Social Wellbeing

New Preferences for Socializing

Over the past year, as an extrovert you may have realized some approaches to socialization that you love…or hope to never do again. Similarly, introverts may have developed new skills or determined they need at least 30 minutes a day to themselves.

The Challenge

How have your preferences for social interaction, reflection, and building energy changed over the past year? Some extroverts may have a new found love for quiet time and introverts may be realizing that virtual interactions are a great balance to spending time with friends. Reflect on the past year and consider how you are navigating social interactions as an introvert or extrovert.

Social Distancing drawing

Make a list of the various ways you had social interactions (work, family time, video game nights) as well as a list of how you spent your personal time. Then go back and circle what you really enjoyed and star what you thought was more challenging. Ask yourself these questions?

  • Can you keep doing what you circled?
  • Balancing Zoom calls with the camera on and off?
  • Weekly catch-ups?
  • What can change about the items you starred?
  • The length of time?
  • The “setting”?
  • Who you are with?
  • How have your boundaries for socializing changed?

Reflecting on where you get your “energy” and claiming yourself as an introvert or extrovert is not new. However, the past year of changes to social interaction may mean changes to your “energy”-producing preferences as an introvert or extrovert. Introverts recharge through alone time and self-reflection. Extroverts rely on the time they spend with or around others to gain their energy. Both styles experienced unique changes and challenges over the past year.

As an extrovert you may have adapted to virtual hangouts, game nights, or professional development events. You may have quickly realized that these virtual, social interactions still allow you to recharge, but in smaller groups or one-on-one. This may become a new preference as you develop stronger relationships with a smaller group of people.

Similarly, introverts had to adapt to the ways they recharged and in some cases, being home with roommates or loved ones meant you could never really have “me” time. This change in routine or inability to have your own space may have informed new preferences or considerations for yourself as an introvert. Particularly, professional and self-development was a common way introverts spent their time over the past year.

Tools Needed:

Pen, paper and calendar (to remember your different connection points).

Let's Get Together:

Chat with a Sister or loved ones. How have their socializing preferences changed? Instead of restarting weekly brunches, can you all continue the weekly virtual hangouts? Or perhaps there is a professional development series you can do on your own, but then reflect on the takeaways with a loved one?


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