Island Senior: An introvert’s guide to the holidays

Posted December 1, 2022 at 12:51 pm by

Photo credit: Russel Barsh

For the last few years the glob­al pan­dem­ic has wreaked hav­oc with many of our cher­ished hol­i­day tra­di­tions. This has giv­en us all an oppor­tu­ni­ty to shift to sim­pler sce­nar­ios. We’ve out of neces­si­ty had to shift, or in some cas­es give up, tra­di­tions that pre-pan­dem­ic seemed per­ma­nent­ly estab­lished. We have an oppor­tu­ni­ty now to cre­ate new and pos­si­bly more reward­ing traditions.

But wait — is the pan­dem­ic over? While some of my friends have been eager­ly fill­ing up their social cal­en­dars and plan­ning trips, I’m still won­der­ing where I’m going to find the lev­el of soli­tude required to learn how to make sour­dough bread!

That’s right. I’m an introvert.

Often mis­un­der­stood, we intro­verts don’t dis­like peo­ple — we just might not want to see all of you at the same time. We need qui­et spaces in between activ­i­ties to regroup. The more extro­vert­ed among us might ben­e­fit from strate­gies intro­verts use to avoid stress­ing out dur­ing the holidays.

Rather than becom­ing like a ping-pong ball bat­ted from one activ­i­ty to the next, become the cap­tain of your own des­tiny. Make a plan. Before your cal­en­dar is full, block out days for qui­et activ­i­ties you know you will enjoy.

Spend some qual­i­ty time with peo­ple you love mak­ing cook­ies, watch­ing movies, and tak­ing nature walks. Plan a spir­i­tu­al­ly renew­ing retreat. Spend some time with ani­mals. Cre­ate your own jour­nal­ing work­shop. These are just a few sug­ges­tions to keep the mad­ness of the sea­son at bay.

I recent­ly saw a hol­i­day mes­sage from my friend Ale­jan­dra Zac­ci, who works as a life coach. She reminds us, “For those of you who don’t want to cel­e­brate, who don’t feel like cel­e­brat­ing, it’s OK. You don’t have to.” Let me repeat — you don’t have to, and it’s OK. You have free will and are allowed to make choices.

Here’s wish­ing you and your loved ones the very best of this win­ter hol­i­day sea­son in what­ev­er ways suit you best.

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Categories: Around Here, Island Senior

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