This post was written for Daily Hive by Yemidale Ajayi
If Vancouver was a human being, she would be an introvert. Rather than impose her presence on you, her unique personality would quietly reveal itself to those who are interested in finding it.
But for those of us who are introverts as well, making the most of this city can be difficult. So how does a socially passive person find adventure in a city that requires you to introduce yourself first and carry the conversation?
Take a look below for our introvert’s guide to Vancouver.
For people like me who easily get caught up in their routine and can lose a whole month to a haze of work, bed, and Netflix; sometimes we need a reminder to leave the house every once in a while.
It could be as simple as a stroll in Gastown. Leaving the house for the sole purpose of looking at the city is the best way to become acquainted with it. You’ll find small restaurants, strange shows, and random events. If you are withdrawn, observation is your key to the city. Walk without earphones in and let Vancouver reach your senses.
When people are on vacation in a new city, they are like kids at a candy store. They have so much to experience and so little time to do it. So why not do the same with Vancouver?
Take a hike at Capilano or a horse drawn tour at Stanley Park. Visit Science World again, and take pictures at Granville Island. Pick a random stop on the SkyTrain and embrace getting lost like you would as a tourist. Put on your rose tinted glasses for a day and treat the city like you don’t live here.
If being a social butterfly doesn’t come naturally to you, fake it. Don’t be a flake. It can be easy to shy away and avoid trying new things, which is why you need to commit yourself to doing them.
Try committing yourself to a random social event. Push yourself to do that activity you never got around to. Make those social commitments you can’t get out of. Go to that hockey game or concert, you had found an excuse to avoid. You could be stepping out of your comfort zone once a month or a few times a year, but some of your most memorable experiences will come from following through with plans you would normally find an excuse to get out of.
Be willing to be uncomfortable and step out of your comfort zone. Embrace your awkwardness because it’s a part of who you are. It might be a part of your charm. Drag yourself to that party or that club. Join Meetups and find people with similar interests. Have weird, strange and embarrassing moments. They will become funny stories.
Ultimately, the best way to get to know a city is through its people. I know for my fellow introverts that is a huge challenge. Making that first move is difficult, but the people who live in Vancouver are the ones who know it best. Ask people about what they like to do and their favourite places to go in the city. It all starts with a “hi” and a smile.