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Improving the Social Life of an Introvert

The weekend is approaching and yet your calendar remains empty. There are no plans for going out to dinner, attending any sporting events, or doing any homework before the Sunday deadline.

The small number of friends you do have already made their plans for the weekend, and being the introvert that you are (that I am), you feel it’s a little too imposing to ask to join them. 

What do you do now?

Nothing, a small voice in the back of your head says. A part of you is not totally disappointed that there is nothing scribbled in the boxes headed Saturday and Sunday. You’ve now got a clean slate; nothing that requires you to leave your room or induce any amount of social anxiety at the prospect of going out.

This could be the weekend you catch up on sleep. It could be the weekend you enjoy a good book (if that’s not your forte – a good movie, indulging in the occasional binge of Gordon Ramsey shows, or just listening to good music would suffice). The ideas are endless, and staying in your sweats all day doesn’t sound like such a bad idea.

But then the thoughts start to creep in: Why are you in your room? On a Saturday night? You’re a college student, and with only so many years left, you should be going out, making friends, taking advantage of your younger years.

No doubt these thoughts are amplified when your mother calls you to ask how you’re doing and what you have planned for the day, and you reply: Oh, nothing. I might just stay in and relax. This means you are met with a slight second of silence before she replies Oh, that’s good. In other words, my daughter isn’t making the effort to have a social life. The split second hesitation speaking louder than words.

And yes, mom, I do make the effort. This twenty-year-old has lots of tricks up her sleeve. Ones I am willing to share.

Likewise, when stuck in this situation, there are several things you can do. 

Number 1: Go do something by yourself.

Yes, yes, yes, what’s the point of going out if there’s nobody to spend it with? I hear you. However, what’s so wrong with spending time with yourself? Getting a little one-on-one time. No, this technique does not help increase one’s social life, but it does have the potential to.

Whether this means you buy a last minute concert ticket, take a walk downtown, or even something as simple as going to the nearest coffee shop, hey, at least this means you’re out! You can already say you made the effort. From there, who knows if you may bump into someone or somebody will spark up a conversation with you!

Number 2: Go to a sporting event

This method encompasses number one, but it has its differences. While some people may not enjoy sporting games, this does not apply, but for those that do, this is a great way to get the heart pumping. If you’re lucky enough you’ll attend a nail-biter, and when the winning buzzer goes off, who knows, you may jump up and down in unison with the person next to you. It can happen, speaking from experience.

On a more important note, you’ll get to look at some pretty muscular men or women – nothing you can go wrong with. Overall, the air of excitement and knowing a whole arena of people are there for the same reason you are is one thing that could bring out that extroverted introvert in you.

Number 3: Message everybody you could possibly know in your area

While your close friends may have different plans, this is the perfect opportunity to get to know someone better than you did before. This could be a fellow classmate, teammate, or even a friend of a friend. On the bright side, this can all be done through text, no face-to-face interaction or worry of upfront rejection.

And lastly,

Number 4: Accept defeat (or victory) and stay home

You maybe just decided your sweats and Netflix account served you better. 

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Kaycee Boofer

Northern Arizona '23

"Hello, everybody!" *Micheal Scott voice*. I'm an editorial intern and an undergraduate attending Northern Arizona University with a love for writing, reading, and movie references- if I'm not referring to one every ten minutes, something is wrong. Dogs, books, hopelessly romantic movies, and strawberry lemonade are some of the few things I couldn't live without. Somethings I can hopefully still enjoy while traveling the world in the future!
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