I decided to read this book after watching the author’s TED talk… Honestly I was expecting something more theoretical, perhaps a psychological description of introverts, what makes them special, how they contribute to society, why our extrovert based society would need them etc etc. And all of those subjects the book covered one way or another.
But what struck me most was the definition of the “highly sensitive” person. Before reading this book, I believed I was a relatively extrovert person that just wanted (needed?) to have his quiet, introvert moments too. But while reading it some things started to connect. It’s true sometimes I prefer to stay in instead of going out, no matter how good the company is. Even after going out, even after having great fun, I feel I need some time to cool off alone (maybe that’s a reason I’m drawn to meditation?). A musical piece can overwhelm me sometimes, not because it’s sad but because it’s beautiful, intense. I was awed when I read even the sensitivity to coffee factor. It is a physical, neurological characteristic, people are born more sensitive than others to stimulation. Be it art, music, emotions.
It was an eye-opening book for me. Ok sometimes I found it a little…self-gratifying (it gives you the impression that introverts are kind of special, blessed with higher perception of the environment, more spiritual/thoughtful in a way) whereas extroverts tend to be more reckless, seeking company to cover their inability to enjoy themselves when alone, with their happiness dependant on other people (compared to introverts who can find pleasure simply by themselves and a good book). I also enjoyed reading about recent neuroscientific and fMRI experiments and the fascinating insights they offer on free will and personality…makes you wonder what the future holds for our understanding of the brain!
5 stars, it really made an impression on me.
If you are an introvert go ahead read this book. It’s about you, for you. Indulge yourself and you will learn things on the way. If you are an extrovert read it also. See how you compare. See the world from an introvert’s eye. Chances are you will like this book. If not, there must be an introvert in your life that will.