Now if all this is true, then why are we getting it so wrong?
Why are we setting up our schools this way, and our workplaces?
And why are we making these introverts feel so guilty about wanting to just go off by themselves some of the time?
One answer lies deep in our cultural history.
Western societies, and in particular the U.S., have always favored the man of action over the "man" of contemplation.
But in America's early days, we lived in what historians call a culture of character,
where we still, at that point, valued people for their inner selves and their moral rectitude.
And if you look at the self-help books from this era, they all had titles with things like "Character, the Grandest Thing in the World."
And they featured role models like Abraham Lincoln, who was praised for being modest and unassuming.
Ralph Waldo Emerson called him "A man who does not offend by superiority."
But then we hit the 20th century, and we entered a new culture that historians call the culture of personality.
What happened is we had evolved an agricultural economy to a world of big business.
And so suddenly people are moving from small towns to the cities.
And instead of working alongside people they've known all their lives, now they are having to prove themselves in a crowd of strangers.
So, quite understandably, qualities like magnetism and charisma suddenly come to seem really important.
And sure enough, the self-help books change to meet these new needs and they start to have names like "How to Win Friends and Influence People."
And they feature as their role models really great salesmen.
So that's the world we're living in today. That's our cultural inheritance.