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Rise of the Introvert and Fall of the Extrovert in the current COVID’19 crisis

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How many times have you felt the need, the urge, and the desire to just sleep on your bed and keep looking at the ceiling? Then stare at the fan while working through your nails.
Just stay indoors for hours with the TV remote in your hand and keep glancing at the TV screen as you flip through channels without a rational reason as if something will magically emerge from it.
Have only one or two people to confide to and discuss your problems as that is how you see life as a problem and others should solve that problem for you….
When have you last had a conversation with a stranger without putting your head down and a fake/ awkward smile to take away that so-called awkward encounter that you experience whenever you see into the eye of a new person?
How you feel so socially awkward if in a room full of strangers and want to just go back to your room and lock yourself and read a book.
Basically felt the need to reason your mind in order to attain strength to action/ face people.
When you have either put up a smile to or even a frown to cover your actual feelings of insecurity, jealously, low confidence and primarily low self-esteem/self-worth
The above qualities highlight the life of an introvert in terms of day to day affairs.
Now let’s please understand there is a big difference between a highly intelligent person, an introvert and an extrovert.
A highly intelligent person can be social when need be and be a recluse when need be.
The company should be stimulating either intellectually or spiritually else the person will not engage in mundane conversations.
They by default are refined and deep to engage in the routine. So they can escape into their world of perpetual innovation and return to normalcy when they feel the need to reengage with peers, family, colleagues, friends, etc. In this regard, they confide in a few people too but that is out of choice, not fear or antisocial skills like an introvert.
Now the extroverts are all about people, for people, and by people – they embody the democratic dogma, in fact, they subscribe to it wholeheartedly to some extent unabashedly. They need enough action in order to reason the mind. It doesn’t matter whether its reasonable action or just noise, they need to be engaged. To be sure, their engagement quotient, let’s call it (EGQ), is at the highest.
And, when you compare this to an introvert, well, the difference is glaring. They need chaos, the arguments, the laughs, the tears etc. in order to survive. They are very social by default.
The word ‘social distancing’ is like a disease for extroverts. So when the current COVID’19 crisis has emerged the fall of the extrovert is inevitable. In order to help cope up with this fall and to stay ‘sane’, one and all should follow the life of the introverts.
The mind is the most fragile, beautiful tool and your best friend. It can also turn out to be your worst enemy if you allow it to do so. So training the mind to take it one day at a time and doing the repetitive tasks every day is the most critical thing to live within this crisis. Our biology or better still our evolutionary biology that allows us to think in larger quantities to save us the panic and the anxiety of passing time!
When it comes to training or even conditioning the mind in such a situation the highly intelligent people are in a safe zone as they never dwell in extremes even in normal situations. They can adapt to what comes around their way. They can camouflage or ‘emotionally adapt’ and just be.
Let’s flip and talk about the other extreme which is extroverts.
It’s time for them to introspect, reflect, and then finally action, so basically learn from the introverts.
It is okay to just sit in one place and think and think and think and not action
It is absolutely fine not to stare at the news and discuss news reports with 10 different people and make a scene about a scene that is already quite a scene.
It is fine to not go overboard with emotions for a change and give extreme reactions to everything. It is fine for a change to cover up those emotions and have them bottled and just sleep over them rather than spit it out always.
It is fine to be confined to one room and under one roof as long as you are with people who support you or even breathe with you or even if you are alone and breathing in sync.
Its fine to just breathe in and breathe out at a normal pace instead of pacing in and out of one room to the other screeching and whining.
It’s fine to eat the same thing at the same spot at the same time every day with a smile on your face even if it pains you a bit.
Since extroverts form a major of us, it’s time to look at introverts which make a lesser of us as highly intelligent people are anyway like close to negligible.
So let’s not look at an introvert like a boring and self immersed person doing the same thing, again and again, every day but as an individual who has indeed shown us a way to live a steady life in this moment of crisis. Let’s embrace their qualities just like they embrace the extroverts’ qualities during the so-called normal times. Let’s celebrate the ‘new normal’ with the introverts.
We can learn from even a virus if we want to so why not learn and then implement the learning of patience, endurance, and well, to just be from every 10th person who could supposedly be an introvert!

About the Author:

Trishna Patnaik, a BSc (in Life Sciences) and MBA (in Marketing) by qualification but an artist by choice. A self-taught artist based in Mumbai, Trishna has been practising art for over 14 years. After she had a professional stint in various reputed corporates, she realised that she wanted to do something more meaningful. She found her true calling in her passion that is painting. Trishna is now a full-time professional painter pursuing her passion to create and explore to the fullest. She says, “It’s a road less travelled but a journey that I look forward to everyday.” Trishna also conducts painting workshops across Mumbai and other metropolitan cities of India. Trishna is an art therapist and healer. She works with clients on a one on one basis in Mumbai. Trishna fancies the art of expressive writing and creative writing and is dappling her hands in that too, to soak in the experience and have an engagement with readers, wanderers and thinkers. 

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