EVEN IF YOU’RE NOT AN INTROVERT…KEEP READING!
Growing up I always thought I was an extrovert because of my outgoing personality. I got so confused by the whole introvert, extrovert, introverted extrovert, extroverted introvert, ambivert thing. And, I recently learned that being an omnivert was a thing (I’m officially exhausted). I clearly never thought about the questions I should be asking myself as an introvert when it came to social interactions.
As I got older I realised just how much I loved being in solitude. I’d often be told “you’ll get lonely” but now I call bullshit. Clearly these people didn’t know the difference between being lonely and being alone – a concept I touch on in another blog post “10 Differences Between Being Alone and Feeling Lonely That You Need to Know”. They were projecting their own fears onto me, but I know myself well enough to not be swayed by their thoughts and feelings.
Eventually I came to associate myself more recently with being an ambivert. I could turn it on or off easily depending on whether I was in a social setting or at home. However, since the pandemic started, I feel like my introverted side has overshadowed my extroverted side. I’ve found myself more protective of my time, how it is spent, and who I spend it with. With the theme for my year being wellness, I’m paying more attention to my well-being and listening to my body, mind, and soul. So naturally, taking more time out for introspection or to mentally and emotionally reset alone is inevitable.
So as an ambivert who’s been leaning toward a more introverted nature this year, I’ve come up with ‘questions every introvert should ask themselves before giving their time to others…
WILL I STILL HAVE TIME FOR ME?
I take my ‘me time’ VERY seriously. Don’t laugh but I need daily ‘me time’ to function properly. I’m mentally exhausted if I don’t set aside time at night before bed to shut off my brain. No phone, no social media, no news, just getting swept into the storyline of a great film or show. I need to make sure whatever I’m doing with other people will still afford me the time to myself that I need.
HAVE I ALREADY OVERCOMMITTED MYSELF?
We have to STOP feeling obliged to say yes to people we care about if our schedules are already full! If the people we care about, care about us, they will understand that you’re not able to be there for them every time they ask; even if they don’t understand why you’ve said ‘no’.
I find that the more you overcommit, the less present you are. You’re more focused on watching the clock to be at your next engagement on time. Or you’re too exhausted to be (or have) any fun with the person/people you’re with.
WILL SEEING THIS PERSON CAUSE ME STRESS AT TRYING TO COMPLETE MY TASKS?
Another one of the questions every introvert should ask themselves is, “Will seeing this person cause me stress at trying to complete my tasks?”.
I know that people pleasing feeling all too well honey. You want to be there for someone despite your schedule already being full, and because they’re there for you when you need them. However, I’ll say it again – they have to accept a ‘no’ from you. Especially if saying yes will be detrimental to your mental and/or emotional well-being.
For us full time working people, we have A LOT to fit into our “free time”. Somehow on weekends we have to squeeze in seeing family and/or friends, housework, groceries, things we want to do for fun AND ‘me time’. Something has to give, before we crack!
HAVE I ALREADY SEEN THIS PERSON RECENTLY?
If you’ve already hung out with someone recently, it makes saying no that much easier! And once again, they have to accept your ‘no’ even if they don’t understand why. If they don’t accept it, that’s entirely their problem and not yours. However, as I’ve already mentioned, someone who loves you will be understanding.
DO THEY REALLY NEED ME RIGHT NOW?
The last of the questions every introvert should ask is “Do they really need me right now?”.
The only time I make an exception to the rules is when a friend or family member really and truly needs me. You will know when this is the case. I hate when people are hurting and being there for someone comes naturally to me. It’s what I believe a good person does. I will always put aside myself for the people I love. In the grand scheme of things, watching movies alone before bed pales in comparison to the pain a friend or family member might be feeling.
If I have to say no for whatever reason, I will generally ALWAYS organise an alternative time to spend time with someone. It’s the polite thing to do and it shows the other person that you do value them, you’re just taking care of you and filling your bucket first!
Take care of yourselves and don’t be afraid of saying ‘NO’! Okay?
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I love you 3000!