Happy New Year everyone!!! I know, I’m giving myself the side-eye as well while writing this post, but I have been living this blog post for the past 1 1/2 months. Now that I have passed through it, I can write it, citing my experience as examples.
Since the beginning of Operation Restore Legacy, the resignation of our President, and all the events that followed, I have been having a real bad case of sensory overload. To everyone around me, I looked and acted normal, but in my head, this was happening:
I had been on autopilot for the longest time, and it did not help that the holiday season started soon after all these events happened in my nation. Now I had family come over, visiting family and friends, travelling, making plans. It was great, but my brain was still crying:
It was after a fellow blogger asked a seemingly random question, that I did some introspection: my personality type is INTJ. The I means introvert, and that was one of the strongest traits about me. An introvert is not necessarily a quiet person (I’ve come to terms with that fact… I am not!), but is recharged by being alone. Now, I had not had proper alone time in months… allow my brain to cry for sure.
So now that I have learnt (the hard way)… here are some tips for surviving the holiday season, because Easter is coming soon, and you may want to put these tips to the test:
1. Check your sleep quality.
The first thing that goes during the holidays is sleep. Especially in Zim, people are coming over from the diaspora and they must all be seen before they go back for another stretch of time. They must all be squeezed in, conversations last hours, and sleep will suffer. The brain, however is a cruel mistress, and is unforgiving when it comes to lack of quality sleep. Whenever you have a free few hours, sneak in a nap (between 30-90 minutes) to refresh your brain.
2. Make the most out of all your alone time.
“Free time” is practically unheard of in Zimbabwean circles, especially if you are a woman. You must be seen to be running around, cooking, cleaning, serving, socialising, meeting everyone’s needs. During this time, for an introvert, free time is gold. If you have a free moment, grab on to it, and do the things you love. It is your time to recharge. I listen to soul, jazz & rock, and read.
3. Being alone includes social media as well.
I have had many alone times from mid-November and yet, I still had a bad case of sensory overload because I did not take alone time from social media as well. When I decided to take a break from Twitter, WhatsApp, etc, I saw myself come around. Turn off all notifications during your alone time, put your phone on silent. Focus on recharging; just like a phone recharges faster when it’s on flight mode, you’ll find yourself feeling refreshed faster after going off the grid for a small amount of time.
4. Schedule visits and get-togethers.
The introvert’s friend is planned get togethers and visits. It allows you time to recharge so you can be the best social person you can. It’s a common misconception that introverts are all hermits, who don’t want to be with people. Introverts can be social butterflies, but too much socialising drains them. When it’s time to recharge, they do it alone.
I hope this helps my fellow introverts prepare for the next crop of holidays: February 21st is coming, as is the Easter Holiday. Enjoy yourselves, and allow yourself to recharge when the time comes.
Until next time… your Quarter Wife.