I’m an introvert. People drain me. I read people like I read text. I can’t help myself. It’s a constant chatter of appraisals, questions, judgements, admiration, repulsion — all going off in my head. Crowds, bodies strung across spaces, people’s faces and clothes, the way they walk, they way they move, react and talk leaves me anxious and wired.
Worst places for people drain are:
Airports / Buses / Trains / Planes / Shopping malls / Bars / Concerts / Anywhere that people wait / Anywhere that people gather
It’s not just unknown people that drain me. Sometimes I have to escape my family and friends too. Being with other people is tiring. I can’t keep up. I don’t have the chat skills. I’m not witty. I don’t make people laugh. I don’t give advice. I don’t tell stories. I’m not informative.
I’m an introvert. I find energy by being alone. How will I cope during the year I’m traveling the world with my husband and two sons? We’ll be in each other’s pockets for sure, doing lots of exploring together and inevitably spending time in people-drain places as we travel.
How will I find my recharge space? How will I find my distance?
Running is a good solution. Checking out a new place for decent run routes is fun … might take a few days to get to know somewhere well enough to head on out, but I’ll do it. I’ll check local info for run events, parkruns and maybe even join some running groups when I can.
Walking is another great way to recharge. Escaping the rental to have a quick explore whilst the kids lounge about and the husband plays his music is very rewarding, especially when you dedicate the walk to finding the perfect ‘gun’ stick for the 8 year old whilst taking photos of anything that takes your fancy as you go.
Funnily enough, it’s during the times when I am most alone that I strike up conversations with strangers. Quiet, space, nature, movement, ambient sound, independence and accomplishment recharge me enough to want to reach out to others because I feel at my best.
I’m bad at not always getting out when I can. Anxiety builds and just getting out of the house can be fraught with infinitesimal barriers. Reminding myself of how much better I feel when I’ve conquered my brain-monkeys is the key. So I promise to find my distance whenever and wherever I can in the world. Cross my heart and squash a fly. I’ll find my first distance by running in Park Skowroni, Poland, and my second will be parkrunning in Kraków. Hold me to it.