How to Make New Friends

Ways you can make new friends.
by Updated November 15, 2012

Solitude isn’t really a bad thing. Being by yourself means more time for the things you want to do such as reading books, writing novels, meditating and many others. However, one has to learn to strike a balance between solitude and socializing. It’s just as nice to have other people to play games with, share thoughts with or even just spend time with. Here are some tips on how to meet people and build solid, lifelong relationships. As always, there is no need to rush.

  1. Make yourself available to other people. If you want to meet people, you have to go out there and let others know that you are ready to make friends. It’s very rare for people to knock at your door to make friends with you while you sit at your PC or read a book in your room.
  2. Try joining a club or organization with people who have similar interests as yours. The people you will make friends with don’t necessarily have to have the exact interests as yours. If you would like to try meeting up with people within your area, you can search the web via location. Social networking sites such as Google Plus, Facebook and Twitter are also great avenues to find people with common interests. If you’re looking for people who share the same religion, then a church, Masjid or mosque or any other house of worship is a good place to initiate friendship.  
  3. Get involved in a sports team or league. You don’t really have to be ultimately good at the sport in order to join; this is just a common misconception. The important thing is, you like what you are doing and enjoy it with other people. If you are more musically inclined, then you might want to join a band or a choir instead.
  4. Volunteering for a cause is another wonderful way to meet people of all ages who share the same passion. This type of interaction creates a certain bond with the people you work with
  5. Learn to talk to people you encounter. Strike conversations with the people in your group, organization, club or church. Have a chat with the grocer, the person sitting next to you at the subway or the person in front of you at the movie tickets line. While most of these conversations may not really last, you will occasionally find someone who can become a friend.
  6. Look at people in the eye and smile when you talk to them. People will find it comfortable to talk to you if you emit a positive aura and are more likely to become your friend. Some body language to avoid would be squinting, looking bored, staring into blank space and crossing your arms.
  7. If you feel like it, initiate a conversation. There are a lot of strategies that you can try. Comments about the immediate environment such as “Good thing it finally stopped raining!” a request for assistance like, “Do you think this green bag is better than this blue one?” and a sincere compliment such as, “Those are really pretty earrings you’re wearing” all make good conversation starters. If you get a response, you can follow it up with a related statement or question like, ”Do you think the weather will stay like this for long?” or “What type of bags do you like?”
  8. Have a little chat with someone. Keep it simple and cheerful. It might be about a complaint about something, but you might want to focus on how to make things better or what are the possible solutions that can be tried to resolve something. Conversationalists say that a 30% talking to 70% listening ratio is a good gauge how a conversation should go.
  9. Don’t forget to introduce yourself when the conversation ends. You can say,”By the way, I’m John.” The other person will most probably do the same out of courtesy. Do your best not to forget the person’s name, because if ever you bump into the same person another time and you were able to recall his or her name, it will show that you not only remember things well but you also pay attention and show good signs of being a good listener and a good friend.
  10. Call for a get-together. You can chat with strangers the whole day but you won’t make a friend if you don’t call for a second opportunity to get to know people better. You might want to do this especially if you meet someone who is highly unlikely for you to meet again. Don’t waste this opportunity!
  11. If the person you are talking to has similar interests, you might want to ask about this and whether they are involved in a club or organization. If so, then this is the right time to ask if you can possibly join him or her. You can also invite them to join your band, club, church, etc. and you can simply give them your contact details should they decide to come.
  12. Ask people if they might want to join you for lunch or coffee. This allows you more time to get to know them better. As the party draws to a close, you can say something like, “I had a good time and I have to go, but if you’d like to have another chit chat over lunch or coffee, here’s my number / email address.” This way, you are giving the other person a chance to reach you if they want to and it’s alright if they don’t give their contact details in return; don’t take this personally. Give your contact details to whoever looks like a potential friend, and sooner or later someone will eventually contact you.
  13. Be careful about pressuring someone being friends with you. Refrain from making jokes towards an acquaintance about not being invited to a party or dropping by uninvited unless it was clearly established that dropping by unannounced is alright. Avoid overstaying your welcome. In short, rushing is a no-no; some friendships take years to finally form. If you are unsure about the status of your friendship, ask your friend directly but politely. If something happens too fast, it might be too much for someone and since not everyone can say what they feel, you might find your friend running the other way because of you.
  14. Stay loyal when you finally make friends and avoid being a fair-weather friend – someone who’s only there during good times but disappear when crisis begins. A true friend makes sacrifices and is able to spare time and energy especially during hard times. You should be there for you friend both in good and bad times, and you should never complain about them.
  15. As a friend, you have to strike a balance in the relationship. Don’t forget to initiate activities, remember birthdays and generally be considerate of your friend’s feelings.
  16. Reliability is another important aspect of being a good friend. Be on time. Don’t be late during meet ups and let your friends know in advance if there is an emergency and you might not make it on time. Sincerely apologize and do your best so that it doesn’t happen again. Making your friends wait especially when you’re just launching a potential friendship does not make for a good start. When you commit to something, do it.
  17. Being a good listener is always an advantage. Show interest in others and remember personal details such as names, likes and dislikes. For you to learn more about another person, you can ask more about him or her and let them talk more. Some people have this perception that you have to sound really interesting in order to be considered as “friend material”. However, no one wants to be with the guy or girl who always wants to be the best person in a group or who changes topics in order to be the center of attention.
  18. Know when to keep your mouth shut. If your friend tells you a secret, it should remain a secret. The fact that your friend chose to tell you something they are hiding from the rest of the world is a sign of trust, and you wouldn’t want to break that trust in order to keep the friendship. Don’t be afraid to tell other people that you can’t divulge something that was told to you in confidence. Trust is something that’s something that is built, and it takes time.
  19. Choose friends who can contribute to your well-being, not harm it. As you build your network of friends, you will discover that there are those who are easy to deal and there are others who make life really hard for you. Overly needy or manipulative towards the friendship or those who continuously pose as a threat to your life. If you find yourself in a compromised situation, then you may really have to end the friendship no matter much you value your friend/s. Keep yourself busy with new activities or alternate volunteer opportunities so that it isn’t too obvious that you are avoiding them. It might not be polite if you simply choose to spend time with other people because once they notice this, it might cause jealousy and cause even more trouble. Treasure the people who contribute positively to your life and make it a point to be a positive contributor to your friends’ lives, too. 
  20. Your good qualities can always be an asset if used to your advantage. If you have a good sense of humor, then try to inject a humorous joke here and there and you will find yourself laughing with others in no time. Other people have a different approach to humor, so if you are someone who cracks jokes in a different way, you might want to let others know that you are actually making a joke. This unique characteristic of yours might     catch the attention of potential friends and you shouldn’t waste any time using it.
  21. Learn how to show support and encouragement to others. A true friend sticks around in both good and bad times. Do not embarrass your friend in front of other people by making fun of him or her even if you meant it as a joke. Show your support to your friends by compromising. For example, if your friend likes sushi and you don’t, offer to hang out with him or her at a Japanese restaurant and order something you prefer; you don’t necessarily have to eat sushi but you are showing your support by hanging around to eat with him or her.
  22. Try to find work, especially the types that involve interacting with others frequently.
  23. Confidence is another aspect of making friends. Show that you are comfortable in the presence of other people by initiating a conversation, even if in reality it’s not your thing.
  24. If you bring a friend along a party and he or she doesn’t know anyone in the party, let her join in the fun. Don’t be jealous if your friend talks to everyone or makes friends. After all, that’s the reason why you are in the party in first place – to socialize.
  25. Make new friends conveniently by using a friendship matchmaking website. FriendMatch is great site that can help people make friends rather than dates.
 


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