On finding a bit of quiet.
I’ve been reading Susan Cain’s ‘Quiet’ recently, which is a brilliant book on introversion that I’d completely recommend reading — and there’s a little section on ‘restorative niches’ in one of the last chapters of the book that really stood out to me. Many introverts find themselves acting more extroverted when a situation calls for it — particularly when at work, networking or generally socialising. A restorative niche is the place you can go when you want to return to your true self — and it can be a physical place, a certain activity or just a space of time carved out to relax. The sort of places and things you long for when you feel unsettled, drained or sensitive.
I work in an open office full of extroverts, which means I’m constantly around a lot of chatty people. It’s fun, but can be super draining… and I always feel a bit guilty when I ‘escape’ during a lunchtime to recharge. Quiet has taught me that these times aren’t bad or odd, but are rather important moments that I need to take to make sure I have energy to see me through the afternoon. And rather than being something I end up doing when I’m completely run down, they should become regular moments that I schedule throughout my work week.
Here are a few ways I’m planning to recharge this week:
– Treat myself to lunch in one of my favourite restaurants and read — Wander through the little artistic and vintage shops near my office — Spend one lunchtime catching up on blogs in a corner of a cafe — Book out a meeting room and spend some time concentrating on some important projects — Listen to a playlist of new music during a walk along the canal — Go for a quick swim
How do you spend your down time?
Originally published at quietlondoner.com on March 2, 2015.