“We will not be coming to school for two weeks,” my high school principal announced. That line seemed like heaven on March 13, 2020, and I thought that this would be a well-deserved break for me. After a long eight months of high school and trekking through all those tests, clubs, and sports, I would finally get a break. Little did I know what this lockdown would hold. For some of us, the coronavirus lockdown meant finding more time to exercise and take care of ourselves. For others, the lockdown meant losing a job or getting separated from family. However, for some people like me, quarantining meant losing the ability to socially interact with others, which is the foundation of being extroverted. Being extroverted during these difficult times in the world has become so consuming that several children, teenagers, and adults suffer the consequences. To address this concern, we’ll first examine how the lockdown has specifically affected extroverts and then brainstorm some solutions toward how we can help our fellow extroverts out.
Extroverts During Lockdown
When the lockdown first began, we extroverts didn’t know what the effects would be. At the beginning, the conditions weren’t too bad. Both introverts and extroverts took the time to reach out to each other and stay in touch. But as time progressed, many introverts adapted to this new environment because it fueled their needs. They enjoyed not having too many social interactions and could thrive, both mentally and emotionally, in these environments. On the other hand, for extroverts, social interactions were like sand, quickly draining out of their hands. As Alex Berg, a writer for NBC News, says, “For extroverts like me, our brain’s reward circuitry is activated when we’re in a social environment or group and feel the spotlight of attention.” With Berg’s ideology, it’s evident that extroverts are feeling constricted in their rooms, houses, or socially limited environments. They generally thrive off the in-person interactions in their daily lives, but when that got cut off unexpectedly with the pandemic, extroverts were at a loss of ways to cope.
As an extrovert myself, my experience has been quite difficult. When quarantine first started, I thought I’d take advantage of the time I got with myself. I exercised more, located some of my passions, and spent more time taking care of myself. Soon enough, these activities weren’t sufficient to fuel my extroversion. I had genuinely benefited from the interactions between me and my teachers, classmates, and friends, but it seemed like that had just been taken away from me. I started feeling isolated because I wanted to express myself. I wanted to simply embody all the social interactions I once got. It got even worse when I would reach out to my mostly introverted friends and they would not see my state of mind. I mean, they were flourishing. These types of environments were what they enjoyed. At the end of the day, I realized that I was running out of solutions and I needed to come to a resolution fast.
Tips for Getting Through Lockdown
Eventually, after scavenging the internet, I found some solutions on how to battle this lockdown as an extrovert. Just like Jelena Kecmanovic from the Washington Post suggests, extroverts should try to spend more time outdoors, whether that means biking, hiking, or going for a jog. In addition, try blasting your favorite song or going on an adventure regardless of how big it is. These small steps will help you foster the connections you’ve been missing and guide you in the process of growing. Most of all, make sure that you are aware of communicating. Take the chance and tell the people around you, like your friends and family, how you feel. When you talk about something, it gets easier to solve. The time in the world is definitely hard, but in a few years, you’ll look back and see yourself grow into an even more beautiful human being.
Note: This is an opinion piece.