How to Thrive as an Introvert in College

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By Olivia Hancock

Olivia is a apart of the TLC College Ambassador Program and attends North Carolina A&T University.

For introverted individuals like myself- who very simply put are people who gain energy from being alone and lose energy in stimulating environments - university life can be hard. From living in dorm rooms with roommates to school events every weekend, college is a consistent center for socialization. When you’re a reserved person, finding your place and figuring out how to spread your wings on campus among thousands of social butterflies (without sacrificing your sanity) seems like a daunting task. But the truth is, even the the most shy collegiate can thrive during their pursuit of a degree. Here’s a real rundown on how you can make sure you thrive as a student.

1. Get connected with people whose interests match yours

Introverts often consider short-lived, surface level friendships unfulfilling, so make an effort to connect with your peers on a deeper level. If you find yourself clicking with someone, invite them out for coffee near campus or meet up with them after class. There’s nothing better than finding a real friend who understands your quirks. Having a few friends that you truly mesh with makes the college experience easier.

2. Push yourself to do something outside of your comfort zone

Owning your quiet nature is completely applaudable, but limiting yourself because of it isn’t. These four years are the time to try new things and develop as a person. Go to a party, attend a tailgate or join an organization that aligns with your hobbies.

3. Pursue your passion projects

College is the perfect opportunity to pour into yourself and do you, and that’s the ideal situation for an introvert. When you’re engaging in some alone time, be productive and make those golden ideas a reality. No matter if it’s a professional or personal goal, making it a point to work on something you’re passionate about will help make the noise of being at a university less overwhelming.

4. Find your happy place

Striking a balance between socializing and flying solo is tough but finding time to recharge is essential for quieter personality types. Whether it’s the peaceful lounge in the lobby of your dorm or the hidden nook in a library that you call your own, locate that one place you can go and just do your own thing. It’s amazing how relaxing it is to have a spot you can run to when you need some time alone.