Do you find parties, weddings and other kinds of social gatherings to be energy draining? Do you like hanging out with those you know really well, as opposed to meeting new people? Or perhaps you prefer to spend your time in quiet solitude rather than socializing? Congratulations, you’re an introvert! And while you’ve probably experienced societal pressure to not be so reserved and reclusive, it is truly your disposition, it is how you were created to be, and it’s something all of us introverts can accept about ourselves and be okay with.
As you probably know, life as an introvert comes with its attendant complexities. The emotional and physical drainage of avoiding unnecessary chitchats, the bustle of committing to non-conventional ways of working, and the mounting societal pressure to transition to the supposedly much more fun extrovert style of living can be particularly stressing. Navigating through this crisscross of challenges, we sometimes forget to tend to our physical and emotional well-being, which is a roundabout way of saying we stop caring for ourselves.
As self-indulgent as the notion of self-care may sound, for many introverts it is an essential part of healthy living. It provides an avenue to replenish all lost energies while eliminating negativity. For every effort you invest in self-care as an introvert, you position yourself to:
Avoid overload burnouts
Grinding through life’s daily activities is already a tedious task. As an introvert, it’s even worse as you’re predisposed to stressing yourself to the point where you’re pretty much like ‘damn it – I give up.’ Self-care helps shield you from ever reaching this point.
Refocus when stress dampens your objectivity
Ever been stuck on school-work or experienced a writer’s block? Notice when you take the time relax before approaching the challenge later, everything seems to become much easier. That’s the power of refocusing, and self-care works similarly to help introverts function optimally in life.
Stay clear of negativity
Self-care is a great way to rid your mind and body from all the negativity that accompanies life experiences. The problem with negativity is that it is a nascent phenomenon, it slowly accumulates without you knowing and then eats you up from the inside. Self-care passively detoxifies you from its insidious influence.
It’s evident that self-care grooms and nurtures the introverted mind, and your personal experiences most likely corroborate this fact. Remember the jolt of satisfaction that came the last time you gave in to your innermost introverted desires – how you felt when you stayed at home even when you could have been out partying, that’s the reward of self-care. Self-care, however, goes past skipping parties and resting at home, it is a way of life you cultivate when you embrace the following habits;
Give yourself permission to say NO
No is a strong word – so strong that it is rarely used by peaceful and easygoing introverts. For many of us saying no plays out in our minds as offending people. We feel a sense of guilt and remorse because our psyche seriously kicks against hurting others. Saying no as an introvert is, however, not a case of disappointing others. In truth, sometimes we have to say no to protect our interests even if it means sidelining the requests of others – that’s not selfish, it’s just you taking care of yourself because if you don’t, no one else will.
Set aside time to refresh and recharge
As fundamental as having a time of solitude may sound, it is still one of the areas of self-care many introverts fall short of, no thanks to busy work schedules, societal and familial demands. Make provisions to chill out and relax, and accord such arrangements the same level of importance as you would a critical business appointment. For an introvert, relaxing and recharging is not a luxury, it’s a necessity that if neglected might potentiate a depreciation in overall productivity and sense of well being.
Stop comparing and contrasting
Refraining from making unhealthy comparisons is medicine to the soul. It sets you up to value what you have as against wishing for life’s many unnecessary accessories. More so, it helps you pursue a happier and healthier style of living. Granted, Jack might on the first glance seem to be more successful because he is outspoken, goes out more often and meet new friends, but just because Jack is outspoken doesn’t mean being outspoken translates to success or happiness. If anything, success is more of making optimal use of your talents rather than conforming or assimilating new skills and attributes. Be content with yourself, your qualities and your peculiarities. They are what makes you unique, and for the most part will be all you need to live a happy and accomplished life.
Overall, you can think of self-care as the oil that keeps the ride of life as fluid and smooth as can be.
Know what tickles your fancy
If you had an hour of total freedom, what would you choose to do? It could be a walk in a forest preserve to connect with nature, having lunch with your very best friend, or becoming fully absorbed in your favorite hobby. What’s important is that you know what gets you ticking. Once you’ve figured out what these are all that remains is for you to engage in them as often as is possible. This way you drive up your energy levels and fuel your optimistic spirit.
Overall, you can think of self-care as the oil that keeps the ride of life as fluid and smooth as can be. Too little or none of it, and you’re left stressed and scrambling through life; just the right amount and you are regularly refueled and recharged, and life as an introvert is pleasurable and better focused on your happiness. If you’ve not been taking care of your introverted mind and body, now’s the best time to start.