In a world where stress is an absolutely universal experience, where burnout is rampant and the pandemic-ending era still seems to be looming above us, you’d be surprised to learn that your unique traits and needs, like introversion and extroversion, can compel you to deal with stress in different manners. While some react to stress quickly and move ahead, others can dwell and let it invade their inner reality. This variation comes from differing emotional personalities, which might explain how introverts and extroverts practice stress management differently.
That said, how stress affects you personally is more about what drains you and what gives you energy. People tend to think of introverts as anti-social beings while extroverts as the life of the party, but that’s not an accurate way to look at it. The answer to whether extroverts are better at stress management than introverts depend on their methods of dealing.
How Can Extroverts Practice Mindful Stress Management?
When it comes to stress management, extroverts’ methods are the complete opposite of introverts. While extroverts require alone time, too much can actually drain them. Socialising is what restores their energy and fills their cup. So, it’s understandable when they seek company when stressed.
1. Sharing Their Troubles
Being the more social and communicative personality, extroverts flourish when around others. This also means that they’re vocal about their good times and their bad times, airing out their grievances rather than pushing them inward like introverts. Those who let off steam by expressing themselves are bound to suffer less anxiety, anger, and illnesses like hypertension and heart disease.
2. Seeking Stimulation
Extroverts are hungry for stimulation, which is one of the reasons why they seek interesting activities and companionship, to feed their outgoing personality. So, an extroverted student or professional would love to work in a coffee shop or restaurant surrounded by other people and be in the middle of human activity. Whereas an introvert would find such a setting over-stimulating. Being under stimulated leads extroverts to boredom while being overstimulated leads introverts to anxiety.
3. Find Opportunities To “Recharge”
As we mentioned above, dealing with stress is more dependent on what drains you and what recharges you. While social interactions drain introverts, extroverts feel drained when they have to work alone. They’re talkative and outgoing and activities like going out with friends and family, attending concerts, workshops, or food tastings, or even volunteering can help them recharge their batteries.
4. Mindfulness Practices For Extroverts
Meditation may seem more of an introverted activity for it encourages you to sit in silence and dwell in your inner world but there are ways that extroverts can reap the benefits as well. And while meditation may not seem like an extrovert’s cup of tea, starting with breathing exercises can help enhance your sense of well-being. Often used in Kundalini practices, the Breath of Fire technique can be significantly beneficial for your physical and mental health.
The breathing technique involves passive, normal inhalations, and powerful, rapid exhalations. This rhythmic, forced exhalation can help reduce stress, boost brain function, and improve respiratory health, abdominal muscles, and digestion. This type of breathing is ideal for competitive, extroverted A-type personalities who love a good challenge. Since Breath of Fire is about controlling your breath, type A’s will be drawn to this fiery practice.
If you’re still not convinced, try performing a form of moving meditation that zeroes on both breath and posture. Extroverts often need the rush of endorphins that comes from a sweaty workout session, and practicing a moving meditation can ensure the energy flows freely through your body. The coordinated movements and breathwork will nourish the tissues and organs while also calming the mind and finding a sense of peace.
We found that extroverts and introverts practice stress management differently, but their source of stress is also different in comparison. For extroverts, employing active and problem-focused coping mechanisms can help them positively deal with stress.