Are you in an introvert-extrovert relationship? And, are you trying to balance the extrovert’s need to be social with the introvert’s need to NOT be social?
Discover the common phrases that are undermining your efforts to get your introvert out, and the one line you can use to strike a balance in this episode of the CK & GK Podcast.
Introverts may be more sensitive to their environment, but that sensitivity also brings empathy and the ability to connect deeply with others. Embrace and celebrate their sensitivity. —CK
This episode will
Strengthen your relationship with your introvert-extrovert partner.
Give you a deeper understanding of introverts and extroverts.
Teach you what to do to ensure that both introverts and extroverts have their social needs met.
Is Your Partner an Introvert? Here's what Not to Say
LOL... Trying to get your introverted partner to want to go out? Into *waves arms all over* the outside world? Saying any of the following things will absolutely backfire, friend.
1) You're so quiet.
Introverts are quiet by nature. That’s one of their defining characteristics. When someone says something like this, they’re personality-shaming. (For the record, “You’re too serious” and “why don’t you ever want to go out and do something fun” are also personality shaming.)
By saying this, you’re implying that the things that your introvert loves to do (like stay home and do more quiet, introspective activities) are boring. This line is likely to make your beloved introvert feel misunderstood at best and judged at worst.
There are LOTS of other indicators that someone is engaged or interested in whatever social interactions are happening. Think: listening, observing, etc.
Instead, try engaging your introverted partner by asking open-ended questions about their interests or starting a conversation about a topic they enjoy. Encourage them to share their thoughts and opinions in a comfortable and non-judgmental environment. And if they don't want to share? It's not about you, so try not to read into it. It's about them not wanting to share in that moment. Try again later and you might get a different response.
2) Don't be so antisocial!
Ew. Character attacking again? Not cool, friend. Also, quiet and introverted does not equate to antisocial.
Quick vocabulary lesson: Antisocial means “averse to the company of others.” (It could also mean “harmful to others”, FYI.)
Remember: introverts recharge by being alone and it doesn't mean they don't value social relationships.
Double ew, you’re laying on a pretty thick layer of guilt. If your introvert does go out to this big event, your guilt may end up backfiring, because now they’ll be drained and resentful.
Respect and appreciate your introverted partner's need for alone time and quiet environments. Offer alternative social activities that cater to their preferences, such as small gatherings or one-on-one outings.
3) You're too sensitive.
Introverts are known to process information deeply (always observing and thinking, these ones are). It can make them more sensitive to everything, including their environment. It’s often part of why they don’t like big crowds and otherwise overstimulating events.
Maybe consider the power that comes with this sensitivity (empathy, helllooooooo).
Validate and support your introverted partner's emotions. Encourage open communication and create a safe space for them to express their feelings without judgment. Show empathy and understanding by actively listening and offering comfort when needed. Chances are, they'll return that empathy to you in spades.
Now, here’s how to align your extroverted needs with those of your introvert.
Ask them to meet you in the middle. Acknowledge their need for alone time, and offer a time that you can provide them with that time. Then, communicate your own needs, and ask if there’s an activity you can both enjoy out of the house together on a regular basis.
Sources for this episode include
Got an Introverted Spouse? Here Are 3 Things Experts Want You to Stop Saying to Them | Emma Singer for PureWow
https://bit.ly/CKGKsupportsShatterproof | Donate to Shatterproof to support addiction recovery
More Things to Consider
Social Needs During The Holiday Season
This episode explores the unique challenges faced in relationships where one person is an introvert and the other an extrovert, particularly when it comes to navigating social events during the holiday season. Especially this time of year—when even the celebrations get stressful—the importance of mutual understanding and respect for each other's social preferences and needs can't be overstated.
Having that respect and understanding strengthens your relationship and allows introvert-extrovert couples to enjoy each other's company during social events.
Leveraging Your Differences for a Balanced Partnership
Opposites attract! Rather than thinking that introverts and extroverts are incompatible, we urge you to think of the power created when the two of you come together. You love your person, so embrace what makes them unique. By appreciating these differences and learning to navigate them effectively, introvert-extrovert couples can create a relationship that is both balanced and fulfilling.
Practical Tips for Building a Strong Relationship
The focus of this episode is tangible advice for building strong and healthy relationships. Practical tips such as respecting personal space, acknowledging individual emotional responses, and understanding how each person recharges are things that matter in any relationship, not just romantic ones. Furthermore, the last tip to incorporating shared interests into social events which can act as neutral ground makes the social setting more enjoyable for both introverts and extroverts.
You are amazing. Introvert, extrovert, whatever, we just love you for listening.
Until next time!