Almost everyone loves a good party or getting together with friends, but for some people the idea of spending time with people is just ‘exhausting’.
You probably know the difference between extroverts and introverts; extroverts are loud and brash the life of the party while introverts are quiet, more retiring people.
Or at least that’s the accepted wisdom. In fact introverts can be just as loud as extroverts and vice versa, the real difference is that extroverts are energised by being around people while introverts recharge in their own company.
Most people are in fact a mixture of both and it’s perfectly normal to need a break from people every now and again – these are called ‘introvert hangovers’.
According to blogger Shawna Courter on her blog Introvert, Dear the reason’s simple enough and has to do with how much energy we have for socialising.
Introverts have a more limited ration of energy available for socialising, compared to our more extroverted counterparts.
When we push past those reserves, we hit a tipping point where we go from being ‘fine’ to ‘definitely not okay’.
An ‘introvert’ hangover is, simply put, a withdrawal into oneself brought on by over-stimulation.
Don’t go thinking the idea of an introvert hangover is just a blogger’s bunkum there’s real science behind it.
Previous scientific studies have shown that introverts have a lot of neuronal activity in their reticular activating system, the area of the brain that deals with external stimuli and making introverts highly sensitive to external stimuli.
Meanwhile the opposite’s true for extroverts as well, who are less sensitive to incoming stimuli and therefore don’t get overwhelmed as quickly as introverts.
Unfortunately for introverts their hyper-sensitivity means they’re more likely to suffer from anxiety and depression.
As for the introvert hangover there’s only one cure Carter claims, ‘solitude’ and don’t worry about taking time out for yourself.