You probably have a pretty good idea by the time you’re an adult whether you’re more of an introvert or an extrovert (or perhaps a bit of both which is called an ambivert.) No matter where you fall on the introversion-extroversion spectrum, we all need downtime to replenish our batteries, but what works for one person might be a total miss for someone else. Below, find some simple techniques that both introverts and extroverts can tap into when it feels as though your energy reserves are running low.
According to Psychology Today, introversion is a personality style characterized by a preference for the inner life of the mind over the outer world of other people. The outlet adds that introverts do not necessarily fear or dislike others (or are plagued by loneliness.) People who are more introverted tend to feel drained by too much social interaction and like to seek out activities that involve reflection and solitude. Here are some recharging activities that introverts might enjoy and find invigorating:
1. Meditate: Since introversion is all about finding energy within, rather than from the outer world, meditation is a great activity for introverts to tap into their internal energy and find a bit of zen away from the hustle and bustle of the world. Studies have even demonstrated that people who have meditated over the long-term show changes in areas of the brain concerned with stress and anxiety. If you’re new to the practice, there are some wonderful apps out there to help get you started like Calm and Headspace.
2. Read: Find a comfortable spot and reach for a good book, whether it’s an old favorite or perhaps something new—the key is to unwind, recharge, and enjoy getting lost in the pages.
3. Go for a walk: Introverts tend to enjoy subdued and solitary experiences, so going for a solo walk is another idea. Not only is spending some time in nature a wonderful way to feel rejuvenated, but it can also help soothe the mind and in overcoming those thought spirals.
4. Listen to a podcast: How about firing up a new podcast? There are tons out there for curious minds to choose from whether you’re into sports, politics, entertainment, true crime, comedy, history, and the list goes on.
5. Organize your space: Introverts like having a space of their own to unwind and relax (which can be much harder to do if this space is chaotic or cluttered.) Why not take some time to organize or clean this “happy place” to make it as enjoyable a sanctuary as possible? Bonus idea: this could be a good time to tune into to that new podcast or maybe have an uplifting show playing in the background.
On the other hand, extroversion is a personality trait typically characterized by outgoingness and high energy. Psychology Today points out that these individuals will tend to recharge, or draw energy, from being with other people. If you identify more as an extrovert, here are a few ideas to help you feel restored:
1. Take a social media break: If you’re very extroverted (and there’s nothing wrong with being a fabulous social butterfly), taking a break from social media (even for just a few hours) might sound like a tough suggestion, but it can be hard to get to know yourself when you’re constantly making it a point to get to know others and what they’re up to.
2. Dinner with friends: Grabbing a bite with friends is another idea. While not perhaps a conventionally relaxing activity to some, being around close family or friends in an enjoyable setting can be a rejuvenating experience for extroverts (Zoom hangouts or coffee dates is of course a socially distanced option.)
3. Try a new fitness class: Since extroverts tend to draw energy from being around others, trying a new fitness class like yoga or spinning is a great way to still be around people while taking a breather from the chaos of daily life.
4. Consider a new hobby: Interested in painting, cooking, crafting, music, etc.? There’s something out there for everyone, so why not look out for group classes in your community? Striking up conversations with people who have a similar interest could be a satisfying way for extroverts to feel energized.
5. Meditate: While we mentioned meditation as a recharging technique for introverts, it also applies to extroverts as it’s a wonderful way to be able to find stillness when you might feel thrown off by the world around you (extroverts can get exhausted from constant socializing, too.)
Lastly, we wanted to reiterate that this is all about what works for you—it’s about recharging your batteries and finding restoration versus simply selecting activities that sound like they fall under the umbrella of self-care. A good idea is to think about which activities make you feel energized and which ones might make you feel drained. And finally, perhaps you want to mix and match some of these activities depending on how you feel—your need for variety isn’t indecisive, it’s simply a sign of knowing what you want and that’s a great thing.