books · inspiration · introversion · personal experiences

Quiet – The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking (Book Review/Summary)

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Deeply insightful and liberating book.

We technically live in a world where being extroverted is the “ideal.” That being fun and interesting is what you need to do to get friends. That if you are not sociable, then there is something wrong with you.

These the kinds of things people around us chid about. However, the book talks how the ideals are simply not always true.

One thing I found very intriguing is how collaboration can destroy creativity. The book talks about how Steve Wozniak, the co-founder of Apple computers, invented the first commercially available personal computer singlehandedly in his ownsolitude locked up in this office. She also talked about Charles Darwin who created the scientific breakthrough alone.

The book continues to talk about how the more people there are in a brainstorming session, the less ideas there would be; unless the brainstorming session is online. Cain argues that this is mostly because people are held back by the fear of judgement. Online discussions/conversations would theoretically reduce the setbacks.

Cain also mentioned how Warren Buffet, the oracle of Omaha (and my role model, lol), succeeds in the stock market when most people fail. In general, extroverted people act based on results; they get motivated and make impulsive decisions in order to get a reward. However, introverted people are much more calculated. They do things because of quiet perseverance and love for the things they do. They do not think of results that much. In fact, a lot of studies show that introverted people are less likely to give up on tasks. Just look at Abraham Lincoln! Introverts are also more likely to evaluate situations before jumping into conclusions and make impulsive decisions.

Cain also made a quick connection to Jim Collins book, Good to Great, on the concept of Level 5 Leadership. Cain echoes that leaders of great companies are surprisingly shy, reserved, humble, and not egocentric.

The most interesting part I found in the book was when to be more extroverted than you really are. Let’s face it, at times in this world, we need to conform to society. This includes creating a sense that you are extroverted even though all you want is to snuggle up in bed with a good book. Sometimes you just need to give that great speech or go to this networking event to grow your small business. However, Cain points out that if introverts need to act and create pseudo-extroversion, it is important that it is for things that they value. For example, there is no need to act like a party animal because then they would not be true to themselves. However, giving a speech for women’s rights, for example, is when an introvert and be extroverted for a day. This concept of altering who you are in different situations is called “self-monitoring.” Self-monitoring also includes understanding other people’s points of views when it comes to debatable issues. This, however, is not saying that self-monitoring people don’t have strong principles/beliefs, but it is saying that they are modest and open to other people’s opinions or way of life.

There are a number of people who come across as extroverted but are really introverted. And I am surprised that Guy Kawasaki was one of them.

After the series of “acting” like an extrovert, it is important to keep sane by having restorative niches in which you spend some time being true to who you are. By spending the weekend reading a book, for example.

In the end, the message is, stay true to yourself. Being an introvert is not wrong. We didn’t choose to be introverts, so it’s only our job to make the most of it.

depression · fear and anxiety · inspiration · personal experiences

How to not be Depressed

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I hate summer. Mostly because there’s usually nothing busy going on. Well not entirely. I am in college so I am taking some classes. But let’s be real, classes in the summer are jokes because teachers are tired of 2-3 hour lectures every single day and therefore keep postponing and cancelling exams.

All of you college kids will agree with me that when it comes to school, summer is not that bad. However, for some reason, summers are when I have most of my mental breakdowns. These past few days I have found myself being utterly depressed. I couldn’t sleep at night and wouldn’t want to wake up in the morning. I cry internally but have no reason why. I typically don’t like to watch movies but I found myself watching 4 movies in a row last night because I was so depressed. The same thing happened to me in the summer last year. I was so depressed that I cross stitched for three months straight. At these kinds of moments, my favorite singers are Sia, Adam Lambert, and Evanescence; so yeah I am THAT depressed. The worst part is.. I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHY I AM DEPRESSED.

Then I started to question why I don’t get that much depressed when it’s not summer. This is when I formulated my hypothesis. How to not be Depressed: DO SOMETHING THAT’LL STOP YOU FROM SLEEPING. 

When I think about it, I don’t get depressed on normal school semesters because I have to wake up at 7AM everyday, take like 18 credit hours all at once, be active in several student organizations, and work two jobs. This leaves me literally no time to be depressed. Well sure, I don’t get enough time to sleep, but I don’t get enough time to feel sad/depressed/useless either – and somehow I think it’s worth it.

Since I am currently only taking online classes and work at only one job, I basically can sleep however long I want. When I don’t sleep, I draw, write, and just lay down scrolling through social media. Unfortunately, this leaves my brain a lot of time to evaluate how lame I am in life. While doing nothing, I see my friends succeed here and there through Facebook and Instagram. Because I really don’t have anything to do, I would unconsciously spend time comparing myself to others and losing faith in whatever I am doing. This is also when I replay all those embarrassing and socially awkward moments I had 4 years ago. Yup, this is also when I think about how much I hate people and how much I hate myself. Viola, you get depression. On normal, busy school days, I won’t give a damn about anything because I would have like 10 essays due in two days.

Solution? I think the solution to this is just to keep yourself busy, do fun things, share them to people you love, laugh about them, get tired because of them, and then sleep tight at night. Wake up in the morning and repeat. I think getting the right amount of responsibility from somebody else is good to keep humans busy and away from dark thoughts. To be honest, the only reason why I haven’t killed myself is because I have my parents and two siblings who are counting on me. Also, I think that there are also some benefits in doing difficult projects with challenging deadlines. They don’t only increase knowledge, intelligence, and skill, but they would also make you forget that you are in fact depressed.

I guess what I’m trying to say is: don’t let leave your brain vacant because if it is, anxiety and depression will take over.

Thoughts on my hypothesis?