With every day, 2020 seems to provide more reason to turn inward. And beyond the stressful news cycle and the unprecedented challenge of the pandemic, there's also the change in season that will have all of us, introverted or not, necessarily spending more time indoors, and therefore more time with ourselves. The introverts among us are those of us who are recharged by alone time, while extroverts draw energy from being around people.
We live in an extrovert's world, and being loud can be mistaken for being confident, or happy, but a quiet approach and need for solitary time isn't a flaw—it's a gift. It turns out there's science behind our preferences. The neurotransmitter dopamine is like a hit of energy—when we take risks or meet new people, we get a hit of dopamine, and this makes extroverts feel great. But introverts are more sensitive to dopamine and can very quickly become overstimulated.
Your best bet as an introvert this harvest season? Find ways to recharge that work for you. You can use music to create a bubble of peace, or escape to a quiet park on a break. You can read or write—there's no better company for an introvert than a good book—or just be alone with your thoughts. You can treat yourself to a collection of introvert-themed mugs and other self-care items. Or, if you're looking for a thoughtful way to dedicate yourself to recharging, look no further than the monthly subscription box Introverts Retreat, founded by Shereen Jegtvig Lehman.
Before Introverts Retreat, Shereen was a health and nutrition writer and part-time medical reporter but found herself burning out. "My daughter got me interested in subscription boxes when she started Fearless Nail Art, and after giving it some thought, I decided that catering to introverted women would be fun," she says. "That was back in 2017."
Fast-forward to today, and Introverts Retreat is a family business. Shereen's daughter consults with her, and her son John created their logo. Both of her children also help with fulfillment. But, if Shereen is being honest, part of what makes Introvert's Retreat different is that it's by an introvert for introverts—meaning, she's not exactly over-eager to share the personal details of her life!
But managing life as an introvert in an extrovert's world? That she'll talk about: "Introverts need time to relax and recharge and recover from too much human interaction," Shereen explains. "An Introverts Retreat subscription box has items that make for some perfectly introverted 'me time.' Plus, you don't have to go out shopping to get all those goodies. Many subscribers have told me the box is a great pick-me-up and reminds them to take care of themselves."
Not that you have to be an introvert to love one of their boxes. But with candles called "Love Me Enough to Leave Me Alone" or bath salts called "Done for the Day, Too Much Peopling," it certainly wouldn't hurt to be in on the introverted theme. Shereen says, "If those names make sense to you and maybe make you smile, then Introverts Retreat is totally for you!"
Introvert's Retreat is more than just introvert-themed candles and bath salts, however—if you're a book box kind of person, rest assured that each box comes with a novel written by a female author in the subscriber's genre of choice (including general fiction, romance novel, mystery/thriller, and more).
Here's how the offerings break down:
The Read Box includes the novel and bookmark, plus you'll receive a gourmet treat from either Sweet on Vermont or Southbury Baking Company, plus your choice of hot beverage: ground coffee from Native American Coffee, loose leaf tea from the Octavia Tea Company, or hot cocoa from Moonstruck Chocolate Company.
The Read & Relax Box includes the novel and bookmark, plus a full-size 7oz. scented soy candle from Introverts Retreat Comfort Candles line and 8oz. of bath salts or a 4oz. bar of handmade scented soup. Our candles, bath salts, and soap all feature fun introvert-theme names such as "Alone Time is Relaxing Time" or "Done for the Day (Too Much Peopleing)."
The Read, Relax & Recharge Box has the novel, bookmark, snack, beverage, candle, bath salts or bar of soap, plus one additional bath or body care item. This box has everything you need for the perfect introverted day!
Already thinking about ordering your first box? Or thinking that Introverts Retreat might make for a great gift? You're not alone. Shereen has seen her business triple in 2020 with the pandemic — providing ways for her young adult children to support themselves in the wake of COVID-19 layoffs from their jobs.