The art of introvert flirtation is one that I’m not unfamiliar with.
It’s largely based on ignoring the person of interest completely and pretending that they don’t exist, alongside the occasional fleeting glance at them.
Or you just stare them down and hope that they can feel the power of your emotion through your soul-crushing gaze.
Unfortunately, both of the above methods (tactics I used frequently in the past) don’t tend to do so well when it comes to bridging the gap and making contact with your crush.
As an introvert, the rest of the world can be difficult.
It can sometimes feel very much like you, an alien, are trying to fit in and entice an outsider…
Having absolutely no idea how to do so and win over their hearts.
Whether you’re the introvert or you just want to better understand introvert flirting 101, I’ve got all 10 facts ready for you:
1) They do their best to single you out and make conversation
Not in the same way that the confident, extroverted amongst us single out those they are interested in.
No – introverts will do this in a far more covert and subtle manner.
This is also once they’re over their initial fear of actually speaking to you.
They might try and catch you alone in the library corridors to share a few words, or find a very random excuse to drop you a message (in the desperate hope that this will lead to further conversation).
So if you find someone coincidentally popping up in the most unexpected of places, or messaging you about when to best tell if a banana is ripe, you might well be the target of an introvert’s affections.
2) They’re just really awkward
More awkward than normal?!
Having a crush on someone can be daunting for anyone (bar perhaps the most confident out there).
But for those who stray a little more on the shyer side of life, it can be nerve-wracking having any form of interaction with their crush.
Nervous giggling, avoiding eye contact, surreptitious glances at you when they think you’re not looking…
Chances are that their interest in you is overwhelming their nervous system and triggering heightened feelings of stress, which translates into a lot of fluttering gestures and stuttering.
3) Thoughtful gestures and an excellent memory for anything you say
Introverts aren’t great at showing their emotions in the conventional sense.
They might try to butter you up with a few compliments (albeit awkward ones), but what you’re more likely to find is that they instead turn to other forms of trying to show you that they’re interested.
You mention once in class that you like marshmallow bars.
For the next four weeks, they accidentally bring two with them and one lands up on your desk.
Or you get a little stuck on a project and they’re hovering your shoulder within a second, very willing to sacrifice their evening to help you out.
Introverts will notice the little things about you and go out of their way to try and demonstrate how you’ve caught their eye, even if it’s not through big vocal outbursts or obvious seduction.
4) They’ll let their guard down
The nature of many introverts is to keep to themselves.
This includes hiding their true feelings, thoughts, and desires behind big walls.
But should you catch the eye of such a person, chances are they’ll let you in.
Maybe not over the walls, but they’ll let you peek inside and begin to share more about themselves.
What they’re interested in, what their past has been like, what novel they’re currently reading.
An introvert opening up is a rarity (a bit like the Night-Blooming Cereus that blossoms only once a year).
If you can see a noticeable difference in their behavior and have a funny feeling that those walls are coming down, you’re probably the chosen one.
It takes a lot for an introvert to open up, so they probably think you are incredibly special.
5) They’re the first to like your social media posts
Okay, contact in the real world might be hard…
But introverts can go the extra mile by making their interest known by rushing to like your Instagram posts.
Heart emojis in response to your stories, speedy fingers tapping away to like your newest selfie upload, maybe even the stray comment if they feel brave enough.
A lot of people live online nowadays so it’s difficult to single out those who are always on their phone vs an introvert trying to make their interest known.
But if you notice that someone is regularly popping up and appreciating everything you post, they might be trying to send you a subtle online demonstration of their interest.
5) You can expect speedy replies
Again, many of us reply to texts within minutes.
But an introvert who has their eyes on someone will go the extra mile to make sure that the recipient of their affection doesn’t ever think that they’re being forgotten or overlooked.
I for one hate talking on the phone, but I was quick to pick up my now-partner’s calls when we initially started dating.
For him, calling and checking-in was commonplace.
For me, phone calls were absolutely terrifying – yet I was willing to face my fears (pitiful, I know) and even go as far as a Facetime.
Brave, I know.
6) They leave their hideout to hang with you
An introvert’s haven is their safe space.
It’s usually their home, but might also be a secret coffee shop or library nook.
If you get the pleasure of being invited to this safe haven, don’t take such an invite lightly.
To them, allowing a whole other person into this safe space is a big step.
It takes a lot of courage and means they’re serious about pursuing you.
7) They invite you out and about
Whilst an invite into their safe space might still be off the cards, an introvert will likely try and sequester you away to get to know you better in environments in which they feel comfortable.
This might not be presented in the most obvious manner, so you’ll have to read between the lines a little.
But when they’re not ‘unintentionally’ popping up wherever you are, they might try and actually ask you to spend some 1-on-1 time with them.
Perhaps to catch up on some studying, or discuss a new project.
Or maybe they’ve heard about this really cool restaurant, and they know you like noodles – fancy joining them?
(Plot twist: they actually hate noodles.)
8) They get weird
But not actually weird, because individuality is what we’re aiming for.
I didn’t really learn to embrace my own uniqueness and individuality until I started digging deeper into my own journey.
Rudá Iandé, co-founder of The Vessel and the shaman we have around here for good reason, has been pretty critical to my own journey about learning how to embrace myself (a self-confessed introvert).
We typically get a pretty bad rep.
Like many other naturally introverted individuals, I’ve spent most of my life conceding to what others think of me, and jumping into whatever box they decide to stuff me into.
Tackling society’s misconceptions is difficult, particularly when you’ve spent your whole life accepting the premade labels pasted on your back.
But the truth is that unlike what the movies and books and pop culture says, being introverted doesn’t automatically have to equate to being weird, antisocial, and misunderstood.
In fact, rewiring your own thinking is the key to embracing your quirks and escaping this black-and-white labeling system which shuns you for your individuality.
Rudá’s writing exercises are a blessing if you’re like me and struggle to actually get to grips with something unless instructed to sit down, write, then contemplate.
You can watch his video and get a better idea of what I’m talking about here, and even have a go at the exercises yourself.
Without his insights into escaping the quest for toxic perfection and letting go of the whole change-who-you-are, start now, I can help you work past those flaws guru model, I would still be pretty lost and at odds with myself.
But his guidance on letting go of self-shame and judging others has been one of the keys in leading me to better embrace my own quirks and let down my guard.
Better yet, I can now say for certain that if your introvert friend starts sharing more about their special interests and thoughts that they otherwise tend to keep under lock and key, chances are they’re starting to open up and trust you.
(Because I’m one of them).
If they lift up the curtains and show you their inner world, be it their interest in geo-caching, in smutty literature, in collecting Furbys…
You’re getting a glimpse into what few others get the chance of seeing, probably because you’ve really caught their eye.
9) They inch closer
For most introverts, physical touch is a touchy topic.
Many (myself included) struggle with hugs and hand-holding and all other forms of personal space invasion.
But if you notice the introvert doing even minor gestures such as giving your back a nice awkward pat or even going as far as a hug, they’ve likely selected you as a point of interest.
Physical touch is usually reserved only for the closest of confidants and family members.
By breaching this and brushing up against you (in a non-creepy way), this is usually the introvert-style of trying, desperately, to let someone know that they’re interested in you and want to get to know you better.
Introverts can be a little more challenging, not to date, but rather to actually get around to the dating stage.
It takes a great deal of patience, of coaxing, and of trying to understand the covert ways in which they try and seduce people.
A very much non-obvious way of flirting, you’ll likely be left confused at many corners, second-guessing whether or not this person is actually interested in you or is just acting in slightly puzzling ways.
But take it from an introvert; it’s pretty scary to put yourself out there and start trying to show your interest in someone.
We don’t typically do so in the conventional ways, with big bouquets or saucy texts.
Our methods are far more undercurrent and can sometimes go unseen or unnoticed.
But if you’ve gone through this list and have come away realizing that someone you know might well be trying to show you that they’re interested (albeit in an introverted way), give them the chance.
Although they may lack the initial ability to express certain emotions, it’s not unusual for them to feel these emotions far more deeply than many other people.
Owing to this, introverts are often incredibly thoughtful and loyal and make for absolutely wonderful partners.