It’s not easy making friends as an adult and especially as you get into your 30’s and 40’s. Everyone has their own life, family and friends. Their own circle they stick to, but if you are looking to meet new people outside your social circle, it’s not the easiest thing to do. When you’re a kid all you do is find a kid on the playground and ask them if they want to be your friend. If you got a yes, great, if a no, then you move on with your life.
As you get older, things get more complicated and we all carry around baggage. We all have our trust issues and damaging effects of relationships piled on our shoulders. When you try to make new friends people have a strong idea of who they are looking for, but sometimes this person we have created in our heads doesn’t even exist!
However, there are still ways we can make friends, but we do have to be open minded about the type of friends we make. I have friends that I have nothing in common with and those are the ones that I trust the most! These friends are the ones I wouldn’t give them up for anything.
I would still like to meet new people that have the same interests as me to get me out and about more often. The more friends that can get me interested in new and different things, the better!
Join a Group That Covers a Subject You Are Passionate About
Meetup is a great place to find a book club or a group of people that are interested in the same thing as you. They have groups for hiking, sports, outdoor adventures, dog lovers, cat lovers, etc. You are bound to find like-minded people on Meetup.
However, it will take some work to get to know the others in the group. Please make sure you ask questions about them and listen. If you see each other often enough in the group maybe invite them to do something with just you or find a local event that you both would be interested in going to together.
On The Job
This can be a bit tricky, but I have met a couple of my close friends at work. I worked at a call center and in between calls this girl a few cubes away from me would constantly show me what she is picking out for her wedding (dishes, table linens, etc). We’ve been friends for 10 years now.
I met another amazing friend of mine while working at Target in college. I was training her in and she just kept talking. She hung around me and although I wasn’t looking for a new friend, she was new to town and was looking to make more friends! This friend invited me to her parties and always made me feel part of the group.
The tricky thing about meeting people at work is that if you don’t get along after a while you still must see each other. It’s never a good thing to be real awkward with each other, especially at work.
Meeting Friends through Friends
The friend that invites me to all the parties, we ended up with one mutual friend. We were both singletons and vegetarians. We rarely did anything on our own, but it was always nice to have another friend at her party.
It can be a lot of fun when you meet friends through other friends and do things as a group. It certainly makes the social situations with people you don’t know easier when you have more than one friend around.
I do have a lot of social anxiety so knowing others in a big group can help me move around from one person and talk to others.
This only works if you have a dog, but you wouldn’t believe how many people you can sit and have a conversation with at a dog park. You obviously all love your pets to the moon and back. This is the place to sit and gush over your fur babies! Your pets are the conversation starter and as you watch your pups play together you can get to know each other. I mean, really, the next outing will definitely involve your dogs!
You could also have a good conversation starter like the cute sweater you have on your dog or the extra fancy collar.
I love the dog park and I don’t take my dog there often enough!
Volunteering is incredibly rewarding and makes you feel great, but you can meet a lot of new people just by giving your time to those less fortunate. If you enjoy hanging out with other animals, you could volunteer at the Humane Society or another pet shelter. You could also help feed the homeless or volunteer in a homeless shelter.
The people that you volunteer with share the same love of helping others and using that as a conversation starter will be helpful.
If you are political you could also volunteer for a campaign and meet others that share the same passion as you do!
I hope this list is helpful in you making new friends! I know that all of these have been helpful for me to meet new people. I’ve also made a few good friends from doing some of the things on this list. There is always a risk in meeting new people, but sometimes it’s worth the risk.
Especially when you gain a lifelong friend in the process.