The dating scene is never easy. But it’s particularly hard if you’re an introverted personality type. For those who score an “I” preference according to Myers and Briggs, then the thought of going out and meeting up with multiple strangers for dates can be excruciatingly painful.
Putting yourself out there and dating as an Introvert is the opposite of what you’d like to be doing; sitting on the sofa in your quiet apartment, wearing sweatpants and reading your book. But if you want to find love, then you’re going to have to get out there and meet people — and this means stepping outside your comfort zone.
Dating as an Introvert doesn’t have to be a nightmare though; there are things you can do to make the whole experience easier and — dare we say it — even enjoyable. Here are some best tips for how to find love as an Introvert who hates dating.
Play to your strengths
As an Introvert dating, you may feel like a fish out of water. After all, dates are for fun, bubbly people with lots to say — right?
Let’s banish this mindset right away: you don’t have to be loud and talkative to have a successful date. As an Introvert, you have lots to offer. You’re focused, highly observant and a good listener — making you a great conversation partner.
Play to your strengths and pick a type of date that will really make you shine; something like a one-on-one date (preferably not in a loud, crowded bar) will give you a chance to really get to know your date, get chatting and connect.
You prefer to listen and ask thoughtful questions rather than talk at someone — which is actually great on a date because it shows off your curious and insightful nature.
If the idea of a sit-down date making conversation with a stranger sounds daunting, then you can always plan your date around an activity. Something like going to the theatre or a comedy night gives you a way of easing yourself into a date with someone new, and means you have a ready-made topic of conversation if you go for drinks afterwards.
Do what works for you and what feels right
Dating as an Introvert can be tough, but knowing what works for you and acting on this knowledge will make the whole process much easier and help you find love.
If you’re an Introvert who collects information through sensing (Myers and Briggs personality types ISTJ, ISTP, ISFJ, ISFP), then you tend to gather facts from your immediate environment and rely on the things you can see, feel and hear to inform you. Use this aspect of your personality to guide you — you’re observant and accurate when it comes to the little details. Trust this sensing function and what you’re experiencing when you’re on a date; if you’re enjoying yourself in the moment, it’s a good sign.
If you’re an Introvert who perceives information through intuition (Myers and Briggs personality types INTJ, INTP, INFJ, and INFP), then trusting your intuition is something you can use in your quest for love. Trust your instincts and listen to your gut: how does this person make you feel? If you’re finding deeper meaning in your date and you’re connecting with the person you’re on a date with, then run with it.
The same goes for your style of dating: do what feels right for you. Finding love can be difficult, and forcing yourself into uncomfortable situations and out on multiple weekly dates will only make it feel harder. Focus on dating fewer people rather than more — picking quality over quantity will help you build more meaningful connections. Take your dating journey at your own pace, and don’t be afraid to take a break if you need to.
If dating apps and pre-planned dates are becoming too stressful, then be open to the possibility of meeting someone organically — through mutual friends, hobbies or even just bumping into someone in a coffee shop. Love is often found in unexpected places.
Embrace technology and meet new people online
If the idea of sitting in a crowded bar shouting across the music to a blind date sounds traumatic to you, then why not try meeting new people online?
Technology has plenty of pros and cons, but one of the things it has given us is a way of dating and meeting people that isn’t completely anxiety-triggering for those of us who are Introverts. And there are many dating apps that are well-suited to Introvert personality types.
Introverts generally communicate better in writing rather than talking; it makes us feel more comfortable and protected (typing from the safety of our own apartment), and it gives us time to think about our answers and how to respond. This means that conversation can flow more smoothly, and you can connect better to the person you’re talking to — getting past small talk and having thoughtful, meaningful conversations.
It doesn’t just have to be dating apps and sites you join either; it could be online forums, communities or message boards for an interest of yours (like a favorite band, sports team or hobby like baking or crafting).
Don’t be afraid to ditch the dating apps if you’re feeling stressed and anxious when you’re using them; if you get caught in a loop of talking to people but not meeting them, you can feel like you’re “failing” at dating. Stay positive and look in different places!
Don’t pretend to be someone you’re not (i.e. an Extravert)
It’s all too easy when you’re dating to see the whole thing as a performance in which you are playing a part, and trying to shun your lovely Introvert personality to pretend to be something you’re not: an Extravert.
The end result? Stage fright. Which means you can clam up, sink into yourself even more, and generally have a terrible time. Plus, it could result in you ending up in an uncomfortable situation, doing something that stresses you out (karaoke, anyone?).
Take the pressure off yourself to be an Extravert, and avoid putting on a front. Be honest about your personality type, and what you enjoy (knowing yourself is a strong Introvert quality). Own your introversion: being an Introvert has all sorts of awesome positives that you can share with your date.
The same goes for your date outfits; if you’re normally a jeans and sweater kinda gal, then dressing up in a tight pencil skirt and a low-cut top is going to make you feel super uncomfortable — and won’t have the desired effect of making you seem more confident. If anything, it ramps up your nerves and feelings of anxiety because you feel exposed and on edge.
Instead, go for an outfit that brings you happiness; something that makes you feel more relaxed and comfortable.
Finding love as an Introvert who hates dating can often feel hard, but it’s not impossible. Follow these dating tips for Introvert personality types and you’ll find your whole dating experience much easier and more enjoyable. And who knows? Maybe you’ll find love.