The COVID-19 spring was quite a cruel psychological experiment over mankind. Apparently, the situation was tricky for all: introverts, extroverts and ambiverts.
Extroverts felt sick of being unable to get out, introverts – of being locked up in the same room with others. I guess ambiverts suffered a bit of both. Don’t you?
Those lucky introverts, who live alone (yet), could breathe with relief of being able to maintain their dream lifestyle for a couple of months. Those less lucky had to accommodate their loved ones next to themselves. And some, very unlucky, had to try to get along with people, who turned to be complete strangers. Shit happens. Ah, no, not to me. I am all right, thanks. That was just philosophy based on the divorce statistics.
My husband and I are a mid-aged couple of introverts, whose child identifies himself as an ambivert. I believe he’s turning into a full grown introvert within the next ten years. We’ll see…
Well, we have long experience of working, travelling and cooking together, – life welded us into a solid compound. We have learned each other’s small flaws years ago and are able to live with them. We are wise enough to give each other some space without any questioning. Ah, and we have some five different rooms available for three people. Also four laptops, five smartphones and a notebook. Sounds pretty freaky, but it saves a lot of my introvert nerves.
For all of us it is quite normal to keep silent, somewhat a few hours in a row. No, we haven’t argued. Just nothing smart to say.
As a sportive family, we used to move a lot, all together and solely. During the quarantine, all the facilities, indoor and outdoor, beaches and paths were closed from the public, so we had to be inventive. Cut out of our training routines, we had to find some substitute. As we live on the outskirts of the city, we used to sneak to the forest to walk. Actually, walking was, is and will be our usual physical activity routine, as it helps to sort out the kaaos of thought in the head. Many people really need a training like “Try to stay alone with yourself for one day”. I am afraid most will fail.
I admit, it is impossible to keep one’s sanity just sitting at home 25/7 for three months. It’s no surprise people begin to sing on the balconies (like in Italy). We didn’t sing. Our neighbors watching some old football matches upstairs were bad enough. Walking in the forest above the beach a couple of times per week, silent as spies, – that was how we kept ourselves fit and sane.
Working And Studying From Home
The COVID-19 quarantine brought up a funny paradox: people moaned all over the Internet about how shitty working from home is together with the fact many of them dreamed about it just a few days ago.
Working from home is the routine we practiced for at least 10 years. Of course, now we had all the meetings and kid’s school day revolving around the same bowl with fruits. It is not the best possible way to do it, but we still have enough private corners to get the work done.
By the way, did you know that children keep silent some 90% of their school time and speak up only when allowed? Yep, they do. Also during their zooms.
Working and studying from home requires a lot of self-discipline. Keeping up with the schedule next to your sofa, fridge and Netflix demands a plentiness of willpower. Those skills need conscious training.
That is something I love and have done from year 2000 when the first online shops appeared. It is not what you think, anyway. Brainless online shopping, which turned into a kind of epidemic during the quarantine, is far from my idea of purposeful and conscious consumption.
The issue behind my passion for online shopping is close to zero client service interaction. I have been approached by any client service by email only a few times in 20 years as well as got two (2!) calls. That is a perfect score.
In an ordinary shop, the fact of interacting with a complete stranger, whose only purpose is to sell me as much crap as possible, drives me crazy. Moreover, Internet shopping turned out to be a very ecological way to stock up. No excess driving, no messy shelves and nervous shop-assistants. Just pick up the goods from my list and check out.
Online shopping requires the same level of self-control as working from home. It should be result oriented. It is also the skill introverts usually master.
Reading eBooks is also a great eco-action. Delivering eBooks to your address will not cause that much eco-trouble as a paperback production.
As an Introvert I would like that THIS feature of COVID-19 time would last forever. It gives me an opportunity to avoid all the unnecessary and unwanted contacts. And when meeting somebody IRL I don’t need to let them into my private zone.
Friend Time: Quality Over Quantity
Introverts usually have a very narrow friend circle, but the bonds are considerably stronger and interaction – deeper. Now, getting away from obligatory communication duties, I can concentrate on my very best friends and on my family. My friend circle has never been large, but after quarantine it narrowed progressively into a very solid close friend community. Avoiding idle small talks at the school gate leaves me with half an hour extra time a day. It makes 3.5h per week. And 15h per month. I can use this time for something conscious, like talking to my best friend on WhatsApp. And we both appreciate it greatly, especially in the recent uncertain and grim situation.
Partying small allows you to get acquainted with the limited number of participants in a much deeper way. Of course, it can happen that the more you get to know somebody, the more unpleasant the contact becomes. The result is positive after all: you will find out after a party or two who are the people you would like to keep up with. Further, it means a Zero time waste for the ones, who are not your people.
Travelling Unfavourite Places
Well, travelling’s gone full kaaos. The urge to travel locally can give you an absolutely new perspective on the place you live. We’ve just walked to the city and found a new beach, which we didn’t visit yet while it is less than a 5 km from our place. That was rather funny.
Generally, our introvert travelling tactics were always about finding unusual places to visit. And in all tourist destinations we always tried to find a peaceful corner. With years it becomes easier. You just learn how it works the best for you.
Introvert Lifestyle of course is far from quarantine strictly regulated reality as normally people can decide themselves where and when they go. I hope that the positive thing we take out of it all, would be the ability to see life from a different perspective. The world is changing, and it is all about our will to make this change for bad or for good.
Paragliding in Albufeira, Portugal