Social fatigue, or social exhaustion, is when you’re drained or burnt out by social interactions or relationships. When you feel social fatigue, you may desire some alone time or to spend time doing activities that don’t involve other people. Social fatigue can cause you to feel more isolated or burnt out than having relationships that truly fulfill you.
This article will discuss some signs of social fatigue and how to stop it!
4 Signs of Social Fatigue
Are you experiencing social fatigue? Introverts mainly share social fatigue—however, people of all personality types can experience social fatigue. Here’s how you know:
- You dread going out. Perhaps you resist the thought of going out and would rather cuddle in bed watching funny videos.
- All you think about is going home, even at a party or networking event.
- You feel stressed while interacting. Other people no longer “recharge” you.
- You experience social overthinking. “What-if” scenarios constantly pop up in your head.
5 Simple Ways To Overcome Social Fatigue
Realize Your Triggers
Do you often lump all of your social interactions into one big bucket? For example, you might tell yourself, “Oh, I’m socially awkward. I dread all social interactions!”
In reality, not all social interactions are created equal.
Let’s separate your idea of social interactions into energizing and draining social interactions.
Action Step: Pull out a pen and paper and write about the following:
- Who are the people that fill you up?
- Who drains you?
- What situations or places make you feel good?
- What situations or places drain you?
Block and Barrier
If you know the places that drain you faster, you have to begin to “block and barrier” those situations from your schedule.
For example, if you know that loud bars and venues drain your energy, you might want to decline your next invitation to a downtown night gathering. Or, if you feel drained being around toxic people, consider skipping your next meetup.
Nothing is worse than going into a place or being with someone draining you on a half-empty battery.
Action Step: First, take a look at your calendar. Do you have to do all the things you’re dreading? Is there a friend you can say no to? Find one thing this week that will likely give you social fatigue and replace it with something recharging.
Make Small Social Changes
You don’t have to go big. Even the smallest social change can help recharge or prevent your battery from being drained. For example, you could show up a little bit early or late at a place that drains you.
Action Step: Get a pen and paper and write down some small changes you can implement to improve social interactions. For example, instead of asking boring, typical conversations starters, you can instead ask:
- Have you been working on anything exciting recently?
- Have any personal passion projects?
- Have any fun plans this weekend?
- Traveling anywhere fun this year?
Or, try one of these other ideas:
- Show up with a friend that makes you feel better.
- Make plans that start during the event, so you have an excuse to leave early.
- Bring your favorite book or a pair of earbuds so you can calm down during high-stress times.
- Get familiar with personality types to bring up a new conversation topic.
Bring A Wingman Or A Wingwoman
You can prevent social fatigue if you’re with someone who supports you. If you can, think about someone you work with or a friend who has your back.
During social fatigue situations, your wing person should be your go-to person who can act as your “life buoy” and cheer you up, help you feel positive, or even make you laugh.
This works well if you have an extroverted friend who loves making conversation. Tell them when and how you get social fatigue and ask them to help.
Action Step: You can send this article to your friend and say, “You’re my amazing extroverted friend! Can you help me prevent my social fatigue?”
Remember Your Why
Sometimes, we can go into social interactions, forgetting what brought us there in the first place. If you want to:
- Meet a new mentor
- Find your soulmate
- Make new friends, or
- Build deeper relationships
…That “why” can get you through social fatigue.
A study conducted by Harvard University followed students for over 80 years. The results revealed that the happiest students had deep, meaningful relationships. So don’t be so hard on yourself if you make a social mishap or feel anxious. Remember that if you’re socializing or going out with people, it’s because you’re trying to build a beautiful relationship.
Being grounded and centered on that “why” will help you get through social fatigue because there’s a reason that you’re doing it.
You Are Not Alone!
We are so honored to help you find your own personal solution to social fatigue! If you are struggling to find the help you need, please note that all content found on this website is not to be considered professional medical advice. It is always best to consult a doctor or licensed therapist with any questions or concerns in regards to your physical or mental health. For a good resource for therapists, you can check out Mental Health America’s helpful list.
If you have social fatigue, you are not alone. Mastering your social skills and being a better communicator can help you feel less social fatigue. You can also further your knowledge by reading these 10 Steps To Conquering Your Phone Anxiety to give you some social skill tips over the phone!