7 Reasons Why Book-Loving Introverts Are Loving The Lockdown
Come on now. You can admit it! You’re devastated by the catastrophic loss of life around the world as a result of the pandemic. You feel profoundly for the families and loved ones of those who have lost their lives. You feel terrible for those who have felt a lasting impact in quality of life as a result of the COVID-19 virus. And you likewise have tremendous empathy for those who have lost money or jobs as a result of the pandemic and subsequent lockdown, or who have had to shutter their small businesses. And while the national lockdown has been lifted (for now) huge spikes in infection rates have resulted in widespread local lockdowns that have isolated people from friends, family and work colleagues.
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At the same time, however, book-loving introverts must confess that the lockdown (if not the pandemic) has actually brought with it some advantages. And it doesn’t make you a monster to acknowledge and celebrate them. In this profoundly negative time, a time of social division, political discord and economic turmoil, I think it’s not only acceptable but incumbent upon us to mine the current situation for whatever positives we can get. And at a time when we’re all experiencing turmoil at work and disruption at home, appreciating those positives can actually help us end the year on a positive note.
So, let’s get to it…
We can all get some serious reading done
Let’s cut right to the chase. One of the biggest problems for book lovers is dedicating their time, energy and hard-earned money to line their shelves with gorgeous new tomes… but never having the time to read them.
The lack of social obligations (and the time saved by not having to commute because many of us are working from home) has freed up a lot of leisure time in which we’ve been able to work through our colossal reading lists. We’ve had the opportunity to work through that huge pile of books that we thought we’d never get through and feared would remain untouched on our shelves forever. We’ve been able to explore new titles, new authors and new genres. And we’ve been able to step outside of our comfort zones, while still having those old favourites to fall back on. Those familiar tomes are like a comfy pair of slippers for the mind.
Awesome literary bargains
Whether you’re adding stacks of physical books to your collection or loading up on goodies for your e-reader, the past few months have been an abundance of bargains as stores throw a range of attractive promotions to make things easier for cash-strapped customers, and the temporarily cash-strapped put their pre-loved books up for sale on eBay, Amazon Marketplace, Music Magpie and the like.
The net gain for book lovers is that they get to bag some literary bargains with which to occupy their newfound abundance of free time.
Even our outdoor activities give us an opportunity to read
Of course, even the most dedicated introvert understands the need to get out of the house every day, even if it’s only for a brisk walk or a potter around in the garden. In fact, a nice long walk can be just the mood booster you need in these inherently gloomy times. It not only gives you the chance to burn some calories and get your heartrate up, it also floods the brain with feel good chemicals and even boosts your immune system.
And while many of us like to use a long walk as an opportunity to meditate and relax with our thoughts, a good long walk can also be an opportunity to expand your literary prowess. Many voracious readers have turned to audiobooks as a source of entertainment and edification during the pandemic, with many of us taking the plunge and opening Audible accounts to get a daily dose of literature into our ears. A good book and a long walk can be a great pick-me-up after a long and stressful workday and ensure that you can wind down and click out of work mode when you return home. Even if the home and the workplace have become the same space during lockdown.
No more workplace gossip
It’s not that introverts don’t like people… we just value quality over quantity in our social interactions. And most introverts have little time or tolerance for the petty politics and gossip of the workplace. They just want to do their job and engage in pleasant interactions with their colleague without feeling like they have to pick sides or speak ill of anyone. Gossip may seem like a fun distraction from the monotony of the workplace for some. But for others, it’s at best an irritating bore and at worst detrimental to their mental health.
While working from home is its own brand of a mixed blessing, at least it affords us the opportunity to do our jobs without getting embroiled in gossip and intra-office politics.
You no longer feel bad about ducking out of social obligations
Sure, introverts love having fun with their friends. But there are some kinds of social occasions (like those involving loud music, flashing lights and having to weave through legions of doddering drunks like you’re reenacting scenes from Shaun of the Dead) that we prefer to eschew. And with lockdowns in place over much of the country, we have a legitimate excuse to politely decline raucous nights out and the kinds of boozy get-togethers where you have to ensure Andy from marketing showering your ear with spittle as he recounts the reasons why Disney ruined the Star Wars franchise.
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You don’t need to go shopping
There are many who regard shopping as a fun leisure activity. But for introverts, it’s a necessity… and a fairly tedious one at that. There are many of us who don’t much relish the idea of darting through crowded shopping centres to get to Waterstones or hauling backs through teeming masses.
The beauty of living under a lockdown in the digital age is that we can get pretty much anything our hearts desire delivered to our doors. Leaving us with very little reason to brave the crowded shopping centres. Let’s face it, the retail experience is overrated anyway. And the constant anxiety that comes with ensuring that you’re socially distanced and far enough away from the plonkers who just plain refuse to wear masks is something that we can all do without.
Whether you’re after the latest hardback or a brand new paid of reading glasses with super cute designer frames, you can buy online instead of going to a store. And in the vast majority of cases, you can save money while also protecting your health and wellbeing.
You’re saving the money that might have gone on impulse purchases
One of the best things about life under lockdown is that you don’t go out unless you really need to. And that can almost certainly save you money. When you work in an office or physical premises, you find that you accrue all kinds of sundry expenses that add up to a whole lot by the end of the month. From that latte at your favourite coffee shop to make Monday morning bearable to the bars of chocolate at the vending machine when things get stressful just before lunch time to the fast food lunch you get for “fat Friday”. All of which are avoided when circumstances dictate that you need to work from home.
So you can spend all that money on the things that really matter!
Disclaimer: This is a contributed post but I agree with it wholeheartedly.