Books about introverts and extroverts

15 Best Books for Introverts for 2021

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Published: February 23, 2021 Updated: August 26, 2022

Published: 02/23/2021 Updated: 08/26/2022

Introverted people are quiet, sometimes shy, and thrive on alone time. Our fast-paced society, however, can tend to favor extroverted, outgoing people who are more active in their social circles. If you’re an introverted person, you likely have had at least a few people tell you to “just get out there!”

But extrovert strategies don’t work for introverts, and introverts have their own strengths to tap into. Whether you’re looking for a push out of your comfort zone or want to understand yourself better, here are some of the best books for introverts.

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Books For Introverts Who Want to Understand Their Introvert Selves

You don’t always have to change to adapt to an extroverted world, but understanding your introversion is one way to help better prepare yourself for the world around you. These books are to help you realize your strengths and identify where you can grow.

1. The Introvert Advantage: How Quiet People Can Thrive in an Extrovert World, by Marti Olsen Laney, Psy.D.

If you’re energized by alone time or thrive in situations on your own, you’re an introvert, and you have a great tool at your disposal. There’s often a lot of pressure for introverts to not be introverted, but Laney argues that introverts have unique skills that often just need a bit of practical tweaking to help them take advantage of their skills.

2. Introvert Power: Why Your Inner Life Is Your Hidden Strength, by Laurie Helgoe Ph.D.

Our fast-paced culture tends to celebrate extroversion. Dr. Helgoe, however, says that when introverts claim their power for themselves, they’re able to live fuller, more sincere lives.

Dr. Helgoe offers advice on how to build a slower tempo into your life, claim your space, and embrace your inner power.

3. Quiet: The Power of Introverts in A World That Can’t Stop Talking, by Susan Cain

This New York Times-bestseller is considered a must-read for anyone who’s introverted or dealing with introverts. Author Susan Cain researched the rise of the “Extrovert Ideal” throughout U.S. history and argues that we don’t appreciate introverts the way we should, especially in business.

It’s not all talk either; Cain highlights successful introverts, from high-sales businessmen to energetic public speakers, to see how they use their introversion with power, not defeat.

4. The Awakened Introvert: Practical Mindfulness Skills to Help You Maximize Your Strengths and Thrive in a Loud and Crazy World, by Arnie Kozak, Ph.D.

Extroverts get their energy from interaction with others. But introverts get energy from reflection and solitude. It only makes sense then, that introverts would benefit greatly from a regular mindfulness practice.

Dr. Kozak takes readers through this step-by-step workbook to help introverts create a daily practice that keeps them steady and mentally healthy.

5. Quiet Influence: The Introvert’s Guide to Making a Difference Paperback, by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, Ph.D.

This book explores the six strengths of introverts and helps readers understand how well they’re using their strengths through a series of practical applications, question prompts, and more.

Dr. Kahnweiler does this through her Quiet Influence Quotient, a quiz introverts can take to better understand where they stand on the introverted spectrum.

6. The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You, by Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D.

While not all introverts are highly sensitive, there is a lot of overlap. If you find yourself overwhelmed easily, craving alone time every day, or just simply more sensitive than your peers, you’re likely a highly sensitive person.

Dr. Aron lines out a series of tools and exercises to help you identify what triggers your sensitivity and provides practical applications to help you get through the day. If you find that you’re introverted because you’re sensitive, then this guide might be for you.

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Books for Introverted Parents & Children

Whether you’re an introverted parent or raising an introverted child, here are a few books to help you better understand yourself and your child so you can both live fulfilling, truthful lives.

7. Quiet Power: The Secret Strengths of Introverted Kids, by Susan Cain

After writing the original Quiet, Cain quickly discovered adults aren’t the only ones who need help understanding their introversion. Quiet Power is written for kids, parents, and teachers, and provides examples of introverted kids adapting to their world as well as tips and discussion prompts.

8. The Hidden Gifts of the Introverted Child: Helping Your Child Thrive in an Extroverted World, by Marti Olsen Laney Psy.D.

Shy children are often met with concern and worry. Are they adjusted enough? Do they have enough friends? Will they have all the development they need to succeed in the world and live a fulfilling life?

Dr. Laney thinks they do – they just need someone to recognize their unique talents. Introverted children are in touch with their emotions, creative problem solvers, and love to learn. This book is great for parents who want to better understand their children and help them grow in ways that benefit the special touch they bring to the world.

9. Introverted Mom: Your Guide to More Calm, Less Guilt, and Quiet Joy, by Jamie C. Martin

Moms have a lot on their plate. Family life can be loud and overwhelming, especially for introverted mothers craving some quiet. It can be easy to feel guilty that you’re “not like other moms,” or maybe you feel overwhelmed by your role as a mother. Regardless, Martin is here with stories from other introverted mothers to tell you that you’re not alone. She also offers practical advice and inspiring quotes from other famous introverts; Jane Austen, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and more.

A good read for those looking to embrace their introverted selves and know they’re not alone in motherhood.

10. The Highly Sensitive Child: Helping Our Children Thrive When The World Overwhelms Them, by Elaine N. Aron Ph.D.

Whether you’re a fellow highly sensitive person (HSP) or find yourself the parent of one, this book is here to help you and your child thrive in an environment not always suited to them.

Highly sensitive children, when parented incorrectly, can become act out or be labeled as problem children. But much like HSPs, carefully considering their strengths can help them bloom, and understanding their weaknesses can help them grow. The Highly Sensitive Child is a guidebook for parents who want to see their children grow into healthy adults.

Books to Inspire Introverts

Maybe you’re looking for a push. Maybe you’re ready to step out of your comfort zone. If that’s you, then take a look at these books from authors who decided to do the same thing.

11. Sorry I’m Late, I Didn’t Want to Come: One Introvert’s Year of Saying Yes, by Jessica Pan

Maybe you’re proud of being an introvert, but you’re also looking to see how you can challenge yourself. Or at the very least, you want to see how it might look like for one introvert to force themselves to be extroverted for a time.

That’s what Jessica Pan, a self-proclaimed introvert, decided to do for one year. Even if you can’t bring yourself to do some of the things she does (travel alone, make friends on the road, perform stand-up comedy) you might still get a kick out of this light-hearted, fun read.

12. The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin

If you’re feeling caged in by your life, you might be a lot like Gretchen Rubin.  After an epiphany on a bus, she realized she wasn’t focusing on the things that brought her joy anymore. So, over the course of a year, she tried everything she could to find happiness again.

While Ruben may not be an introvert exactly, other introverts might find comfort in her tale, and be encouraged to pursue the things in their own life they actually enjoy.

Do social interactions feel challenging? Get help from a supportive therapist. BetterHelp has over 20,000 licensed therapists who provide convenient and affordable online therapy. BetterHelp starts at $60 per week. Complete a brief questionnaire and get matched with the right therapist for you.

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Books For Introverts at Work

Let’s face it: most career advice isn’t helpful to introverts. Talking to strangers, speaking up at meetings, and generally being more outgoing aren’t easy skills for quiet people. You’re not without options, however, and these books can help you use your introverted skills to climb the corporate ladder.

13. Surrounded by Idiots: The Four Types of Human Behavior and How to Effectively Communicate with Each in Business (and in Life), by Thomas Erikson

Communicating with others is, at the best of times, difficult. At the worst of times, it’s frustrating for all involved. Thomas Erikson realized this after a meeting with an entrepreneur that left him befuddled and overall confused about how unproductive the entire conversation was. He began studying how different people communicate and what you can do to effectively understand each other.

For introverts who have a hard time understanding others, this is a helpful tool.

14. Networking for People Who Hate Networking: A Field Guide for Introverts, the Overwhelmed, and the Underconnected, by Devora Zack

There’s nothing wrong with being introverted, but career goals can tend to favor those who are far more outgoing than you might be. That’s not meant to discourage you, Devora Zack says, however. Rather, it’s about understanding your strengths and playing to them in a way that is both truthful to you and aligns you with your goals. Networking is a difficult skill for most, but this book is here to help.

15. The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together, by Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, Ph.D.

History is full of successful opposite pairs. Introvert/extrovert pairs are responsible for art, history, and music. What makes these partnerships successful, Dr. Kahnweiler argues, is not emphasizing their differences, but understanding what it takes to get results.

If you need to see how introverts work with others or want validation that introverts can be successful, then this is a good read.

When to See a Therapist for Introversion

For most, there’s nothing wrong with being introverted. But if your shyness is keeping you from accomplishing goals or inhibiting your life, then it may be time to find a therapist. They can assist you with finding coping mechanisms to get through your day-to-day and give you the tools you need to live life to the fullest. If you’ve never looked for a therapist, directories are a great place to start.

Additional Resources

Education is just the first step on our path to improved mental health and emotional wellness. To help our readers take the next step in their journey, Choosing Therapy has partnered with leaders in mental health and wellness. Choosing Therapy may be compensated for referrals by the companies mentioned below.

BetterHelp (Online Therapy) – A therapist can teach you skills that will enable you to better cope with difficult situations. BetterHelp has over 20,000 licensed therapists who provide convenient and affordable online therapy. BetterHelp starts at $60 per week. Complete a brief questionnaire and get matched with the right therapist for you. Get Started – Receive help from a mental health professional. The standard plan includes a weekly 45 minute video session, unlimited text messaging between sessions, and self-guided activities like journaling. Recently, they added Yoga videos. Get Started

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10 Life-Changing Books for Introverts

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If you are one of the 30-50% of introverts trying to thrive in an extroverted culture, here are ten books that will give you the tools you need to succeed in your work, social, and love lives.

This book is my absolute favorite on the topic of introversion. Cain explores the history of personality in the United States to find out when and how extroversion became the cultural ideal. She digs through scientific studies to explain the biology of introversion. Finally, she offers sound wisdom to introverts trying to figure out how to live, love, parent, and work in a culture that favors extroverts.

This book is a manual for how to survive and thrive in the extroverted world of work. It offers practical tips on how to become a confident public speaker and effective team leader, ace a job interview, and succeed as an entrepreneur. There are also a few chapters on finding personal happiness and supporting introverted friends and children.

This is the perfect book for introverts who want to stand in their own power instead of surviving by imitating extroverted power. Introversion comes with its own set of strengths and this book will help you harness those strengths to live a more fulfilling, productive life. With chapters like “Alone Is Not a Four-Letter Word” and “The Right to Retreat,” you know this book was written by someone who gets it.

They say love is a battlefield, but for many the battle begins long before those three magic words are ever spoken, perhaps even long before the first date. From speed dating to bar hopping to party mingling (online dating may be the only exception here), the love game is rigged in favor of extroverts. This handy little book provides introverts with strategies to successfully meet people at parties, ease anxiety on the first date, and navigate the world of Internet dating.

This book helps introverts harness their unique strengths and minimize their weaknesses through mindfulness meditations and cognitive behavioral techniques. Included are chapters on navigating the social landscape, celebrating solitude, and practicing self-care in a busy world.


The word “charisma” usually brings to mind someone gregarious, smooth, and confident. Introverts can certainly be confident, but we often struggle with the first two. This book offers advice to introverts who want to master the social game without sacrificing their innate personality.

Many of the people making the biggest difference in the world today are introverts. They influence the world not by force of personality but by harnessing “The Six Strengths of Quiet Influence” outlined in this book. Also included is the “Quiet Influence Quotient” or QIQ, an evaluation to help you determine how much you are currently employing the six strengths.

This is another great book for introverts who want to utilize their unique strengths to succeed in all areas of life. It dispels some of the common myths about introverts and offers advice on building healthy relationships, parenting without losing your mind, socializing without wearing yourself out, and working in an extroverted environment.

Lots of books have been written to help introverts succeed at work, but this is the only one I know of written specifically for entrepreneurs. Marketing, sales, and networking are jobs that introverts usually try to avoid, but if you’re a business owner, those are all skills you’ll have to master, no matter what your personality type. This book will equip you with the tools you need to succeed.

For years, Maureen “Marzi” Wilson has been doodling cartoons about the introvert life and posting them on her website. Now, her amazing doodles are about to become a book. Look for this one December 2016.

5 great books for introverts

If you prefer a cozy evening alone to a party in a large company, then most likely you are an introvert. Contrary to stereotypes, an introvert is not necessarily a modest quiet person. It’s just that people with such a psychotype get tired of communication more often and faster – with colleagues, shop assistants, call center operators, or even with friends.

The world is geared towards extroverts: doing school assignments in groups, speaking to audiences at universities, collaborative briefings of ideas at work, open spaces in the office, and even daily subway rides in the crowd. How can introverts live in the age of constant communication? The books will give you the answer.

We have selected 5 books that will help introverts accept themselves and explain why not wanting to be oversociable is completely normal. You will find a funny comic book about “a quiet girl in a noisy world”, a useful sci-pop with exercises and the story of an introverted girl who nevertheless decided to leave her comfort zone.

1. Introverts. How to use your personality traits

Kane S.

Susan Cain is a negotiator. She taught this skill to different people, from top managers and TV presenters to college graduates. In his book, Kane proves that introverts are just as capable as extroverts of building communication and coping with complex tasks. The book will introduce you to the most famous and successful introverts in history, help you find your strengths and explain how to succeed while remaining yourself.

2. The power of introverts. How to use your oddities to your advantage

Leken S.

What do you do when meetings feel like hell and discussions with co-workers are overwhelming? Learn more about your strengths, and turn your weaknesses into a tool for achieving success. The book of Sylvia Leuken, the world's expert on extraversion and introversion, will help with this. In the guide, you'll find a list of the benefits of being an introvert, tips for raising an introverted child, tips, and simple exercises to help you deal with communication stress.

3. Be an introvert. The story of a quiet girl in a noisy world

Tang D.

Artist Debbie Tang is an introvert. In her comic, she tells a personal story about how to get along in a noisy world: go to parties and dates, work in an office and study. These small and kind stories will show you how to accept your need for solitude and learn to love the world.

4. Supersensitive nature. How to Succeed in a Mad World

Eyron E.

Among introverts, there are often hypersensitive personalities, or HSPs - people who are especially sensitive to what is happening. Psychotherapist Elaine Ayron has been researching this psychotype for many years and now shares her findings in this book. The author talks about the leading character traits of hypersensitive natures and about ways to solve problems that seem like a trifle to ordinary people. You can also find useful tips and exercises in the book. They will reduce anxiety and help you better adapt to the modern world.

5. Sorry, I'm late.

Actually I didn't want to come

Pan J.

For some people, life seems to be made up of accidents. Some talk to someone in the park and get their dream job. Others meet their love in a restaurant queue. All this is definitely not about Jessica Pan, the author and main character of this book. At least, the girl is sure of this since childhood, because at any opportunity she avoids communicating with people. But one day, Jessica decided to overcome her fears, try herself as an extrovert and find out what is the secret of their success. The experiment lasted a year - and changed the girl beyond recognition.

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9 books every introvert should read

September 9, 2017Books

If you are an introvert and love to read, there is sure to be something in this collection for your taste.




Genius mode. Daily routine of great people, Mason Curry

Curry talks about the unusual habits of famous artists, writers, scientists and other creative personalities and helps to understand that we all have our own oddities and this should not be ashamed. For example, did you know that Stravinsky could compose music only if he was sure that no one could hear him, and in order to overcome a creative crisis, he stood on his head? Or that Sartre chewed stimulant pills every day at ten times the recommended amount?

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2. “Introverts. How to use your personality, Susan Kane

Kane helps you understand how to fulfill yourself and your ambitions in a world where extroversion is valued. Her book has become an international bestseller, with more than two million copies sold worldwide.

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3. “Drift. Inspiring Story of an Inventor Shipwrecked on the High Ocean by Stephen Callahan

Callahan was wrecked and spent 76 days alone on the high seas, struggling to survive. National Geographic named Drift one of the 100 best adventure books of all time.

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4. Project Happiness, Gretchen Rubin

One day Gretchen Rubin was riding in a bus and suddenly realized that she was wasting her time on things that were not really important. After that, she decided to figure out what happiness is and how to find it. In her book, she shares wise advice and scientific research to help you take control of your life and become happier.

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5. “Supersensitive nature. How to Succeed in a Mad World, Elaine Ayron

Based on scientific research and hundreds of interviews, Ayron shares how hypersensitive people can better understand themselves and live fulfilling lives. This book explains why some people need to spend time alone and why the world around them sometimes makes them feel overwhelmed.

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6. The Martian, Andy Weier

Mark Watney is left alone on Mars as the rest of the crew rush to evacuate due to a sandstorm. Now he is forced to survive alone without a livelihood and the ability to contact the Earth. This book will appeal to all fans of science fiction.

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7. "Norwegian Forest" by Haruki Murakami

This touching coming-of-age story may appeal to introverts for its thoughtful view of the protagonist's world and Murakami's melancholy language.

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8. "The Advantages of Introverts", Marty Laney

Laney debunks common myths about introverts and describes their strengths. The book also contains practical advice that will help introverts understand themselves and better navigate the world of extroverts.

9. "Me and Earl and the Dying Girl" by Jessie Andrews

Greg Gaines is an ordinary teenager who tries not to stand out and, together with his friend Earl, makes parodies of classic films. His life changes when he befriends a girl with cancer. The book was also made into a film of the same name.

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