Mental HealthRelationshipsBeing Friends with Introverts

Being Friends with Introverts


Maybe you’ve heard that introverts make good friends, but do you know how to spot one? Perhaps there is an introvert who catches your eye, and with whom you would like a friendship. The problem is, you don’t know how to talk to them because, frankly, they don’t talk. So, you need to understand how to make friends with introverts and keeping friends with introverts.

First of all, realize that being an introvert does not make a person a loner or unsociable. Introverts, in fact, make great friends. You just might be an introvert. They value their friendships highly and will invest in those relationships to maintain them. They can do this because they likely have a few, choice friends. Thus, they have the time and energy to concentrate on these few people.

making friends with introverts
How to make friends with an introvert

Understand, however, that this takes time. For instance, an introvert may know an acquaintance for years before deepening the relationship. To an introvert, the relationship requires more than a “Hi, my name is…” to get started. In fact, you may meet an introvert formally and not really become friends until years down the road.

This is because an introvert’s friendship must have a proper foundation. An initial meeting is hardly a proper introduction to an introvert. Before investing in a relationship, they will study and observe a person for a period of time to decide if the relationship is worth having.

Being Friends with Introverts Can be Easy

Another way that introverts make friends is simply by living life with them. Schoolmates, coworkers, and those with similar backgrounds are more likely to become friends with them. Growing up together can also connect an introvert and his friend. There are a couple of reasons for this.

First off, the introvert finds small talk to be tedious. Coming up with relevant conversation topics for them is a chore, though they will do it to be polite and because it is the social norm. Thus, common ground is an important foundation for communication and thus a relationship.

Secondly, common ground is essential for mutual understanding. Non-verbal communication can be the introvert’s main way of interacting, and a basic understanding of their mannerisms is needed for that communication.

Some of the most unlikely friendships will take place because of this. If you play a sport with an introvert or attend the same class, you may suddenly realize that you are now friends. It was not decided upon at a certain point. There was just a mutual, unspoken agreement between you two which gradually became a companionship.

However, if you have not had the chance to grow up with the introvert with whom you wish to be friends, there are still other ways to achieve that. Introverts are more likely to become friends with someone that another friend has already taken in. If an introvert has an outgoing friend who invites a newcomer into his/her circle, the introvert will have reason enough to accept them as well.

So, in summary, there are a few things to remember.

Makingfriends with introverts will take time. Don’t expect to become instant friends with them. Allow the relationship to run its course naturally and gradually.

Before and during the process of making friends with itroverts, develop a strong foundation. If you have common interests, hangout places, and the same circle of friends, a relationship is more likely to develop.

Keep in mind, however, to branch out from that common interest. If you find common ground over one particular artist, a following, or a week at camp, make sure to go beyond that, together. There is such a thing as a temporary friendship, one that will dissolve once the common ground is lost. To keep that from happening, you will both have to put in the extra effort to maintain the relationship or it will by default, fade.

There are also some things that you must remember not to do when being friends with introverts

Don’t force it, especially by doing all the work. Although an introvert may not initiate conversation, they will, later on, if they want to be friends. If this does not eventually occur, take the hint and be willing to back off.

If unsure, look out for other signs that the person does not care to be friends. For example, if you notice that the person is polite but remains closed, this could be another indication of their lack of interest.

Be friendly, but give them space as well. If you are constantly there or in their face, they will be instantly turned off. Respect yourself by not appearing to be desperate or insecure. You never know, the introvert may need this distance to help them see that you will indeed be a friend worth investing in.

As with any friendship, it will take time and the willingness of both parties to make it work. If the other person doesn’t want to be friends, it’s okay. It doesn’t mean that you are inferior to them or that they don’t like you. It just might have been recognized that you weren’t the best fit for that person. But if you are someone who succeeds at being friends with introverts, value and maintain their friendships. It’ll be worth the effort.

Hi, I'm Samantha. I live in Seattle and I develop logistics management software. I'm also a fitness and health advocate and an assistant editor for the AP!

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