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Introvert Power: Why Your Inner Life Is Your Hidden Strength

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  4,016 ratings  ·  347 reviews

"Vivid and engaging."—Publishers Weekly, starred review

Embrace the Power Inside You

It's no wonder that introversion is making headlines—half of all Americans are introverts. But if that describes you—are you making the most of your inner strength?

Psychologist and introvert Laurie Helgoe unveils the genius of introversion. Introverts gain energy and power through reflection and solitude. Our culture, however, is g


Kindle Edition, 321 pages
Published February 1st 2013 by Sourcebooks (first published July 1st 2008)
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This book describes my inner life so well and so compassionately that it feels as if I finally find myself defended and acquitted before a jury (and culture) of extroverts. It makes me feel valued for my strength of a contemplative, observational life rather than being misjudged as snobbish, socially withdrawn, or too bookish. I have often felt as if I have to make excuses for not having active, outgoing, socially noisy plans for the weekend/holiday/vacation. I get weary of Facebook's judgmental ...more
May 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If I could have given this book ten stars, I would have. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say this is the best nonfiction book I have ever read. If you are an introvert, or know an introvert, this book is a must read. It's like the author has been living inside my head for my entire life. I can't begin to explain how throughly and utterly she gets it. What's so surprising is we comprise a little more than half of the population! I always thought I was in some small minority. This book teac ...more
Apr 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I wish I'd been given this book 20 years ago. I've been fighting this thing called "introversion" as if it was a disease - wrong approach, I see it now. Not that I ever tried to fit in...but I just kept feeling that I "should".

This is not a self-help book. There are no formulas. This is about acceptance, thriving and celebrating who you are. I am completely and truly amazed at what I read because I kept thinking "hey, that's me" and I said it in nearly every page.

The author blames A
Jan 29, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
may be my rating needs some further explaination; because if this book is mainly about getting introverts to be better connected to their inner feelings and needs, then it may be rated as a five or at least four starts book..but I guess that most intoverts already spend more than enough time reflecting, .....and if that book is about making them feel that they are not alone, and not even a minority and that almost 50% of population (according to the author) are intoverts so its more or less norm ...more
Jun 08, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I owe a ton of thank-yous to the author, Laurie Helgoe. This book surprised me by being more than what I wanted out of a "self-help book" about my introversion - it helped me to understand myself and it helped me to love myself better. I never fully understood why I felt bored or withdrawn during some conversations, why a rush of activity and movement seems to flood me so badly I actually panic, or why I crave alone time a lot, apparently more than most people (aka more than I should... And worst of all, why I feel so p ...more
Paloma Etienne
Well, I found the magic of this book at the beginning, but to be honest I'd say that two thirds of the book are really redundant, I'm sorry to be so blunt and harsh about it. Enough said about introverts not liking to go to parties, mate, it did my head in. However, I didn’t skip those last two thirds because between dismayed faint spells when reading the repetitive narrative I got hooked again on a smart idea.

Now, the book does dally on a certain whiff of self-help babble, grrr, but the core o
Dec 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who is not bored by their own company, lives inside their head, or thinks the world is mad
If there were more rating stars, I would give them all to this book. For anyone who has wanted to retreat from the hectic pace, blaring noise, assault of advertising, and the "American" culture ceaseless activity - this is the book for you. It was like finding an old friend and myself at the same time.
Helgoe explains that "we have become a culture of 'everybody else' Through our constantly expanding media channels, we can know what people are (supposedly) buying, how people are (supposedly
Nov 27, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quite an informative and enthusiastic book. It is encouraging introversy and explaining to a person what makes an introvert. Certainly useful in case you aren't sure whether you are one or not or have no idea how to deal with your introversy, however less so if you are aware and many of the suggested techniques don't help.

It's a good and useful book, mind you. But one should realise that it should be not about introverts vocalising their opinions and issues but about making our society less ext
Beth A.
Jun 15, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I have mixed feelings about this book. I liked some of the concepts Helgoe focused on, like accepting your introversion and noticing the good things about it. Another idea I thought was valid was that you should be honest when you decline an unwanted invitation. If you make up excuses and say you really want to go, you will get more invitations. I also liked her encouragement to not let yourself be pressured into social events when you will not enjoy them, unless it's necessary, like for work.

Nov 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“While the introvert is reflecting on the question (thinking first), the extrovert takes this as an invitation to fill the void (talking first). As long as the introvert doesn’t interrupt, the extrovert continues to fill the interpersonal space with talk. But as long as the extrovert talks, the introvert can’t think and stays mute. Mute means the invitation is still open, and continued talk assures that the introvert remains mute. By the time the extrovert pauses to ask, the introvert’s head is ...more
Nov 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book had could have been written about me, a lifelong introvert. The author "gets" me. Descriptions, examples, thoughts, and feelings are right on target. Most importantly, I learned that it is okay to be an introvert. My strength is drawn from solitude, the company of one or two people at a time, my pets, my books, my interests. I shouldn't berate myself for not wanting to go to big parties and do "fun" activities that extroverts enjoy. I will be buying my own copy of this book, reading it ...more
Shira and Ari Evergreen
May 23, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: stressed-out people, geeks, introverts
Shelves: ari-faves
Introvert Power is a self-help book about celebrating your introverted identity and recognizing its strengths, instead of trying to be more extroverted and running out of energy, or becoming a hermit - the typical introvert responses to social overstimulation. The title is very appropriate - it's a very empowering message for introverts.

Personally, I'm trying to work on *reducing* my ego and I don't crave power, so some of her rah-rah'ing came off as presumptuous, for me: She makes a
Aug 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the third book about introversion that I have read (the others being The Introvert Advantage: How to Thrive in an Extrovert World and Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking) and my favourite of the three.

Where "Quiet" focuses more on explaining and justifying our character traits and preferences to extroverts, and "Introvert Advantage" focuses on helping us introverts to fit better into our extrovert society, this is a big, juicy permission slip for you to celeb
Oct 31, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I just grabbed this off the new book shelf at the library and will have to admit that I didn't read the whole thing. But I will say that the author understands us introverts. Sample:

Extrovert: How is your day going?
Introvert:(taking the question in, thinking)
Extrovert: I have had the craziest day....
Introvert: Yeah? (distracted from thinking)
Extrovert: Yeah, it all started this morning when...(continues for five minutes or so)....So you're doing well then
If you haven't read many books about personality types, etc., I'd suggest this book as a go-to guide. If you're already familiar with your introverted personality, this book is more of a cheerleader for you to maintain what you like about your introverted life and change what doesn't work. She offers lots of tips for specific situations: parties, work, home life, etc., but what I think she'd really wish for this book to be is an introvert's manifesto to be read by the extroverts of the world.
Mar 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Introverts mental health professionals; anyone interested in human behavior; social psychologists
I am a clinical social worker by profession and also an introvert. I call myself the "anti-social social worker" because I although I do need a certain amount of people time, I prefer and love to read, think and learn by myself. Like some others who've reviewed the book, I related well to this book and felt the author totally gets introverts in a way that I've never seen in other books on the subject. I also related to it because I am a mental health professional and also experienced the feeling ...more
Dec 27, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found myself scanning pages rather than reading. The author shows understanding of introversion with long explanations and examples. If you need validation that you are ok as you are then great read this book.
Initial reaction: Considering I read this in one sitting shortly after being accepted for the galley, I devoured this book. It was a compulsive read and so interesting that I couldn't put it down once I picked it up. So many spot on assertions about introversion - what it is and what it isn't. I definitely appreciated the insight Helgoe had with respect to understanding and building upon the strengths of the introverted mind. It left me with a lot of food for thought because I am very much an introvert a ...more
Annie Palmer
Dec 20, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I enjoy and find it beneficial to myself and others to learn about human behavior. I obviously learned a lot about introverts, but also appreciated the tidbits I picked up about extroverts. As an introvert myself, I appreciate the practical ideas Helgoe presented. They are easily applicable and gives respect to oneself and others. I think it is important to know that about 50 percent of us are introverts, but don't realize it because we are conditioned to be extroverts. Another key point was tha ...more
Aug 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Wow this is a life changing read!!

I have always felt at odds with myself and my ability to act accordingly to society's standards, and have especially felt like there was something wrong with my non-extroverted preferences. And then along came this book and it has given me hope and many reasons to celebrate my true introverted nature.

This book is full of relatable introvert anecdotes, tips for dealing with extroverts, and plenty of ideas on how to grab one's need for refreshing alon
Nov 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Enjoyable read. I was surprised at the data that says the world is about 50 percent introverted. (Even in America?) I've always felt like a minority. For example, not very many people I know go to lunch alone at work. I imagine it's the social pressure to be with company. But I do find solo time in my day is indeed very empowering. This book won't change my behavior much, but it does help me feel more validated.
Shelby M. (Read and Find Out)
3.5 stars. I think this was better than Quiet (which I'll bump down to 3 stars). Very practical, with self-help ideas on how to live your best life as an introvert.
I honestly found this book to be disappointing, which is kinda funny considering tests say I'm about 80% introvert. Although some research was quoted, it seemed like a lot of the book was based on the author's perspective, and this book would probably be much better as a memoir.

The author seems to know what's she's talking about, but she makes way too many generalizations. To think that there would be no books if there were no introverts is silly. I'm sure there are extroverts who li
Will Chou
I loved her attempt to help us with this topic. There was some great effort put in and I loved her research to discover that half of us are statistically introverts and we are not as alone as we think. What I think would be better is if there was more evidence. There was an extensive amount of directions, instructions, and stories but not much reasoning or trustworthy science to back it up.

Now, I want to get to an honest review of the books mentioned.

The one thing I did not like ab
Nov 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: educational
I loved this book. I always knew I was an introvert but I didn't really know the full meaning of the word and how to take advantage of it. I also didn't realize that HALF of people are introverts. I've been looking around a little more since I've read this and I 'get' people a little more now. I REALLY appreciated the insights of this book and fully intend to read it again to remind myself that it's OK that sometimes, going to a party full of people just sounds exhausting, not fun, and that I NE ...more
Mar 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's a rare book that has me highlighting as much as this one did.
Not only is it a validation for those of us who relish and need solitude in which to recharge, but it actually celebrates it.
In a extroverted society (as a whole), it's refreshing to read of other countries and cultures where quiet introversion is more the norm. And how we, here, shouldn't have to apologize for the fact that we are the way we are.

If I had to choose one quote from this book which sums it up
Kathryn Dechairo
Jan 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I love the honesty and truth of this book and was amazed to discover that introverts are not a minority! It was also eye opening to realize just how much negativity we associate with many aspects of introversion. Lots of aha moments in this for me and I'd highly recommend it to anyone who is an introvert or wants to truly understand them.
Reading this book was like reading my biography. I didn't know I was an introvert but I can see now that I am. Knowing what that means, how it looks and what it feels like brings a greater understanding of myself and others and how we function (or don't) together. I think I'll be able to live from now on more comfortably in my own skin, and with those who are not like me, thanks to this book.
Mar 07, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I learned by reading this book that introverts make up over half of the population but we just don't realize it because our society has an extrovert assumption and obsession.

This book was really cool because I remember all the times I would not want to attend something where there were hoardes of people (school dances, parades, graduation ceremonies, etc.) and everyone would say, "You'll regret it if you don't go!" or "Once you get there, you'll have so much fun!" and that was never the case wi
Mar 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I always heard the word introvert growing up, but never thought it had any scientific meaning. You just think of a quiet book mouse nerd who lives with their mom, has no friends, and wears big glasses. And then, a couple years ago, took the time to really look into what an introvert actually is. An introvert is a person who gains energy from being by themselves, and being around others drains it. An extrovert gets drained being alone, and needs to go around others to get energized. It's a real t ...more
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Laurie Anne Helgoe is an American psychologist and author specializing in personality development and the psychology of desire. Helgoe has a private practice in clinical psychology and serves as an assistant clinical professor at the West Virginia University School of Medicine, Charleston Division, supervising and lecturing psychiatric residents.

Raised as the ninth of ten children, she
“I am rarely bored alone; I am often bored in groups and crowds.” 159 likes
“Let's clear one thing up: Introverts do not hate small talk because we dislike people. We hate small talk because we hate the barrier it creates between people.” 148 likes
More quotes…