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“In a world that lionizes loudness, it’s actually the quiet and shy among us who are best set up to thrive. Thompson provides an important new way of understanding what it really takes to stand out!”

Cal Newport

New York Times bestselling author of Digital Minimalism and Deep Work

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Inside Shy by Design

Is your shyness holding you back from going after what you want? Are you tired of feeling like you aren’t good enough? Do your self-limiting beliefs sabotage you from speaking up and owning your story?

In Shy by Design, Michael Thompson shares his inspiring journey moving from being riddled with self-doubt due to his shyness and debilitating stutter to becoming a sought-after career coach, university leadership lecturer, and strategic communication advisor for top global business executives and award-winning entrepreneurs.

Packed with actionable strategies and engaging stories, this transformative book will help you embrace the blessing of being underestimated, revolutionize your relationships, and amplify your impact without sacrificing your shy nature.

Thompson’s 12 principles teach you to:

  • Grow your confidence and strengthen communication skills on your own terms and at your own pace.
  • Create meaningful connections and foster a close-knit community that supports personal growth.
  • Lead with quiet conviction that uplifts others on the climb toward success.

The author’s story of navigating the often loud world of sales and communication — while staying true to his shy way of being — will inspire you to embrace your unique strengths and see your perceived weaknesses through a more empowered lens.

Whether you are a recent graduate, a seasoned executive, or someone seeking personal growth, “Shy by Design” will provide you with the motivation and action steps to embrace shyness as the superpower that it is.

Early praise for Shy by Design

"Readers can embrace their quiet side to live happier more fulfilled lives, according to this savvy debut guide by career coach Thompson... he strikes an effective balance between empowering readers to embrace their shyness and encouraging them to venture outside their comfort zones."
"In Shy by Design, author Michael Thompson offers up simple, yet elegant strategies to deploy for overthinking. For those of us who grapple with this malady daily, this book is a gift, a huge relief, and an easier way to be more wonderfully human."
Denise Young
Former Apple VP of HR & Talent and author of When We Are Seen
"In a world that incentivizes and exploits our loudness, Shy by Design is an important call for us to cultivate our quirks, own our story, and value our unique voice."
Julio Vincent Gambuto
Award-winning moviemaker and author of Please Unsubscribe, Thanks!
"An inspiring call-to-action for "quiet types," this book is a must-read for anyone who's ever felt overshadowed in our loud world. Thompson shows how thoughtfulness can be a competitive advantage and offers insight on turning supposed weaknesses into potential strengths. For anyone looking to harness their shy nature as a source of personal and professional power, this book is a game changer."
Melody Wilding, LMSW
Executive coach and bestselling author of Trust Yourself
"In Shy by Design, Michael Thompson provides a transformative guide for introverts. Thompson's wisdom on building meaningful connections and amplifying personal impact is game-changing. A must-read for those who feel their quiet nature is a disadvantage."
Darius Foroux
Author of eight books, including Do It Today and The Stoic Path to Wealth
"Engaging and Actionable. Thompson's journey is very inspiring and the lessons he's learned about owning our story and building the right relationships are things we can all implement. If you're looking to live with more authenticity and purpose, read Shy by Design."
Kim Dabbs
Global VP of ESG + Social Innovation at Steelcase and bestselling author of You Belong Here
"Shy by Design, is a vital book for ALL professionals looking to summon their inner confidence and courage to live a life and career on their terms, while elevating the people around them. Vulnerable, raw, and candid, Michael delivers a powerful conversation on how to overcome fear, let your best self shine, and help others find their own, unique voice."
Christopher D. Connors
Bestselling author of Emotional Intelligence for the Modern Day Leader and The Champion Leader
"Uplifting and highly actionable, Shy by Design shows us that we don't need to be the loudest person in the room to influence others in meaningful ways.
Michelle Woo
Award-winning journalist and former Senior Editor at Medium

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