Have you ever agreed to going out after a super long day? If you’re like me, that doesn’t go well. The key to handling introversion is to prioritize time to re-charge, even if that means skipping out on outings with friends.
I know, I know. It’s hard to say no! Considering the current circumstances around COVID-19, many of us don’t have a choice. So here are a few ways this time alone can help you be a better friend.
1. Spending time alone gives you energy
Being introverted doesn’t automatically mean you hate being around people. It means that you need alone time to recharge. Has your social battery ever died while you were out? Not a good feeling.
When we don’t have enough time to recharge, we’re burnt out, and we aren’t able to contribute in meaningful ways. And if my word isn’t doing it for you, here’s a professional opinion: Psychologists agree that you’re better off staying in every once in a while, because going against your natural inclination to be alone isn’t what’s best for you or the group.
I often feel pressured to say yes to plans when my heart wants to be solo. And in these cases, my attitude isn’t great. I’m thinking I’m doing my loved ones a favor, instead of enjoying the gift of their company. That isn’t fair.
2. Spending time alone gives you an opportunity to think about what you want
I tend to go along with what other people want. They want to eat at Zaxby’s, so I go along for the ride. I need to process my thoughts and feelings alone. It’s hard for me to process how I feel and endure the feelings of my friends and family. That’s a lot!
When I prioritize my alone time, I give myself a chance to reflect on what I need.
When I know what I need, I can make clear requests. Remember: clear is kind. Making my requests clear to the people in my life is easier for me and them. They know how to show up for me and can trust me to communicate authentically. Sounds like a recipe for a strong friendship!
3. Spending time alone gives everyone a break.
Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Take one for the team and create the absence that’s necessary to strengthen your bonds. Spending too much time together can drain everyone. It’s good to take a break, so you can remember why you’re friends with these awesome people in the first place.
And if you’re worried that taking time for yourself might hurt your relationships, you might want to reconsider whom you’ve chosen to be in your life. Just saying.
The more in touch you are with yourself and the more aware you are of your needs, the better you are at being a friend. There will be another event. Trust me.
What’s been your experience with taking time for yourself in relationships? Do you know when you need a break?