Are you bashful, quiet and shy? Do you eye the exit at parties? Do you prefer being alone? If that’s the case, you may be an introvert.
In college, where many of these introverts get anxious about classes, hope they don’t have to converse with strangers and pray to get a seat in the back row, it turns out online classes can pose just as much of a struggle. After speaking with students and professors at the University of Georgia, here is an introvert’s guide to making it through online classes.
Choose your classes wisely
If you get anxious at the thought of presenting to your classmates on Zoom or having to do virtual group work, save yourself from the anxiety by researching the class and looking at the syllabus before you register.
“Know who you are, and take classes that will play to your strong suits,” said Anthony Madonna, an associate professor of political science in UGA’s School of Public and International Affairs.
De-stress before class
Going to a class you dislike can be nerve-wracking. To combat that, do something before class that relieves your stress, such as listening to a favorite song, watching a motivational speaker or journaling.
If you attend your online classes from your bedroom, it may help to have a change of scenery and some fresh air. Budget some time before class to get outside, take a walk and clear your mind.
Create a routine
With online classes, it can be easy to fall out of a routine, which can amplify anxiety. Creating a routine adds structure to your day, and sticking to it gives you a better idea of what to expect every day.
Madonna said although virtual classes “have been pretty awkward for everyone,” he thinks routine helps all students and is “especially beneficial for introverts.”
Take advantage of written discussions
Most professors of online classes make students participate through written discussions. Take this chance to make your own voice heard. Written discussion allows introverts to think through the topic and relay their feelings in a form that is easier for them.
“I actually enjoy virtual classes because you are able to type out answers in the chat window if you want,” said third-year journalism major Carrie Jordan. “Speaking in front of a class has always made me extremely anxious, so the ability to type answers helps me a lot.”
After finishing a class that pushes your limits, reward yourself with your favorite drink, grab a snack or listen to your favorite playlist. Just do something that you love to reward yourself for making it through another class.