Introverts often get a bad rap in our culture. While extroverts are generally described as outgoing, assertive, easygoing, and friendly; for introverts we reserve words like loner, shy, reserved, and withdrawn. We tend to place more value on extroversion, and parents can tend to feel that there’s something amiss with a quiet child. I think it behooves us to be curious as to why this is so. Some cultures place a high value on contemplative natures and less on emotional expressiveness, traits very much in line with our definition of introversion. So it’s interesting to note that other people see things a lot differently when it comes to a continuum of socialness. And with that in mind, we can consider becoming more open-minded about the introverts among us, and begin to think of extroversion and introversion as the yin and yang of social presentation. We can value introspection as we value gregariousness; and we can value reserve as we do expansiveness. I love the life of the party – who doesn’t? But when the party’s over, I prefer the quiet one.