On the value of surrounding oneself with the right people.

Let the records indicate, I am a better human being when surrounded by positive human beings.

As an introvert, I require time to recharge away from, and in the immediate aftermath of, scenarios requiring a good deal of high-energy social interactions. A loud party, a large group activity where I’m expected to or need to make extended amounts of small talk – anything like that, where I need to process and recharge on my own.

This recharging time can come in two flavors. One outcome, in the instance of a high-stress scenario or one interlaced with people or scenes I find difficult to relate to or otherwise psychologically or emotionally draining, leaves my personal recharge time feeling largely negative, as though I’m reviewing a list of reasons why I’m not fit to engage with society in a healthy way, and reinforcing the already maladaptive mindset that I’m just ever so slightly out of sync with the rest of the world and I’m just kind of observing other peoples’ good moments without being able to incorporate myself into them or being invited to do so.

On the other end of the spectrum, when I find myself, whether by accident or design, surrounded by folks with whom conversations roll easily, and there is obvious genuine mutual affection (be it romantic, friendship, or any level of deliberately positive energy), or from whom I feel no pressure to conform or to act in a certain way or otherwise adjust by behaviors, I come out of it still needing to recharge, but to do so in a way that almost multiplies the positivity experienced. I’m happy, reflective, and filled with appreciation and gratitude and love for everyone and everything who helped create the situation.

It is easy for me to experience either of those scenarios – it seems like an obvious choice for an outside observer: would you rather do Activity A which will leave you feeling sad and isolated, or would you rather do Activity B, which leaves you feeling appreciated, loved, and fulfilled?

Seems like a good question to ask myself moving forward, doesn’t it?

I had a great time today, and it was in large part due to choosing the correct people to invest in and letting them choose to invest in me, or not, as they saw fit.


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