When you’re a kid, making friends can feel almost effortless. Then as a teenager, you have all the time in the world to hang out with your mates. As you get older, however, people move away or get married or have children of their own, and suddenly your social circle is shrinking again. Many of us feel this way as adults but are unsure how to make new friendships. With so many of us working from home these days, even making acquaintances in the office is becoming more challenging. Don’t despair, though, because as long as you stay open to possibilities, there are still lots of chances to make new friends as an adult. Here are some top tips for how to do it.
Try a new hobby
One of the difficult aspects of making new friends is finding people with whom you have something in common with. However, by meeting people through mutual hobbies, you can guarantee that there’s at least one activity you both enjoy. So whether you get chatting to someone at a climbing gym, during a local book or film event, at a foodie festival, or at the local skate park, take the chance to bond over your shared interest – whether it’s discussing the best BMX helmets or the latest bestseller!
Join a class
For something a bit more structured, try joining a class in your local area. This could be anything from a language class or martial arts group to a chess club, just pick a subject or activity that you have a genuine interest in and then strike up a conversation with your fellow students. The fact that it’s an organised activity can take a lot of the pressure off getting to know one another because talking to each other and working together is expected and encouraged.
A great way to both make friends and do some good in your local community is volunteering. If there’s an issue that you’re particularly passionate about, see if there’s a way you can get involved. It doesn’t have to be a regular commitment; even a one-off event will give you the chance to socialise. Not only is volunteering a good opportunity to meet people, but it can also enable you to learn some new skills and might even benefit your career by helping you to stand out in the job market.
There’s an app for that
Perhaps unsurprisingly, these days, you can also use several apps to help you make friends. For instance, organisations such as MeetUp and Eventbrite are great for finding all sorts of events and activity groups in your area. You can search by location or type of activity and browse what comes up until you find something that catches your interest. Even apps like Bumble BFF work in a similar way to dating apps, but for friendships rather than relationships. So be brave, put yourself out there, don’t expect too much too quickly, and most of all, have fun with it!