I'm a stage performer and an introvert—here's how I deal
Whenever I tell someone that I’m an introvert, they almost always assume the same thing: I must be some kind of Boo Radley type who prefers to live as a recluse. Well, I am here to set the record straight, perhaps disappoint a few people, and assure all others that this is simply not true. Being an introvert does not mean that I hate people, or that I’m antisocial. It doesn’t even necessarily mean that I’m shy! Being an introvert means simply this: People tire me out.
Extroverts thrive off of social interaction. When they are surrounded by a lot of people, it gets them hyped up and really excited. Introverts are the exact opposite. Being around a lot of people saps them of energy, rather than invigorating them. When I explain this to people and then tell them that my passion is to sing and dance live in front of crowds, I can almost see the little thought bubble with the big question mark rise above their heads.
As a performer, my introversion is sometimes hard to deal with, but it’s not impossible! In order to get myself ready for a performance, I have a routine that I try to stick to. I have a very similar routine for getting ready to go out with a lot of people or go to a party. Here are my personal steps to keep myself sane around crowds.
Prepare in advance
The night before a show, I always gather all necessary supplies (make up, shoes, etc.) and give myself a big window to prepare so that you I can take my time getting ready. (I also apply a generous amount of foundation to offset your sun-starved skin. House lights are no joke!)
I also play calming music and conserve my energy as I get ready, until about half an hour before I’m getting ready to go on. At the half hour mark, I play some hyping up music and do some vocal and physical warm ups to get myblood flowing
Enjoy the show. Really!
Have SO much fun, go all out, and live in the moment!! (This is the most important of all the steps. If this one doesn’t happen, the rest of it has all gone to waste. Love what you do.)
Give yourself time and space to wind down afterwards
After the excitement of the show, I take time to express my gratitude and make the appropriate goodbyes until most people have left. Once I’m home, I take off my make- up and chill out. I spend at least half an hour before I go to sleep decompressing: Reading, watching Netflix, listening to music, online shopping eating chocolate, etc.
The next day I take it easy, if that’s possible, and allow myself as much alone time as I desire. I sometimes need a whole day to recover.
I hope that this helps all you other introverts out there know that you’re not alone and that you can totally figure out ways to party hard and get psyched with lots of other people without totally draining yourself. And for all you extroverts out there, we introverts still love you. We’ll still party with you, you just have to give us some time to nap before and after.