My fiancee refers to me as a closet introvert. As a consultant, I am in a field that demands me to be gregarious, talkative, very social, and confident in all social situations. Being in large groups of people, meeting new people, and having to have long conversations with people make me uncomfortable and frankly completely wear me out. I've managed to come up with a few things that help me professionally that I hope will help you in college.
I vividly remember moving into my dorm in college and being completly nervous. One thing I did do before I moved in was I joined our dorm facebook group (I'm guessing if we had one a decade ago, you have one too). I got a chance to check out who would be on my floor and identify a few people that I wanted to get to know. I also got in touch with my future roommate and we skyped a couple time before we moved in. Move in day was awash with people who were way too happy to meet me and know all about me. Not only that, but in the afternoon we had new student orientation which was so much worse. The first week of college will be the most overwhelming socially. If you can survive that, the rest is a piece of cake. Don't shy away from it though, I met some of my best friends the second day of college. One thing that was vital was that I found a quiet place that was all mine. It took some searching, but there was a study room on my floor that was rarely used and had a huge window overlooking the mountains. I could go in with some music and lock the door. Sitting in silence really helped me out. I also could talk to new people and put myself in situations that were uncomfortable for me knowing I had an escape if I needed it.
But don't hang out in your quiet place too often though. College is all about meeting new people and finding people who will be your best friends. In high school, people are usually friends by convenience since there aren't many to choose from. College is going to be a whole other experience, because you are going to have so many chances to meet and get to know people who are drastically different from yourself. Don't avoid chances to meet people by pigeon holing yourself into being an introvert. You can still be social and be an introvert. You just need to realize that some alone time (or whatever your recharging method is) is needed. As a fellow introvert, I loved college. I created an amazing group of friends who I would have never met otherwise and I wouldn't change a thing.
Allison recommends the following next steps:
- Get to know your future roommate (talk about habits and identify potential problems)
- Find a place that is yours where you can get away and recharge
- (If possible) research who you would potentially room with.