I’m introverted by nature, so spending time with groups of people tires me out pretty quickly. Introverted people typically need time to themselves to recharge their batteries, to be alone with their thoughts. They’re typically more reflective than most because they feed off that solitude.
I’m speculating, of course, because that’s merely been my experience as an introverted person, but I’ve heard from friends that they can be the same way (how do you think we became friends?). However, if you combine an introvert with a mental illness, that alone time becomes increasingly more complicated – and not easy to come by.
Alone With My Thoughts
I’ve never really liked being ‘alone with my thoughts,’ at least in the way people imagine it to be. I’ve discussed what a brain on anxiety looks like in earlier posts, and that ties into it. If I have nothing to do but think, it’s very easy (and almost effortless) to tumble down a thought spiral in the blink of an eye. Even if I’m doing one thing, my brain can still be preoccupied by another. That’s why I try to keep my brain preoccupied at all times.
I often multitask, listening to music or having Netflix on while I do something else, because there can’t be a shred of time spent alone with my thoughts. Some days it’s more serious than others, but I slowly developed a habit of being someone who does two things at once all day, every day. At this point, I don’t even try anymore – it just happens. And I think it’s allowed me to build up fear of my thoughts.
Giving It A Shot
I used to be much more afraid of my own thoughts than I am now. There were days where every thought I had was a negative one – or worse. Much like anyone else, I didn’t want to surround myself with those thoughts, so I did whatever external activity I could to occupy my mind. While I still do this, I don’t think I’m as afraid of my own thoughts as I used to be.
That’s not to say that I enjoy just sitting back and thinking about things – my brain isn’t there yet. But I am ready to try. I can’t improve my mental health unless I take a chance on myself. I’m in a good place and I think it’s time. We’ll see how it goes.
Do you like having alone time? Why or why not? Let me know in the comments!