of all, as a self-proclaimed introvert, I was already comfortable with my own nature. However, Ms. Dembling's book made me even more content with myself. She writes that extroverts and introverts are better off letting each other be themselves, since we won't be able to change each others' nature anyway (introversion will probably stick with you throughout your entire life, she writes in the aforementioned Wall Street Journal article). Since nobody can change an introvert's way, we may as well try to understand it. This book is a good place to start.
48 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Introverts -- Buy two copies of this book Dec 5 2012
By Victoria L. Brown - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful book for the Introvert in your life. If that Introvert is _you_, consider getting two copies: one to read and one to share with friends, co-workers, and family members.

It's a light read, but well written and well organized. My favorite chapter, "Don't Call Us, We'll Call... Well, No, Maybe We Won't" describes many Introvert's love/hate relationship with phone calls. We may love the person on the other end of the line (Hi Mom!) but we hate communicating by telephone. (It may not just be Introverts who feel this way. According to Neilsen, in 2008 people were sending or receiving more texts on mobile "phones" than phone calls.)
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Short, sharp, and funny March 22 2013
By Jeff Kelleher - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Once in a rare while, you come across a book that you can give to family, friends, spouses, or lovers and say, "If you really want to understand me, read this." Most of the time, expecting them to actually read the thing is an imposition. They had better have a large investment in you.

Here, the book is such quick and funny reading that the imposition is slight. The payoff, though, is large. They will stop feeling offended when you just want to closet yourself and read; stop calling you antisocial for not wanting to go to a big loud party; appreciate more the ruminative insight that you have to offer. You, on your side, will be reminded that you owe them some compromises in return. For a divided extrovert/introvert couple or family, this is better than just about any therapy you could attend.

This is the latest in the recent gush of introvert-extolling books. Chonologically, it was issued after Susan Cain's "Quiet" (reviewed by me elsewhere), but clearly most of it was written and posted earlier on author Dembling's blog. The Cain book is more elaborate and more scholarly, but there are so many similarities that it seems as if Cain just took this work and expanded it.

Introverts are a quiet bunch, no better and no worse than extroverts, just different. But if you extroverts push us too far in demanding that we be like you we will, referring to a famous rant by the introverted "Twilight" actress, "go all Kristen Stewart on your asses."
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