This past weekend, we were involved in a large-scale (for me) volunteer activity. My part was doing something I love, and for some really great people (old friends and new). Being an introvert, activities like this can be a challenge. During the event, it was easy to feel energized and feed off the energy of all those dynamic extroverts in the crowd. By Sunday afternoon, everyone had left, and I was craving some quiet time. Monday was pack up and move day and more quiet time/time out.
Our event was a success. Members came together from across the state to work together to train (and actually put the training into effect on the last day for a real-life situation) and refine skills. It was very gratifying to be able to offer support in the background.
(I will admit to using the event to distract me from a couple things looming on the horizon that are a little concerning.)
My grace lesson from this weekend is the reminder to respect my introvert friends. After doing something like this, quiet time/time out is especially important. Although energizing during the activity, it is also very draining. It has taken me this long to recognize and schedule this important 1-2 days of quiet to recharge my batteries. Have an introvert in your life? Respect their need to be quiet – give them space. Don’t make them feel guilty for needing to be quiet, don’t mock them or make light of the stark change in mood (unless it lasts more than a day or two). Just be there – don’t assume that they are mad or upset, believe them when they say they aren’t. Like plants draw energy from the sun, introverts draw energy from quiet. It’s like a soothing balm.
This is true for me – and coupled with a few things still looming on my radar – I’m asking for a couple prayers if you can spare them. I have 3 more “challenges” in the next week – then we are going to start planning and prepping for our next road trip.