By Jirzia Blackman, LCSW-S—CEO-Founder
For introverts, the holiday season can be a double-edged sword. While it’s a time for celebration and togetherness, it can also bring pressures and overstimulation. If you’re an introvert, you might find it challenging to strike a balance between enjoying the festivities and preserving your mental and emotional well-being. In this blog, we’ll explore strategies and tips to help introverts navigate the holidays in a way that aligns with their nature and brings them comfort and joy. According to Eysenck’s Taxonomy, introverts do not do well in overly stimulating environments. The limbic system, meaning your emotional brain responsible for shaping your responses to various stimuli and situations, becomes overly stimulated. Extraverts scientifically strive best in stimulating environments; that is why social gatherings are not triggering for them.
Therefore, introverts, embrace your personality; you are not alone!
One thing an introvert can do is set realistic expectations for yourself and your family. Introverts often feel overwhelmed by excessive social interaction. Stay true to what feels comfortable to you, and don’t feel obligated to waiver due to environmental, social, or family pressures.
Be open and honest with loved ones about the fact that you are an introvert, which may increase understanding, and they may respect your need for downtime.
Prioritize quality over quantity. Try to fulfill a few meaningful gatherings and relationships rather than trying to attend every event. It is okay to say no and set healthy boundaries. You may have to say, “Sorry, I’m unable to attend this year.’’ Or “I will attend, however, only for 2 hours.” Your well-being is a priority; therefore, choose events and activities that resonate with you and decline those that do not.
Embrace smaller gatherings. Opt for intimate gatherings or one-on-one time with loved ones, which can be more enjoyable for introverts. Introverts often excel in one-on-one conversations and deep connections. Use the holiday season as an opportunity to strengthen your relationships.
It is imperative that introverts schedule alone time. Introverts thrive in solitude, so make sure to allocate time for yourself during the holiday season. Strategically plan breaks during social gatherings to recharge and prevent burnout. Create a retreat space. This can be a designated quiet, calming area in your home where you can retreat to when needed.
Use your free time to engage in self-care activities that help you recharge. Being an introvert comes with unique strengths, including introspection, creativity, and empathy, so embrace that!
As an introvert, you can find comfort and joy during the holidays by staying true to your nature and prioritizing your well-being. By setting boundaries, scheduling alone time, and connecting with loved ones on a deeper level. Make the holiday season a meaningful and fulfilling time that aligns with your introverted strengths and preferences. Remember the holidays should be a time of joy and connection, you can experience that in your own introverted way!