Large events can be the bain of any introvert’s life.
Luckily, there are some things we can do to navigate these events without sucking our introvert souls dry.
Here you’ll find 5 tips to help you navigate large events as an introvert!
Build in charge up and recovery time
Give yourself plenty of time before and after the event. Depending on the scale of the event you’re attending, you may want to block off the entire day before and the entire day after.
If you’re going to be in a busy social environment for a prolonged period of time, the key to enjoying yourself is to do what you can to manage your energy levels.
This includes going in with as much energy as possible and giving yourself some space and protection to recharge after the fact.
You might very well have an introvert hangover when this thing is over.
If you have a good time, it may be worth it. But still, you’re more likely to enjoy the event more if you go into it charged up and look back on it more fondly if you aren’t feeling the effects of it for a full week.
I talk about this a lot in the Introvert Life Guide, so if this is resonating with you, you might want to check that out!
Plan your exit
I’ve said it before on this blog, and I’ll likely say it many more times:
Always have an exit strategy.
It doesn’t matter that this is something you want to be at. At some point, even if it’s hours into the function, you will get tired and want to make your escape.
This is a lot easier to pull off gracefully if you know how you’re going to extract yourself and have a rough idea of when you think you’ll want to duck out.
Also, know how you’re getting home, and be in charge of your own transportation if you can. This way, you aren’t trapped waiting for anyone else to be ready to leave when you max out.
But if you happen to be attending with someone else, be on the same page up front about when you think you’ll be leaving.
There’s nothing worse than mentally preparing to leave after cake only to learn your extroverted spouse was planning on going for another hour or so.
And if you and a partner have different plans for the event, consider traveling separately so you can both enjoy yourselves in your own way.
See if you can modify the event
If you like the idea of some of or most of the event, see if you can modify it to meet your needs.
Maybe you’ve been invited to a networking event, and there are some people you really do want to talk to, but the idea of giving up hours of your time and talking to more people than you want sounds so painful.
There’s nothing that says you can’t leave early. And if it really is expected that you stay the whole time, talk to the coordinators, explain you’re only available for X amount of time and see if there’s a way to work something out.
This may not always go in your favor, but you’d be surprised how often people are willing to work with you if you just ask.
Don’t force yourself to do things you hate
If there’s an aspect to the event you’re not big on, don’t force yourself to participate just because you feel like you have to.
If you love weddings but aren’t big on dancing, you don’t have to dance. Eat, people watch, catch up with family. Do the things you like.
If you just showed up for your people and/or you’re having your own fun, you shouldn’t feel like you have to do anything that isn’t your idea of a good time.
Should people try to talk you into something, it’s okay to kindly, but firmly, say, “That is so not my thing, but you guys go have fun!”
Building on some of the above points, if the idea of the whole event actually makes you miserable, don’t go.
Society or family/peer pressure may tell you that you have to go to a given event, but you actually don’t. It’s your life, you get to make your own choices. And I firmly believe that no one should ever do something that would make themselves miserable to make other people happy.
Now of course, there may be some events where not going may be seen as unsupportive or hurtful. In that case, I’d recommend having a real and honest conversation with the person who may be hurt and see if there’s an alternative that can make everyone happy.
For instance, let’s say your extroverted best friend is really excited about her bachelorette weekend that you and her other more extroverted friends have been invited to. If this sounds like an absolute nightmare of a weekend to you (as it would to me), consider talking with your friend about an alternative.
You might approach her and say, “Hey, you know how much I love you and how happy I am for you. But I’m not going to be able to make your bachelorette weekend. It won’t matter who’s there or how much I would like the company, the activities of the weekend are not things I would enjoy and it will take a pretty miserable toll on me. But I want to celebrate with you. How about you and I do _____________ instead.”
Sure, your friend may be disappointed. But anyone who values you and your well-being should also be pretty understanding of this. And if they’re not, it might be time to re-evaluate their role in your life.
Looking for more in-depth tips on how to manage your introverted social life?
If you want to dig a little deeper into this topic, check out the Introvert Life Guide!
This guide was designed to help you build the introvert life of your dreams. And it’s full of plenty of tips and tricks to help you manage your introvert social life and big social events.
It will also help you embrace your introverted nature and build a life to help you thrive!
For more introvert life tips, check out the other introvert posts!
Sound off: What helps you navigate the big events? Tell us about it in the comments!