An introvert and extrovert relationship is not like what they show in the movies.
The idea of “opposites attract” has been romanticized so much, but things are different when it comes to real life.
Movies rarely talk about how anxious and overwhelmed introverts feel in a crowd full of loud and outgoing people.
They also don’t talk about how being alone in a room during lockdown was the worst nightmare come true for an extrovert.
Then, how does one make an introvert and extrovert relationship work? After all, they are fundamentally different and derive their happiness from opposite sources.
An introvert and extrovert relationship can work if both don’t assume things about each other’s nature. Obviously, some compromise is required on both sides.
Let’s dive deeper into the tips to make an introvert and extrovert relationship work.
1. Understand where your partner derives their energy from
Introvert and extrovert relationship problems may arise if you are not curious or open enough to understand your partner’s needs. You have to see where they are coming from, what makes them happy, and where they draw their energy from. The challenges are totally different when you are dating as an introvert.
2. Take some time off after work to detox
Dating an extrovert can mean dating someone who would want to rant about their day as soon as they come home from work. But an introvert might need some alone time after having a whole day of interacting with people at work. So, taking an hour or two after work can actually work wonders in an introvert and extrovert relationship. An extrovert can use that time to catch up on social media or texting. An introvert can use that time to take a nap, watch TV, or enjoy solitude.
3. Learn how each style deals with conflict
The solution to introvert and extrovert relationship problems lies in understanding how your partner deals with conflict. If you need time to cool down, you can set a time when you will revisit the issue rather than ignoring it or pursuing it relentlessly. For example, if an extrovert man and introvert woman are dating, the extrovert needs to focus on calming down during an argument and on not getting defensive. On the other hand, the introvert needs to focus on trusting their partner and opening up.
4. Find activities of mutual interest
Introverts fall in love with extroverts and make it work by finding activities that they both enjoy. Let’s take an example of a relationship between an extrovert man and introvert woman. An introvert might enjoy activities like hiking, biking, playing video games or watching movies. Their extrovert partner might also enjoy doing some of these things. So, both can find a common ground on activities of mutual interest.
5. Give space to your partner for individual fun
Healthy boundaries in terms of time and space are the secret behind making an introvert and extrovert relationship work. You don’t have to torture your introverted self to dance on Casper music all night and have neon paint all over you. You can stay in and read a book while your extroverted partner goes out and grabs drinks with their friends. Be very honest about your needs and don’t shy away from telling your extroverted partner about the importance of ‘me time’ in your life. You can communicate clearly instead of making excuses like “I am tired”.
6. Have a signal system
Having code words can actually help an introvert and extrovert relationship to thrive. You both can invent a signal system which could be a subtle cue for the introvert’s extroverted partner that they need a break from all the overwhelming socializing and it’s time to leave. Yes, being overwhelmed is one of the things that happen when an introvert falls in love.
A friend on mine had a code of “mango shake” with her extroverted girlfriend. So whenever they were at a party and any one of them would say, “Let’s go grab a mango shake” or “I am craving a mango shake”, it was a cue to leave.
7. Find comfort in silence
Bliss can be found in an introvert and extrovert relationship in the form of comfortable silence. It’s an art to nurture the ability to be together, without the need to fill every moment with activities or words. It’s one of the communication hacks to use while dating an introvert. It takes time to get to such a place in an introvert and extrovert relationship. But once you both get comfortable with each other, you can enjoy the other’s company in silence.