Dating as an introvert is an anxiety-ridden nightmare. You’re shy and comfortable being on your own. Now you suddenly have to…talk to someone? Don’t worry. We are here to get you through the stress and have a positive dating experience. Check out these dating tips for introverts.
1 – Identify What You Want out of a Relationship
You can avoid a lot of awkward and unnecessary dating conversations by identifying what you want in a relationship. Do you want a serious relationship, or do you prefer casual dating? Do you want someone who can take care of you financially or someone with a similar education background? Do you want to date internationally, or would you like to date someone local?
These questions will not only narrow down who you date, but also which dating platform is right for you.
2 – Find the Best Way to Meet the Type of Partner You Want
Introverts tend to thrive online. The internet prevents some of the initial anxiety that comes with dating, like making awkward eye contact or coming up with conversation topics on the spot. You can start conversations when you want or end them abruptly when you feel uncomfortable. Online dating is a space where you are in total control of your experience.
With this in mind, online dating isn’t the only way to meet someone. You could try interacting with a social group that your ideal partner might participate in. For example, if you want someone who enjoys reading like you do, you might look for a local book club or poetry reading in your area. Think of who you want to meet, where you’re likely to meet them, and what you can do as an introvert to bring that encounter to fruition.
3 – Use Online Dating to Your Advantage (You Have More Time to Plan Conversations)
As we mentioned above, online dating is perfect for introverts! You can match with people in your own time, and you can plan out what to say before you send it. The most nerve-racking part of the process is the initial startup, but here at Meet Hong Kong Singles, we make it easy to set up an online dating profile. Be open about what you like and what you’re looking for, and let the site do the rest of the work for you!
Once you have your profile set up, get familiar with the dating site. There is no pressure to interact with people. You can find matches when you feel comfortable. In-person dating can be stressful for introverts and extroverts, but online dating creates a neutral experience for everyone.
4 – Be Transparent about Your Shyness and Personal Boundaries
Being shy isn’t a bad trait. In fact, others may like the fact that you’re quiet, reserved, observant or reclusive. You can be upfront about your introverted nature, as well as any personal boundaries you have. You might tell someone that you’ve had bad dating experiences in the past and would like to take it slow, or that you prefer not to talk about a certain subject. Set the boundaries that make you feel safe and comfortable. That’s what’s most important.
5 – Choose Comfortable Settings for In-Person Dates
When the time comes to meet someone in person, choose a casual environment. Many introverts like eating at a casual dining spot where they can talk and get to know each other. Clubs and bars are usually too loud for meaningful conversations, and the noise adds to the nerves. High-end dining also puts pressure on the situation because both parties feel uptight and on-edge.
Choose a meeting location where you can feel comfortable leaning back, relaxing your shoulders, or laughing without a room of stares. This sets the tone for a positive dating experience.
6 – Think of Questions That Keep the Conversation Flowing
Awkward silence is an introverts worst fear (or at least, in the top 10). You don’t want to speak up, but you also don’t want to sit in silence. Practice some questions before a date that will keep the conversation going. More specifically, think of questions that have open-ended responses, rather than yes or no answers. A yes or no question has two possible answers, and the topic is liable to end with the answer. If you ask “What is your favorite type of food to make for yourself?” instead of “Do you like to cook?”, you’ll have a much longer response to build on.
Learn more: 21 Conversation Starters for Long Distance Online Dating
7 – Avoid Negative Thought Patterns That Increase Anxiety
Negative thinking will make you second guess every step of the dating process. Did I say something wrong? Will he like me? Am I talking too much? Am I not talking enough?
Instead of jumping to conclusions or overanalyzing the situation, try to live in the moment. Identify negative thought patterns when they happen, and try to correct the behavior when you notice it. You can’t truly know what the other person is thinking, and you can’t control it even if you did. Trust that you have something special to offer.
8 – Remember, They’re Probably Shy Too!
Some studies suggest that 50.7% of adults are introverts. That’s over half the population! Your perfect match might be just as nervous about dating as you are. Take a deep breath and push through those awkward early stages. When the right person comes along, dating will come naturally.