As a kid, making friends was easy. You went to school, played outside, or joined an after-school activity, and boom—friends, appeared. But as an adult, things change. You no longer have a set schedule filled with activities where you’re likely to meet new friends. Instead, you have jobs, apartments, and other adult responsibilities that make meeting new people challenging. Making friends as an adult can feel impossible at times. But don’t worry! Adult friends aren’t unicorns—many of them are out there! If you want to be more social in your adult years, follow these four tips:
Have a clear idea of what you want in a friend.
Before you go about the process of making new friends, you first need a clear idea of what you want in a friend. What do you value in friendships? Do you have certain friendship deal-breakers? When you have a clear idea of what you want in friendships, you can be more discerning as you go about making new friends. This will allow you to filter out friendships that don’t fit your values, while also helping you identify friendships that could be a good fit. This will make it easier to make friends as an adult because you can focus on finding people who want the same things as you, instead of just trying to find anyone who will accept you.
Don’t be afraid to meet new people.
We had many ways to meet new people when we were kids. We went to birthday parties, met new people on the playground, and played with random kids on the street. But as adults, many of us tend to shy away from those situations we loved growing up. But making friends as an adult doesn’t have to be terrifying. Sure, it might be a little nerve-wracking at first, but it will get easier as you practice! Don’t be afraid to go out and meet new people —many people are just as nervous as you are!
Be where the people are.
If you want to make friends, you have to be where the people are. This means going out to places where you’re likely to meet people who want the same things as you. For example, if you want to make friends who are into sports, then you’re going to want to go to places where sports fans gather, like sports bars. If you want to make friends who are into the same hobbies as you, then you need to find gatherings where those hobbies are being practiced, like a knitting meet-up or a sci-fi convention. If you want to make friends who are into the same things as you, then you have to be where the people who want to do those things are. This will make it easier to meet new friends as an adult because it makes it more likely that you’ll run into someone who you have something in common with.
Ask for what you want.
Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. If you are not sure how, then ask for help. Whether it’s with a co-worker or a friend you already know, asking for help is a great way to kickstart your friendships. If you’re shy, this can be a difficult step to take, but it’s so important! Don’t be afraid to ask people if they want to grab a coffee or if they want to go to a movie. Making friends as an adult doesn’t have to be hard as long as you’re willing to ask for help.
Making friends as an adult isn’t easy, but it’s not impossible, either. The first step is to know what kind of friends you want to make. Once you know what you want in a friend, you can go out and start looking for people who want the same things as you. Be where the people are and don’t be afraid to ask for help. With these tips, making friends as an adult will be a lot easier.