Nearly the weekend

It’s been a long week. We’ve been consistently busy at work which is good. But the only downside is that greater engagement with clients and coworkers at work leaves me more burned out by the time I go home. Fortunately I have about an hour alone in the evening before my roommate gets back. So I use that time to prep supper, prepare things for the next day, and do bits of cleaning in our shared areas.

I’m not sure if it’s due to the restrictions, but my (highly extroverted) roommate has been more needy than ever. She’s pretty good at leaving me alone if my door is closed. And I’ve been utilizing that option a lot lately in order to recharge. So that’s been great. But as soon as I leave my room to fetch a glass of water or use the washroom, she pops out of her room like a jack-in-the-box and starts talking. It would be almost comical if I wasn’t so mentally exhausted. And at that point, I’m not even coherent. So I can’t really explain why I need to be alone.

On the plus side, we’ve been having absolutely beautiful weather. So I’ve been able to go for walks outdoors more often. It’s truly been a lifesaver. Especially since my roommate only leaves our place for work and groceries. And constantly wants to talk when we’re in the same room. And follows me around like a puppy if I move from one room to the next.

But I’m looking forward to this weekend. I’ll probably do some cleaning around home (with headphones in). Grab a cup of coffee or tea and go for a walk. And spend some time with my daily planner. What are you up to this weekend?

A busy wedding weekend

bride-and-groom-768594_1920Last weekend, I flew out to the US for my best friend’s wedding. It was a wonderful weekend and I’m so glad I was able to make it. However, it was also incredibly busy.

I flew out Thursday afternoon and arrived around 11 PM after a flight delay. My friend picked me up from the airport and we drove to her place. We talked for a bit but headed to bed around midnight since she had work the next morning. I puttered around for the morning and then met up with her for lunch. After eating, we drove a few boxes over to their new house and I got to see the place. Then we spent the evening with her family.

Saturday was a flurry of activity. Family brunch, social events, family dinner, and wedding set up filled the day. Once tables were set and decorated, sound systems tested, and lights hung, it was time to head home.

Sunday dawned bright and early. I made a quick breakfast for the two of us. Then we dashed out the door around 8 AM, quickly grabbing dresses and accessories on the way out. We started working on wedding hair until 9 AM, then headed down for rehearsal. We ran through things a few times so everyone knew what they were doing. At 10 AM we headed back to finish up hair, steam dresses, and get the bride into hers. We took group photos for about an hour. The ceremony began at noon, with a reception to follow while the bride, groom, and family took photos. The rest of the wedding party grabbed food and something for the toasts.

The bride and groom made their entrance and enjoyed their first dance. The father-daughter and mother-son dances followed. Then they sat down for the toasts. More dancing ensued while people offered their congratulations to the happy couple. Then they left for their honeymoon and those who remained helped with the cleanup. After a couple of hours, things were back to normal. I headed out to catch up with friends. But was back early to pack up my suitcase and prepare for an early flight the next morning.

It was an incredible weekend. I was so honoured to be there for my friend’s wedding. It was wonderful getting to watch her marry her best friend. But by the end of it, my introvert self was extremely burned out. These past few days have included going to bed early, getting lots of quiet time, and taking care of myself. Fortunately, my roommate has been working evenings, so I’ve had the place to myself for the most part.

How was your weekend?

Introvert guide: 5 camping tips

men-2425121_1920This weekend is Canada Day and I’ll be spending it camping with friends! I love camping. You can get out in nature, spend time in reflection and solitude, and eat delicious food. On the other hand, there will be a number of other people there too, so I’ll need to prepare.

Preparing for a camping trip takes a lot of time and effort. There are packing lists, grocery lists, and to-do lists to create and utilize. As an introvert, there’s one extra list that gets added to the mix. Here’s my ‘how to survive a camping trip’ list.

1. Recharge before & after
Set aside time both before and after the big trip to recharge. If possible, get all your packing done two days before departure. Then you can spend the night before doing something relaxing. Go for a walk, watch a movie, or sit down with a book. It’ll help you relax after all the running around and prepare you for the craziness to come.

2. Scope out the area.
Once you arrive and set up, look for possible ‘recharge areas’. Check out walking trails, rivers and streams, and other secluded areas. When you inevitably start running out of energy, you already know where you can go. You can politely excuse yourself and head somewhere quiet. Even volunteering to gather/chop wood or do some kitchen prep can help you escape the chaos.

3. Snack often.
As an introvert, spending time with people takes a lot of energy. If I’m running on empty, social interaction becomes painful. Bring lots of snacks and be sure to refuel when you need it. Some of my favourites are homemade protein balls, dried fruit, sliced veggies, beef jerky, and lots of water.

4. Check your energy.
I usually forget to do this, so I’ve decided to check in with myself at mealtimes. Assess how you’re feeling and how much energy you have. Do I need a quick escape to the bathroom or do I need an hour alone with a book?

5. Know that you’re normal.
As an introvert, it’s so easy to get overwhelmed and burned out. Especially when you’re spending time with the same people over several days. This is a perfectly normal reaction. We love people, but time spent with them has to be on our terms. Taking time to read and relax, or escape on a walk when you need, is healthy. Enjoy camping the way you want to.

What are your plans this weekend?

15 introvert-friendly things to do

sunset-691654_1920I love long weekends! We have one coming up and I’ll be spending a few days with my family. Long weekends are great because of the extra time you can spend doing whatever you’d like. I wanted to share 15 introvert-friendly things to do on a long weekend (or any weekend for that matter). Perfect for going solo (or with someone you like spending time with).

1. Go to a park and wander.
Find a nearby park and go for a long walk. Follow the path and see where it goes, explore, bring snacks for a small picnic, sit and meditate, etc.

2. Movie night.
Have a movie night or Netflix session at home. Make popcorn and snacks and spend the evening getting lost in another world for a few hours.

3. Make a recipe.
Find a recipe for something you’ve always wanted to make, then make everything from scratch. A long weekend is the perfect time to try out new things. Pair your creation with a nice glass of wine (or whatever you like).

4. Spend time planning.
I love planning. It helps me get all the ideas flying around my head on paper so I’m not constantly thinking about them. Use the extra time to sit down and plan out your next week or month’s activities. Or work out your next month’s budget. It helps get you organized and reduces stress.

5. Practice your photography.
Head outdoors and snap photos from different angles. Or stay indoors, play with lighting, and see if you can perfect your food photography. Feel free to get inspiration from Instagram and Pinterest if you need ideas.

6. Be creative.
We’ve all got projects sitting around collecting dust. Take advantage of the extra time and finish up that painting, crochet, video, or sewing project.

7. Get active.
Spend time getting in some exercise and enjoying the endorphins that come as a result. Go for a run or a bike ride. Follow a yoga video or body weight workout on YouTube. You’ll feel great and it’ll give you more energy.

8. Coffee date.
Head to your favourite coffee (or tea) place and order your favourite drink. Spend some time alone with a book, or with your favourite person.

9. Check out the arts.
Find out when local plays, musicals, or free concerts are happening and check them out. They’re usually a lot more low key than busy festivals. But if you like festivals, go for it, just keep an eye on your energy.

10. Read a book.
What better way to spend your extra time than catching up on your reading? If its a particularly beautiful day you can even take it outside.

11. Work on blog ideas.
I love looking up different ideas for blogging, doing research, and writing up drafts for possible posts. It gets me excited for blogging and gives me extra writing practice.

12. Take a long bath.
There’s nothing more relaxing for me than soaking in a hot bath. Bubbles or bath bombs are optional but lots of fun. If you’re not a bath person, a nice hot shower also does the trick.

13. Connect with others.
Long weekends are the perfect time to connect with those who are important to you. Whether you get together in person, or share a phone or video call, furthering personal connections is one of the best uses of extra time.

14. Learn a new language.
You can find lots of online resources for learning a new language. There are tons of free apps, websites, and podcasts to get both written and conversational instruction. Go out and educate yourself 🙂

15. Nothing.
Feel like doing nothing? That’s a perfectly valid way to spend your weekend. Just make sure you take care of yourself too.

What do you like to do?

A busy, relaxing weekend

BBQ

This past weekend was both busy and relaxing. Monday was Victoria Day, a federal holiday in Canada. As a result, I enjoyed a lovely long weekend at home with my family. I headed down on Friday night and spent the remainder of the weekend there. Friday night and Saturday were fairly normal, then Sunday happened.

Sunday was a crazy, good busy, kind of day. We had a BBQ planned with lots of family and friends attending. I arrived at the location at 9:30 am to help with set-up and food prep. The food and fun lasted all day and we didn’t finish cleaning up until around 6:30 pm. We pretty much ate and talked the entire time! But the fun didn’t stop there. Directly after the BBQ, I headed to a friend’s house for a few hours of Mario Kart and card games. I think I finally got back around 10:30 pm and pretty much passed out. It was a really enjoyable day and I’m happy I went, but I was pretty done by the end of the night.

Monday was the complete opposite of the previous day. It was the most laid back and relaxed I’ve been in a long time. I slept in, which was awesome, and spent the majority of the day relaxing with my family. Since I wasn’t at home, I didn’t have my to-do list haunting me. Several games of cribbage were had, along with snacks and tea. Totally my kind of day. I also fit a workout in which never fails to lift my mood. I eventually drove back home but even that was fairly relaxing and non-stressful.

My weekend was an interesting mix of busy and quiet. I got to spend quality time with friends and family which made it all worth it. There are still times where I wish I had more energy. I still dream about having enough energy to throw myself into everything with reckless abandon (without burning out). But I’ll never be that person and that’s okay. I know that I have a finite amount of energy each day and I have a fairly good grasp on my physical and mental limits. As a result, I can take that into consideration when planning things. Being introverted is definitely challenging, especially when you want to do all the things, but that’s who I am. And if I can’t accept my own nature, how can I expect others to do the same?

How was your weekend?

Image credit: “BBQ” by Harvey Jiang is licensed under CC by 2.0

I love weekends

LakeThis week has been a bit more stressful than most. At work, we were down a few people due to travel and sickness so the workload was higher than usual. But its still been a successful, enjoyable and good week. Nonetheless I am still ridiculously excited for this weekend.

I love the weekend for catching up on small projects, taking time to read, and sometimes, not doing anything at all. Just sitting on the couch with a cup of tea and staring into space, thinking about everything.

Weekends are so restorative for me. Because I don’t always get enough quiet time on the weekdays, I definitely look forward to the relative peace of Saturday and Sunday.
Are you able to recharge on the weekends? What do you like to do to relax?

Image credit: “Frozen about Crater Lake” by Powderruns is licensed under CC by 2.0

Happy long weekend!

Park benchWhere I live (Canada) its a long weekend. I’ve driven up to my parent’s place and am going to spend some time with them. Being with my parents is really relaxing. Both of them are introverts, they don’t drain my energy like a lot of people do, and they’re just all around enjoyable to be with. On Sunday, I’ll be heading to a picnic with a large group of people, but it will only be for a few hours, so I think that it will be alright. I know that after any social events, I end up sitting on the couch or in my room for hours, recharging.

How do you react to and deal with the lack of energy after socializing? I’d love to know 🙂

Image credit: “Park Bench” by Billy Wilson is licensed under CC by 2.0