Having good friends who you can vent to when you’re having a bad day, or round-up for some fun on a random weekend, is invaluable.
These days, so many of us are craving more people we can connect with. Sure, we have hundreds of social media buddies, but not a lot of the “you can call me whenever you need anything — even if it’s 4:00 am” type BFF’s.
There are endless reasons to want to make new friends. Maybe you just moved to a new city, or you’ve changed up your lifestyle and don’t want to hang with your former partying crowd. Maybe you’re the first of your friends to have a baby, or perhaps all your friends have kids and you don’t. Maybe you’ve simply outgrown some old friendships and want to expand your social circle.
Whatever the reason, good friends make life so much better!
If you’ve tried, you know that making friends as an adult isn’t quite the same as when you were a kid. It’s not as simple as inviting the kid next to you on the swings over to play — but it also doesn’t have to be a huge deal either.
Here are three easy ways to hop on the new friendship train:
- Make new friends by engaging in activities you enjoy.
You want friends you have things in common with now (not 15 years ago!). Start by making a point to get out of the house to do things that bring you joy and also connect you with like-minded people.
You can take yoga or pilates classes. Join people for hiking, wine tasting and all kinds of activities you’ll find on sites like Meetup and Nextdoor. You can get involved in Facebook groups, volunteer at your local humane society or library, or become a regular at the coffee shop down the street.
When our Savvy Team member Sarah moved to Portland (and didn’t know a soul besides her husband!), she found a great book club from a posting on the Nextdoor app and immediately began creating a new social circle. Her husband joined a softball league and met others who had recently moved to town too.
Put yourself out there to meet people by doing things you love!
2. Throw a Friend + 1 Party
If entertaining people at your home is your jam, throw a “friend +1 party.” (A term we just made up, but we think it’ll catch on!)
Invite a few good friends over for a casual get together. The catch? Everyone needs to bring at least one person that’s new to the group.
This way you’ll meet several other people that you already have something in common with (your shared friend!) and will be more likely to hit it off with at least a few new people.
3. Follow-up and invest in your new friendships
Once you start meeting people and connecting, you have to keep the conversation going. People are busy and it takes time and effort to build new friendships (not to mention some serious scheduling!).
If you’re chatting with someone and feel a friend connection, invite them on a “friend date,” like for coffee or a drink. Is it a little uncomfortable to put yourself out there? Sure. But we’re all in the same boat and chances are that other person would love to make new friends too.
Making new friends takes time, but it’s always worth it. If you put yourself out there and make an effort, chances are you’ll soon have your own group that rivals Monica Gellar’s. 🙂
Quote du jour
“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: “What! You too? I thought I was the only one!”” — C.S. Lewis
If you’re planning a girls’ night or your friend +1 party, don’t stress! Keep things simple with a snacks and desserts spread. Cheese and crackers, popcorn, mixed nuts, some break and bake cookies and boxed brownie mix, and of course, wine. All that will take less than an hour to prep, but keep your group satisfied. If you want things to look a little fancier, serve your treats on fun platters. You can pick up great-looking ones at thrift stores, or even Target. Don’t worry about everything matching, it’s more chic if it doesn’t!
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