An introvert's mind at night

Introverts have busy brains at any time of the day. But at night our mind goes into overdrive. Of course, this can be very inconvenient when we have to get up early in the morning. But it’s more than that.

Our nighttime mental Olympics can leave us fatigued and on edge, especially when our thoughts are more self-critical than constructive. Fortunately, our brain doesn’t always torture us at night.

Sometimes, it takes us on a magic carpet ride through our most delicious fantasies. We want to stay awake because our imagination grows louder late at night. We like to stay up listening to the thoughts that tell us our dreams really can come true.

There tend to be some recurring themes when it comes to what introverts think about late at night. Here are some of the most common thoughts that keep introverts awake:

What an Introvert Thinks About at Night

Feeling guilty about everything

We introverts are prone to guilt. I’m not sure whether this is a nurture or nature thing, but by the time we reach adulthood, guilt is our default emotion. We feel guilty about not going out enough, not talking enough, not being enough.

When we get up the courage to put our needs first, we feel guilty for being selfish. At night, our sense of guilt lurks in the corners of our bedroom and shouts at us from the shadows: “You can’t sleep now, you must stay up and feel bad about everything you’ve ever done!” it says with a crooked smile.

Trying to solve your greatest life struggle before bed

Like anyone else, we introverts have our problems. Some of these challenges are so complex, we can spend years trying to untangle them. Even though we know we didn’t find the magic solution the hundred other times we tried, we will still set out to solve our greatest life struggle right before bed.

Need to get up in seven hours? “Great,” says the introvert’s brain, “now is the perfect time to try to figure out your life’s purpose, and deconstruct your relationship with your parents.”

Fantasizing about your crush

This one is too tantalizing to resist. Romantic fantasies are like a late night treat for introverts. We wait all day to unwrap and savour them. Even though we know that they might rot our brain and leave us disappointed with the harsh reality we face in the morning, we just can’t help indulging our fantasies before we fall asleep.

Regretting something you did five years ago

Isn’t it great when you are all cozy in bed and your brain decides to drudge up a cringe-worthy memory from five years ago? It could be an embarrassing moment, a messy end to a relationship, or a goal you didn’t quite reach.

If you’re like a lot of introverts, the regret has to do with things you said or didn’t say. You feel bad that you couldn’t properly express how you felt in the past. Your brain tries to convince you to pay penance for your misgivings by reliving your regrets right before bed.

Imagining yourself being interviewed on T.V.

This might seem like more of an extroverted dream, but hear me out. Imagining ourselves being interviewed by Oprah is the ultimate fantasy for introverts who don’t feel comfortable talking about ourselves in real life. We secretly wish that people would ask us the right questions and validate our answers. The interview fantasy fulfills our desire to be heard and appreciated.

Having imaginary arguments

Introverts are known for hating conflict. But we can be fiercely argumentative … in our own head. Make an introvert angry, and you can bet we’ll be up late at night having imaginary conversations about the incident. We can be very assertive and convincing during our made-up arguments. In real life, we will avoid conflict until it’s absolutely crucial to speak up. Even then, we might just send a text instead.

Worrying about the whole world

Climate change, North Korea, the dwindling bee population, animal cruelty, human trafficking — these are just a few of the world issues that can keep introverts up at night.

I’ve noticed that, as I’ve gotten older, I worry more and more about what’s going on in the world around me. I feel guilty if I can’t find a recycling bin when I’m out, and I truly have been worried about the bees lately. I guess this is a good thing, but it’s not so great when you are trying to get a decent night’s sleep.

What about you?

What do you think about late at night, Innie Friend? Please feel free to share in the comments below. 🙂

Also, be sure to let us know what you think of my nephew Brandon’s new cartoon!



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