Today I thought I would share the third (and likely final) part of my ‘Introducing the Blogger’ series. As I detailed in my previous two parts, I’m somewhat of an introvert and I also suffer from Social Anxiety to a mild degree. There are a lot of misconceptions out there about what introversion really is, how social anxiety affects your life, and what it’s like to be shy. I also mentioned before about how I want to get more involved this year. This post will outline how anyone can get involved and have great experiences on campus!
So what do these terms mean? Well, shyness, introversion and social anxiety are all deeply connected but separate concepts. I personally believe shyness is a malleable trait, something that changes the more you work at it. The more you talk to people, the less shy you feel.
Introversion on the other hand is a subconscious preference – if you are introverted like me, you generally prefer spending time alone, you enjoy social outings- but with close friends instead of a big group, you observe instead of directly participating, etc. One of the easiest ways to tell if you are an introvert or extravert is this – if you feel mentally recharged when you are at home or in your safe space, you might be an introvert. If you feel mentally recharged when you are engaging with other people, you are likely an extrovert.
Social anxiety really makes things interesting because it adds discomfort and/or fear to social interactions. Thankfully through counseling I’ve been able to reduce my symptoms to a more manageable state. I encourage anyone suffering or that believes they might be suffering from social anxiety to reach out for help. You can manage your symptoms and have a healthy social life.
So how does it affect getting involved at school? I think it affects it a lot. I think it takes more effort to get involved when you are an introvert. One might feel too intimidated to get involved, not realizing how many options there are. It’s so important to research and find clubs and events that relate to you. Don’t feel pressured to go to pub night if it’s not your thing. And don’t panic if you don’t make friends right away. The process sometimes takes longer if you are an introvert or shy, and hey, it’s worth the wait to find good friends!
Below are some of my favourite introvert-friendly clubs. For the complete list of available clubs, I encourage you to check out YU Connect.
M’s Top 5 Introvert Friendly Clubs
Comment below to share your experiences or to tell me which clubs you are interested in 🙂