Should You Spend New Year's Alone or at a Party? Take the Quiz

Not everyone likes to spend the holidays with a crowd.
Being alone at New Year's might just be your thing. Getty / Guido Mieth

Some people with social anxiety disorder (SAD) are also introverts, which means that they need time alone in order to gather mental energy. On the other hand, some of those with SAD are actually extroverts; they crave social stimulation but have anxiety or panic attacks when in social or performance situations.

If you've got social anxiety and you are trying to decide whether to have a quiet night in on New Year's Eve or spend the night out dancing the night away at a bash, it can be helpful to figure out whether you lean more toward introversion or extroversion.

Below is a quick quiz that you can use to help figure this out. Read each scenario and decide which of the descriptions best fits you.

Imagine yourself out at  New Year's Eve party. Which of the following is most likely to describe how you would be feeling?

A. The energy in this room has got me really revved up. I feel so energized. I love being in a crowd like this, it's just too bad I get really scared trying to talk to people.

B. It's the same every time. I get into a situation like this and just want to go hide in a closet somewhere. It's too overwhelming being around all these people, and I am too anxious to even talk to anyone. I feel totally drained after the first hour and it's not just my anxiety; it feels like I just need to be alone with my thoughts.

Imagine meeting someone for the first time at the party. Which would describe your behavior best?

A. I would probably wait nervously with people I already know, hoping to be introduced to the newcomer, but not confident enough to make the introduction myself.

I might smile when introduced and say “Nice to meet you," hoping that she might lead the conversation so I could learn more about her.

B. Meeting new people can be overwhelming, so I certainly wouldn't be pushing my way over for an introduction. I would be polite through the introduction, but wouldn't feel comfortable bantering with the new person in front of the group.

Imagine the group is playing party games at the New Year's Eve party. Which would describe you best?

A. I would enjoy playing loud and fun games with everyone, but I’m too nervous when it comes to my turn. I wish I could relax more because I really the group activities like that.

B. I hate when the group decides everyone needs to participate in a game. I just find it so draining to be involved in something like that, and I'm too anxious to even participate fully. I usually try to get out of those things.

You are at a house party for New Year's Eve and the doorbell rings. You are closest to the door, what would you be thinking?

A. I wonder who might have arrived? I am really curious to say hello and have more people join the fun, but at the same time I'm so nervous to be the one to welcome anyone to the party. I take my time and eventually open the door.

B. I am already exhausted from attempting to make small talk for an hour – do I really have to be the one to open this door? I also might make a fool of myself or say the wrong thing.

Maybe I'll just let someone else handle it.

Imagine you choose to stay home alone at New ​Years. Which would you most likely be thinking?

A. It’s kind of boring being at home alone, but at least I am not full of anxiety. I do miss the energy of being out with other people. I wonder what they are doing. I feel a bit envious of everyone out at their parties.

B. I just love being at home alone like this. I've got a great book to read, and can watch television if I want. It would be kind of nice to chat one-on-one with someone, but I'm too anxious to call.

Now, add up all of your "A" and "B" answers. If you've got more "As" than "Bs" then you are leaning toward being an extrovert, and if you've got more "Bs" than "As" then you are leaning toward being an introvert. Extroverts are more likely to prefer being out at a party with a large group, while introverts might prefer staying at home or with just one friend.

In either case, if you also suffer with social anxiety, that is going to impede your ability to enjoy yourself on New Year's Eve. If you have not already sought help for your anxiety, the new year is a great time to make a resolution to do so.

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