5 Recharging Activities Every Introvert Should Try

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It was quiet in the house. Eerily so. For the first time this week, there was no company present, nor imminent. For a second, I just stopped, and sinking into the plush pillows of the sectional couch, found myself staring at the empty room with a profound sense of relief.

It’s not that I had hated the flurry of social activities this past week had presented; I actually had set up most the appointments, and had enjoyed them each in their own rights. (Yes  *gasp!* introverts do like social activities sometimes.) But now, with all people packed up, left, done and past, I found a headache, dull, at the back of my skull. There was that familiar sense of unease, my brain’s plea for respite, dare I exhaust my energies entirely, and risk a hangover. I needed a recharge.

As familiar as introverts are with the need to be anti-social from time to time, we also find ourselves quite often unsure what, exactly, to do to get away. All too often, I have found myself wasting an evening away thinking that I was getting a recharge, when, in fact, I wasn’t. Some activities, such as watching a movie, or playing a game, can offer a cheap fix for the moment, but in the end, are little more than a distraction. To truly recharge, an introvert needs to get away from high levels of sensory input.

Thankfully, doing so is not too difficult, with a little practice. Here are five tried-and-true recharging methods:

Books

Reading is not everyone’s cup of tea. (Come to think of it, tea is not my cup of tea. Where did that saying come from anyway?) But for those who find themselves at rest in a library, there are few activities quite as rewarding as losing oneself to the weathered pages of an age-old story. Although your head may be aflame in the story, the world around you is at rest, giving your mind and body the chance to reset, and rebuild.

A few tips from the seasoned rechargers:

  1. A tablet is nice, sure, but nothing compares to the feel of paper. Find a real book if you can. As a bonus, you wont be interrupted with notifications.
  2. Turn your cellphone, computer, and other noise makers to silent. No, not vibrate, silent. Make sure interruptions are kept to a minimum for a full recharge.
  3. If you find yourself getting bored, skip through to a better section. Not everyone enjoys the minute details, it’s okay to not read them.
  4. When you find an author you like, stick with them. Even if you have to pay a bit more money than you’d like for another of their books, it’s worth it in the end.
Introspection

When the house is already quiet, there is no better time for letting the mind wander. Whether you like structured thought or whimsical fancy, let your mind at it. You’ll be surprised at the places you can go!

A few tips from the seasoned rechargers:

  1. Mindless activities are perfect for letting your brain wander. Crocheting, solitare, or even dishes and laundry all can keep your body busy while your brain is off on vacation.
  2. Again, no noises! Turn off the ringer on your phone and other devices. Just one interuption can rip you from far off places back to the present.
  3. Have kids at home? A relaxing video game (think Open Ocean, Animal Crossing, etc.) can allow you to zone out while still playing with your little bundles of joy. (Or whatever else you may call them.)
Music

Very few activities can release the range and complexity of emotion that music can. Find a style you like on Pandora or Slacker, and let the computer choose the songs. Invent a new dance, play the air guitar, drum on the table, cry your eyes out, or sing along. What you do is none of anyone else’s business. Being real and being yourself will let your mind decompress like few other things can.

A few tips from the seasoned rechargers:

  1. Don’t be afraid of volume. The goal here is to drown out the world. Turn it up!
  2. One second your screaming your lungs out to AC-DC, the next your balling to some stupid Back Street Boyz song. Don’t try to control it. Just go with it, it’s the only way you’ll get some rest.
Nature

We big city people. We no need nature.

Yeah, right. When it comes down to it, our “civilized” world is failing us. Stress levels are through the roof for everyone, and we have no one to blame but ourselves. So step out of it. Get out in the fresh air. There really is nothing better.

A few tips from the seasoned rechargers:

  1. Bring along sunscreen/bug repelant/coats/blankets, etc. Nothing fun about being sick in bed the next day.
  2. It doesn’t take much to make a picnic out of it. Forget the big lunch, and grab a loaf of bread and some lunch meat. Being away from people is the big thing.
  3. Duck ponds are awesome. Seriously, you gotta try it. If you find one, mark it on the map, and go back regularly. (Just one note, take along a bag of corn, lettuce, oats, or seed, but try to avoid feeding the birds bread. They will love you eternally.)
Art

Artistic abilities be darned, get out pen and paper, yarn and darning needles, or your fourth grade harmonica, and make some art. Simple projects, like cutting pictures out of a magazine, can be every bit as much fun as something more time (and budget) consuming, such as scrapbooking. The big thing is to explore your creativity.

A few tips from seasoned rechargers:

  1. Try to keep it simple. You are going to have more fun making paper snowflakes than re-painting your livingroom.
  2. In this case, the recharge comes from the process, not the end result. Even if you end up throwing your creation away at the end of the day, you will have succeeded in getting some well-needed relaxation.
  3. Check out the dollar store. Seriously. You’ll find hundreds of projects for pennies on the dollar.

Stay tuned for next week, when we’ll publish five more of our favorite recharging activities. In the mean time, any additional tips on these five? Any activities you’d like to see added to our list? Let us know in the comments!

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