It’s time to channel your inner introvert

Opinions

How socialites should approach the new restrictions

introvert COVID-19
Photo via Pixabay.

The new restrictions brought more shutdowns and less socializing, but at least the weather is bad enough to keep you inside regardless. B.C. has been hit with a new set of COVID-19 regulations, drastically reducing social gatherings to people within a single household, or a tight group of two others if you live alone. And you know what? I’m actually kind of enjoying it.

I’m not saying I would enjoy another full-scale lockdown; fortunately, the new restrictions aren’t that tough. But for those who, like myself, enjoy socializing and going out to pubs and bars, I encourage you to try channelling your inner introvert for a little while. Who knows, you may like them. 

The original shutdown was stressful, to say the least. Everything felt uncertain: people raided grocery stores, stuffed cash into mattresses, prepared survival kits, and bought gold and guns (okay, maybe that was just my family from the interior). But now, we know what COVID-19 is, and what it looks like. And I think we are fairly sure, this time around, that this isn’t going to be the apocalypse. 

When things began to reopen after the initial lockdown, I was good, or at least I tried to be. But when pubs opened and case numbers on the Island decreased, like many people, I was less good. 

Social bubbles grew a little wider. Although I had a core group of five others, every now and then I’d go for one-on-one drinks with a work contact, or an old friend, but I never really saw them as a breach of my bubble. 

It became stressful in a way. Not the pandemic, but figuring out who I could see and trying to figure out what made sense for my partner and I. I felt guilty when my desire for social contact led me outside of those limits. 

And then, on Nov. 20, provincial restrictions were updated and suddenly — poof — the stress was gone. 

It was Friday night, and I was reading a novel for class, while thinking about my weekend plans when I got the update. I read the government release, and went back to reading. Just reading. No need to think about where I wanted to go, who I could/wanted to see, nothing, just the writing of Frank McCourt. And God did it feel good. 

For many, socializing feels like a necessity, whether for enjoyment or out of a weird sense of need and duty. Whenever I have free time in between my jobs and school work, I get this little voice that tells me, “hey, you should go hang with so-and-so, you haven’t seen them in awhile. Oh yeah and blah-blah wanted to chat about a new project. You should see if they want to meet at the pub.” Whatever it may be, I can’t imagine I’m alone in feeling this persistent sense of duty or need to socialize.

In the short period of time when provincial rules were becoming more relaxed rather than restrictive, people could take advantage, like we often do. Now that regulations have tightened, it is clear what needs to be done.

Watch a movie, meditate, read a book for fun, or go back to that creative project you’ve been putting off. What happened to that great period in early lockdown when everyone was starting gardens, baking bread, and building things? Okay, the gardening part may be tough right now, but do you see what I mean?

We can bring these things back, while at the same time helping to eradicate this pandemic without the stress we felt before.We have the opportunity to go back to this level of creativity and self-development that we had in early lockdown without the fear of the world crumbling around us. 

Introverts, we need your help. Give us your advice, show us the importance and comfort of just spending some time on our own. And extroverts, I know this may be difficult, but the more we do to get this pandemic under wraps, the closer we get to the ragers we are going to throw once this is all over.