Are you an introvert? Are you put off dating because sometimes it feels like a performance? Well, you’re in the right place.
It is completely understandable that the whole concept of dating — from going to crowded places, to trying hard to strike up conversations on the first date, and the feeling that you have to be constantly buzzing with energy in order to seem attractive, could be one hell of a ride and draining for your introverted soul.
If you’re an introvert like me, I bet you know by that letting people in your heart is easier said than done. Sometimes you might even feel the need to present yourself as a neat and compressed little box, where the person opening it would just be shown all of your good bits. Nevertheless, all these ‘concerns’ shouldn’t stand in our way of exploring the endless romantic possibilities. Here’s some top tips for dating for all my fellow introverts.
Choose a shared activity for your first date
The first date can be especially daunting for anyone, let alone introverts, as it typically involves a lot of getting to know each other and ice breaking. We introverts might feel overwhelmed just by having to hold a mere conversation for the entire date, if it’s just – say – dinner at a nice restaurant. Not to mention the overthinking that introverts love to do (at least I do): Am I enjoying this person’s company? Is this person attracted to me? Wait, am I talking too much?
Putting some of our focus on another external activity that you two love is definitely the solution — be that tufting, karting, hiking, or going for an exhibition, you will both quickly find yourself at ease doing something you genuinely like, which in turn makes it easier to break the ice. Whenever you don’t feel like talking, you could focus on the activity.
Think ahead on what to talk about
Having the right conversation prompts can be nerve racking for first encounters and you’ll often feel like your mind goes blank. Coming up with topics you want to discuss is a little practice that I have done over the years (god, saying this makes me feel old). It’s not that you need to keep talking on and on and on, but it’d be nice just to have an idea of what you want to talk about, just in case your brain decides to freeze.
If you met this person online, prepping beforehand is even easier, as it’s very likely that you’ve stalked this person’s Instagram inside out. So, you could talk about places that they’ve been to (without sounding totally obsessed), what they did over the weekend or the last few IG stories they posted.
You’ve got to stay true to yourself
You absolutely don’t need to be the most outgoing person in the room to be lovable or attractive. Think about it, people want to connect with genuine human beings. You might not know it, but you’re very likely to radiate your own unique energy when you truly try to be yourself.
This can be tricky since sometimes, although we don’t want to admit it, we introverts can be quite the people-pleasers. You don’t need to impress your date in any way. If they aren’t ‘impressed’ when you are your authentic self or express your thoughts, you know that they aren’t the right person and aren’t worth your time anyway. There is no reason to be afraid of people not accepting who you are… so put that mask down!
Learn to say ‘no’ and take some me-time
If you’re an introvert, you know that we have to recharge. We often crave quiet nights where we just curl up in bed, with a good film being the only acceptable company. So, when it comes to dating, it’s okay to take baby steps! If you feel like you and your date are meeting more often than you’d like, remember you’re not obligated to say yes. Explain to them that you need some alone time, and that has nothing to do with them, and you’re all good!
When dating anxiety creeps up your mind and unnecessary thoughts are overflowing on a date, take a deep breath… and remind yourself that you are here to enjoy yourself with this other person! The worst case scenario if this date fails is one of you ghosting the other, so there’s really nothing to fret about.
Edited by Yoan Shterev