Just by hearing the words introverts and extroverts within the context of dating and relationships, people are quick to formulate their own opinions. “Being an extrovert is waaaaaaay better than being an introvert” or “Extroverts have better chances of scoring a date and getting seen in the dating scene” are not quite far from the truth.
But in which capacities, really? Beyond the layman’s definition of these two types of people, what does science really tells us about introversion and extroversion? For starters, being an extrovert or introvert is a core aspect of one’s personality. Coined by Carl Jung in the 1920s, the terms have become increasingly popular over the years and commonly used to contrast two opposing human energies. Extroverted people are energized by social activities while such are considered cumbersome by introverts. Essentially, extroverts thrive on stimulation while introverts are overwhelmed with too much environmental stimulus and prefer to rejuvenate in by themselves.
Applied in the world of dating, does either of the two personality types have an edge over the other? While neither can be exclusively described as superior over the other, studies have shown that extroverts are more likely to be overall happier than introverts. This feeling of “greater happiness” was oftentimes attributed to extroverts’ increased sensitivity to rewarding social situations and that they engage more in social activities. Therefore, being with an extrovert may bring more excitement and fun in the relationship. After all, a happy partner makes for a happy relationship is what they say.
But introverts may be raising their eyebrows with this claim. The above opinion may be based on societal bias, seeing that just because extroverts are more declarative of their emotions doesn’t automatically make them the “happier” ones. And is there even an objective way to measure happiness? Just because introverts aren’t the life of the party doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy as much by just staying in a quiet corner in a café reading their favorite book, or venturing away on a secluded island. Given the inherent difference in personality types, extroverts and introverts share the same principle of benefiting from different happiness strategies.
So what role does introversion and extroversion play in the world of dating? And does the maxim of “opposites attract” really apply here? If you have identified your personality type, which type should you be dating to ensure a long-lasting commitment?
Because we base attraction on a “first impressions” and on the perception that “the more alike you are, the better you will interact”, it is but natural for extroverts to be drawn towards extroverts and likewise for introverts. This major compatibility factor weighs in on the fact that having the same personality allows for two individuals to strike a connection in the initial stages of dating. But as for long-term projections, similar personality types are known to clash because of too much or too little energy being invested by both partners. However, being opposites of each other doesn’t necessarily equate to “balance”. If one was introverted, the extroverted partner would have to make consistent sacrifices by sublimating their strong desire to be surrounded by social activities. Likewise, an introverted partner may have to put up with being exposed to overwhelming stimulus if they were with an extroverted person.
The secret for an extrovert-introvert relationships is for both parties to agree to disagree on their differences. This can be an incredible set up. the key is balance for both parties. The extrovert will bring the introvert out of their shell while the introvert will ground the extrovert. It is a perfect blend. Both energy types experience life differently, for example. When an extrovert comes home from their day at work they want to chatter away whereas introverts prefer to spend some time alone before they greet their partner. To deal with the extrovert should call a friend, head out to the gym or walk the dog and leave their introverted partner to rejuvenate and in time they will be back on the same wavelength. It’s all about respecting each other’s needs.