It might seem like extroverts have a leg over introverts when it comes to dating, but introverts are the ones who actually bring more to the table. Sure, extroverts are naturally outgoing and talkative, but introverts lure dates in with their thoughtful conversation, unmatched listening skills and super sexy sense of mystery.
Below, self-identifying introverts and experts on introversion share six reasons introverts are surprisingly good at dating.
1. Introverts are masters of mystery.
Introverts are alluring to others because they aren’t inclined to give everything away at once, said Laurie Helgoe, the author of Introvert Power: Why Your Inner Life Is Your Hidden Strength. In a world of TMI, that sense of mystery is powerful.
“A conversation with an introvert is like a journey to a vast and complex new landscape; you see part of the picture but also know there is much more to interest you down the road,” Helgoe told HuffPost. “Because introverts aren’t in a rush to tell all, they have the luxury of coming up with insights, ideas and funny observations that others miss.”
2. They genuinely listen to what their date has to say.
Forget monopolizing the conversation. Introverts would rather listen then spill their whole life story, brag about a recent vacation or lecture their date on news of the day. They value a back-and-forth conversation and ask follow-up questions. (Bonus points for that: A recent Harvard Business School study found that people who asked a lot of questions, particularly follow-up questions, were considered more likable by others.)
In short, introverts win their dates over with their genuine curiosity and ability to listen with intention, said Michaela Chung, the author of The Irresistible Introvert: Harness The Power of Quiet Charisma in a Loud World.
“As someone who has gone on a lot of dates with both introverts and extroverts, I can honestly say that the most exceptional dates were with fellow introverts,” Chung said. “Instead of flitting from topic to topic or telling one long-winded story after the next, introverts slow down, look you in the eye and truly listen. Introverts draw you in by posing interesting questions and sharing their own unique perspectives.”
3. Introverts tend to have deeper and more meaningful relationships.
Introverts would rather have a few promising relationship leads than dozens of open chats with people they’re only vaguely interested in, said Steven Zawila, a writer and the editor of the blog Charming Introvert.
“As an introvert, I take my time when I’m getting to know someone romantically and I don’t really try to get too physical until I know them better,” he said. “I compare myself to my extroverted friend: He enjoys hitting on a lot of women at bars and clubs and taking things to the next level fairly quickly. He has a lot of numbers in his phone but my relationships have lasted longer and been more meaningful, I think.”
4. Introverts know who they are and what they want.
Introverts put forethought into everything they do ― and that includes sizing up the pros and cons of a potential relationship. Generally speaking, they know who they are and what they want, Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, the author of The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together.
“A huge benefit of reflection while dating is that introverts have probably taken the time to get to know themselves as a single person,” she said. “Most introverts aren’t looking for that other person to ‘complete’ them, which actually makes them more of an interesting person to their date.”
5. Introverts won’t spend time on the date staring at their phone or looking for someone else to talk to.
Introverts may be wary of small talk, but once they’re committed to a conversation, they truly lock in. Chung compared her experience dating to the experiences of an ex-roommate to illustrate some key differences in how extroverts and introverts look for love IRL.
“My roommate, an extrovert, seemed to be the epitome of extroverted charm: she was outgoing, witty and full of energy,” Chung explained. “At first, I envied her easy ability to chat and flirt with any guy in the room, but as I spent more time with her, I realized that her attention was always divided. She was constantly looking at her phone or scanning the room.”
As an introvert, Chung felt like her friend was missing out on opportunities to have deep, meaningful conversation with worthwhile matches.
“Introverts naturally slow down in conversation and give you their full attention which is so refreshing,” she said.
6. Introverts provide refuge from a too-fast, too-intense world.
One of the biggest selling points for dating an introvert, according to Helgoe? In this fluid, constantly changing modern world, introverts provide stability and calmness to the ones they love.
“When an introvert confidently owns his or her preference for a slower pace, the message is, ‘I’m not trying too hard. I’m comfortable with pauses. I have time,’” she explained. “That’s powerful. An introvert is less interested in performing and competing and more willing to truly be with you.”