I hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day and were able to spend some time with their family and friends. My husband and I spent the holiday traveling back to our home state (Ohio) for some wonderful time with friends. We had a wonderful time but now I am exhausted. Yes you heard me exhausted. One may wonder was it from the traveling? Hanging out in airports or late nights? The answer is no. The reason I am so exhausted and drained is I am an introvert.
Simply put when we look at introverts and extroverts we need to think about where we get our energy. Extroverts generally (like my husband) get energy from people, activities, and events. Introverts (like me) generally get our energy from our thoughts, ideas, and are most comfortable with 1 or 2 other people.
Introversion should not be confused with being shy. Shyness generates anxiety and comes from a place much deeper than "where we draw our energy." And no one is always 100% an introvert or 100% an extrovert, but it can be good to identify where you get your energy because that will tell you a lot about your self care should look like.
For more information on extroverts and introverts check out the Myers & Briggs Foundation
My introverted self is on cloud nine with a book, doing yoga, or chatting with a good friend. The energy I get from sitting in silence is electrifying and I can feel like I can take on the world. Now put my introverted self with large groups of people for an extended period of time and I can feel drained, worn out, and exhausted. My husband on the other hand can be exhausted from a long day at work and go out to a crowded restaurant and thrive off of the energy coming from the other people. What my self care looks like and what my husband's self care looks like is very different.
This is something to really keep in mind because self care is not a one size fits all kinda thing. I see this a lot with my clients and myself, we try to fit ourselves into this box of "what is good for you is what will be good for me too." Truth is that just isn't the case.
My husband for example would hate to spend an entire weekend alone at the house reading books and being reflective after a busy week. I crave those rare weekends where I can rest and recharge by reading, gardening, or spending the entire weekend cooking. A large part of self care is about doing things that will give you energy and sooth your nervous system.
Think about the things that give you energy. Gardening, reading, golfing, brunch with friends, happy hour, concerts, etc... Now brainstorm ways you can utilize these things even when you aren't in your ideal situation. That is the thing about life, we have to learn to bend so we don't break. We need to figure out ways to take care of ourselves even when we are not in our most ideal situation. Knowing, understanding, and respecting that your spouse, partner, child, or friend may not get energy the same way you do is equally as important.
For me, I literally snuck away this weekend a few times to take a nap and rest. If my spouse had not been respectful or understanding of that, how difficult for me it would have been. Introversion and extroversion are qualities that we all possess, they are a part of us and the 1st step to nurturing and loving ourselves is being able to identify the qualities we have that make us uniquely ourselves. How empowering and loving that can be when we do that.
Hello! Welcome to my Blog on self care . I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Registered Yoga Teacher.