How to not suck at self-care as an introvert

Confession: I’m terrible at taking sick days.

Some gross proof of this is that time a couple years ago that I ended up with a bad cold and ear infection the night before I was supposed to leave for an eight-month overseas work term. I’d worked myself so hard to keep up my hours at my usual job, say proper goodbyes to my friends, and pack my things that I’d left minimal time to take care of myself.

This photo “Exhausted” is (c) 2011 leniners and made available under an Attribution Non-Commercial  license.

I ended up having to reschedule my flight for a week later–and believe me, I really needed to use that week to rest.

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3 tips to use anger constructively as an introvert

I’ve felt angry and generally uneasy this past week. I think that’s been true for a lot of people, due to the US election and other world events. It’s also come up for a more personal reason for me: I overheard someone call me ‘shy.’ (See my post in this blog on myths about introverts to find out how I feel about that word.)

Anger is a powerful tool that can help us figure out what is important to us and what really, really has to change. While many introverts don’t feel at home at protests, you can express anger in constructive ways. Here’s how. Continue reading “3 tips to use anger constructively as an introvert”

An Introvert and Her Bike

So… what do you do for fun?

This question causes me to stumble sometimes. Do people want to hear that I take books out of the library somewhat compulsively and am a wee bit sketchy when it comes to actually reading them? How about how I enjoy writing, even though my procrastination habit makes me wonder whether writing is actually just a tool I use to torture myself?

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Mental Health and Me

We can gain so much by listening to each other’s stories.

It’s easy to take this for granted when everything is going great, ‘hunky-dory’ as the saying goes–but I’ve been experiencing a change in perspective over the past couple of months that has made me want to reach out, to be a little more vulnerable, and to encourage others to do the same. So, in this post I want to share a little story of what’s been going on with me as it relates to mental health. Conveniently, it’s Mental Health Week in Canada, so I hope my voice will add to the many other important stories being told in the next few days across the country.

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Reflections on Mental Health and Introversion: What’s the Connection?

This photo,
This photo, “A man’s life,” is copyright Seif Alaya 2015 and made available under an Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.

I’ve been thinking about writing this post for a little while but felt nervous to put my thoughts on paper, er, screen. Mental health and mental illness are topics that fascinate and overwhelm me and I’m no expert on them (though I’ve written my fair share of sociology papers on mental health for my undergrad, for the record!). But from my experience with friends and family and just going through the regular highs and lows of everyday life, I have observed certain ways that being an introvert can affect one’s mental health.

Continue reading “Reflections on Mental Health and Introversion: What’s the Connection?”