Mixing the introvert in you and the extrovert in others for the holidays doesn’t have to be contradictory.
Remember: it’s a matter of managing our energy that is different. We introverts are just as social, celebratory and want to enjoy life as the either an external or internal preference of being energized.
But regardless of your nature, we can enjoy the holiday season and here is how:
Consider what Charlie Brown would do.
First shown in 1965, A Charlie Brown Christmas, broadcasted there really is a truer meaning of Christmas. Charlie Brown showed in the end, the holiday goes beyond exchanging gifts. The true meaning is just in time for our introvert more introspective attitude. Party if you like, party if you don’t like. There is more meaning to the season so use it.
Gift yourself with understanding.
Here’s a gift to satisfy your curiosity. It’s one of the most accurate online MBTI like assessments in a spreadsheet. Okay, you may or may not have complete confidence in assessments. When I trained in two of the most popular behavior and personality types in the world, it became clear that when this happens, it might be because either our answers were as we thought they needed to be, or we didn’t understand the questions. So give this one, it’s free, based on the works of Jung, Myers, Briggs and Keirsey a try. The most confident of us are self-aware. When you know your traits you can use them to your advantage in any situation. Yes; even the holidays. Here’s the link for later: http://digitalcitizen.ca/2011/02/20/free-personality-assessment/
Plan a sanctuary system.
People who are like us just need some quiet place and space. Whether it’s a family or business party, I scout out the building or room for quiet. It could be a backyard, a bathroom or just a small corner of a room to make note of on arriving. Where ever it is, just go there when you feel your energy is low. Take a moment to let your mind and emotions get balanced. Do what the room allows you to do! Then as you re-emerge to the group, take a deep, long, calming breath – and smile.
Limit any gift exchange.
One year at a car club party, and an Italian club party, I just thought I would literally – run out! Run out of gas in one case and run out yelling, “arrivederci” in the other. The White Elephant Exchange went on and on. If you have ever played you know the gifts are unlabeled and the first person who opens their gift may not end up keeping it. A second person can either take that gift or open up a new one from the gift hall. When you have about 50 people this is not the kind of fun most people have in mind! Finally at a third party where I could see it coming, I suggested to the host a couple of ways to limit it. Everyone, really everyone, thanked me for that.
Follow the star.
The most recent studies from Center for Applications of Psychological Type, even though now dated from 1998, breaks down the introvert extrovert population as 50.7% and 49.3% respectively. Just like the star in the sky that guided the magi to Bethlehem, you can count on 1 out of 2 or 3 people feeling just like you. If you know yourself well, use what you know to find someone you can have a quiet conversation in a corner of the room with.
Keep in mind January 2nd is around the corner. That’s the official Introvert Holiday. Until then, enjoy the holiday as yourself.
What no-no’s, limits or gifts for the introvert’s holiday season can you add?
By Patricia Weber, a contributing blogger for JenningsWire, a blogging community created by Annie Jennings.