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To-day is my "21st" birthday. I am enjoying reading an excellent book, "Quiet" by Susan Cain that Ella bought me.

34 million Canadians are addicted to their cell phones and on average they check their phones 150 times a day seven days a week, 365 days a year. Sure hard to forge meaningful connections in an increasing digital and impersonal world.

No time to be alone with your thoughts to just contemplate the raison d'etre of your life. In society we tend to focus on being social and being accepted by our hundreds of our invisible friends on Face Book.

We have been taught to believe that those who are extroverts are successful, bright, talented and the envy of their introverted friends. Adjectives such as magnetic stunning, forceful and energetic are in fashion. Attributes such as duty, work ethic, honour, morals, manners and integrity are not considered cool for many people.

Well folks it ainít necessary so. Check it out that many of our most prominent people in society have been introverts. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Michael Dell, Steve Wozniak, Warren Buffett, Al Gore ,Gandhi and Moses.

Moses was not the brash talkative type of leader as portrayed in the movie, "The Ten Commandments". He spoke with a stutter and considered himself inarticulate.

When God first appeared to him in the form of a burning bush, Moses was employed by his father-in-law; he was not even ambitious enough to own his flock of sheep.

When God revealed to Moses his role as liberator of the Jews Moses did not leap at the opportunity. " Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh?" "I have never been eloquent, I am slow of speech and tongue." When paired up with his eloquent, extroverted brother, Aaron, Moses became the brilliant ghost speech writer who worked his wonders quietly behind the scene.

Many of my very bright students are introverts who simply choose to learn by themselves not wanting/needing to attract undue attention to themselves. I still remember two brothers, with Chinese heritage, who I had the good fortune to council. Andrew the older of the two averaged 99.7% on his best six grade twelve courses and his brother Calvin scored an amazing 100% while taking 8 courses. Their hard work paid of with both of them being rewarded the University of Western Ontario Presidentís prestigious scholarship for full tuition, books and residence for four years.

The two boys described themselves as just being average, quiet kids who diligently did their homework. TV or video games were looked on as boring with the boys instead focusing on beating their parents in games of chess. They were not hockey or football players preferring to focus on their studies to achieve excellence. Wonder of wonders the boys even enjoyed to read just for fun.

Andrew and Calvin epitomized my recipe for successful students. Write it down and practice it daily. Good ability, good work ethic, good willpower, respectful, patient and the ability to embrace positive change.

Please do not think of introversion as something that needs to be cured. If your children are quiet, help them make peace with new situations and people but otherwise let them be themselves.. Show them that you are delighted in their originality.. Donít expect them to be part of the gang. Never ever compare your childrenís strengths and weaknesses. Each of our children are diamonds and we as parents should encourage them to be themselves. The trick is to have our children know who and what they are. Take the time to show them that your love has no limitations.

Please take the time to read the excellent book, "Quiet" . Shh, it could help guide you and your childrenís lives to a more fulfilling future.

Len Lesser is an education career counselor. Your comments are welcome. lenlesser@hotmail.com

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com