Decking the halls and spreading holiday cheer can be great, but if you’re an introvert, this might be your least favorite time of the year. That’s because introverts can easily get overloaded by all the energetic social time that comes with the holidays. It’s not that introverts hate people, plenty of them even like to socialize, too. But afterwards? They need to recharge and spend some time alone and that can be tough with all the social obligations this time of year.
This is how introverts can make time for themselves and set boundaries so they can stay sane during the holidays:
- Take breaks - If you plan to go to all the gatherings, dinners and celebrations your loved ones are hosting, find a way to take a moment to yourself during the event. Hiding out for a few minutes in the bathroom may not be ideal, but it works when it’s the only place to get solitude.
- Make yourself useful - Did someone forget something at the store? Offer to go for them, that’s your chance for a bit of respite. If you need a break during the bustling party, ask the host if they need help with anything. Taking out the trash or washing dishes will give you a break, plus, the host will be grateful for your help.
- Pace yourself - Making others happy by attending every holiday event you’re invited to is great, but not if it leaves you stressed or unhappy. It’s okay to be choosy about your social calendar and really evaluate how you want to spend your time. And you can also schedule down time to be alone to recharge between events, that way you’ll enjoy them more.
- Drive to events separately - Taking your own car means you can leave when you want to and take a break by yourself out in the car if you need one.
- Bring a dish - This can serve as a natural conversation starter, which helps when small talk is hard to navigate.
- Leave early - You don’t have to stay until the party ends. Just come, connect with the host and other guests, help with some cleanup, then leave. Telling the host ahead of time that you can’t stay can also make you feel less awkward about making your exit early.
- Let go of the guilt - When you take care of your needs, you get to enjoy the holidays more and feel happier about the events you do choose to attend. So know your limits and don’t be afraid to say no.