12 Strategies on Maintaining an Introvert-Extrovert Friendship as an Introvert
Many introverts have a hard time maintaining friendships with extroverts. This is because the social atmosphere of an event can be overwhelming to them, and they may feel exhausted after engaging in conversation for too long.
In this article, we will discuss 12 strategies that all introverted friends can use to maintain an introvert-extrovert friendship as an introvert!
1. Take a break from the conversation
To maintain a friendship with an extrovert, it is important to get a break from talking every now and then. This could be as simple as stepping away for five minutes or asking the person if they want to take a walk together.
The social atmosphere can overwhelm introverts who are sensitive to stimulation and make them feel exhausted after interacting with an extrovert for a long time.
2. Give them space to talk about themselves
Extroverts thrive on social engagement and validation, so feel free to ask them questions about their interests.
You can start with basic questions like what they do for a living or where they live. If you are looking for more specific information, it's best to know the person first before asking detailed questions such as "So how many people live with you?" or "What's your favorite food?"
This will allow the extrovert to share their thoughts and feelings, and may even inspire new topics for conversation.
3. Offer to help them with anything they need
If you are looking for a way to offer support, it is important that you do not take over the conversation.
Instead of trying to carry on a two-way dialogue, ask an extrovert if they need help with anything or have any requests. This will allow them to be in control and know that there's someone who wants to help them.
You must make sure they know it's okay for them to say, "no" or "I don't need any help right now."
This will allow the extrovert time to recharge and have some peace without feeling like someone is always trying to take care of them.
4. Find common ground and build off of it
The best way to maintain a friendship with an extrovert is by finding common interests and building off of them.
If you are not sure what the person's interests are, ask more about their hobbies or favorite TV shows. You can also comment on something they're wearing or ask for recommendations to find out where some potential common ground may exist.
This will allow you to create a conversation with the extrovert and make it easier for them to feel relaxed because they have something that connects both of you!
5. Be upfront about your introversion and why you may not be as social as they are
If you are looking for a way to avoid an awkward situation, be upfront about your introverted tendencies and what it means.
This should make the extrovert more understanding of how they may feel when interacting with someone who is not as social as them. This can also promote empathy because they will know that you need time away from the conversation.
It is important that you do not feel like you are hurting their feelings by being upfront about your introverted tendencies and why it's hard for you to interact with them as much; they should understand!
You can also use this opportunity to promote healthy boundaries, which will allow the extrovert to see how difficult a friendship with an introvert can be.
6. Use an app like "Offtime" or "RescueTime" on your phone
Because we introverts generally feel more comfortable behind our devices and screens, we can pretty much scroll our lives away.
Apps like Offtime or RescueTime can give you insights on how much time you've spent on your devices, which can serve as mental reminders to be brave and ask your extroverted or introverted friends out to have some overdue face-to-face conversations.
7. Use your introversion to your advantage!
When you're around extroverted people, you might be able to observe interesting behaviors that you wouldn't have noticed otherwise because of their outgoing nature.
You may be able to observe how they think and speak, which can be a great way for introverts to learn more about themselves.
Additionally, you might want to ask an extrovert what it's like being around someone who is so opposite from them or if they have any advice on having conversations with people that are different than them!
8. Invite extroverts over to hang out by yourself or with just one other close introvert friend
It can be hard for introverts to go out and spend time with other people, especially if they are not close friends.
If you're feeling shy or nervous about going somewhere like a party or social event, inviting an extrovert over will make it easier on you because there's someone else who wants to hang out at your place!
9. Create a plan for connecting with them
Create an agenda before hanging out so that you both know what the focus is and then you can take turns talking about different topics on the list!
This will help you stay focused and not get off-topic!
It can be hard to keep up with extroverts, so this is a great way for the introvert to maintain control while still getting some quality face time.
10. Schedule alone time where no one is allowed to contact you at all
This will give you time to recharge and be around yourself for a little bit.
There's also no shame in telling your extroverted friends that you need a break and will be busy with other things for the weekend.
This may feel like an inconvenience to them, but introverts need to take this time because we can't go constantly or our batteries might die!
If they're good friends, they should understand your needs and allow you some space when appropriate.
11. Try to save social time for the weekends or with specific friends, and say no when you need some "me time"
A bit similar to the point I just described but still worth a mention.
You can save social time for the weekends or with specific people when they are available.
This will help to make sure that your introverted needs (e.g., downtime, alone-time) and extroverted needs (e.g., socializing!) are met appropriately so no one feels like they're being ignored or neglected.
It's also important to have some alone time because introverts need it just like extroverts do; we may feel pulled in a million different directions and our batteries might die! So be sure to take care of yourself by saying no when necessary.
You can even ask your friends if they are willing to allow you some space when appropriate.
It can be tough for extroverts to understand the needs of introverts, but if they are good friends, they should allow us this time when we need it!
They just might not know how much time or energy is required by an introvert and think that we're saying no because we don’t want to hang out with them.
It's OK for us to take a break, and we often can come back better than when our batteries were full!
12. Suggest connecting over Skype or FaceTime
It'll allow you to still talk to your extrovert friend but also keep some distance so that the conversation/discussion doesn't get too overwhelming for you.
This is a great way to maintain your friendship with an extrovert even if that means more virtual than in-person interactions!
It'll also help them understand the needs of introverts, so they will be able to make accommodations for us when possible without being inconvenienced or frustrated.
Sometimes it's difficult for people who are different to understand the needs of others.
This is why introverts need to be proactive in setting up our lives and schedules so that we can maintain friendships with extrovert friends without compromising too much, or conversely, feeling like getting together with them will entirely drain us!
If you are an introvert who has a good friend that is also extroverted, it can be tough to maintain balance in your friendship. But this doesn't have to be the case!
You just need some strategies for connecting with them so you don't feel pulled down by their social demands or frustrated when they want to talk and chill with other people too.
In this article, we've provided 12 tips for maintaining friendships with extroverts as an introvert: nervous about going somewhere like a party or social event? Invite them over instead of trying to go alone; create an agenda before hanging out; schedule time where no one is allowed contact me at all (including myself); try saving social time for weekends/with specific friends only; suggest connecting over Skype or Facetime; try to keep your conversation/discussion with them short and simple while still being personal.