Being an adult is time-consuming. Your work and home lives occupy much of your energy and attention. You hardly have time for yourself, much less for other people. Read on 7 Ways to Make New Friends as an Adult.
However, you should make time for friends because their bonds are integral to your livelihood. What if you don’t have many friends in your area? Meeting new people can be difficult, but there are methods to the madness. Use these seven ways to make new friends as an adult.
7 Ways to Make New Friends as an Adult
1. Broaden Your Horizons
Getting out of your comfort zone is the first step in making new friends. Your daily routine may consist of going to work and returning home, with an occasional trip to the grocery store. What if your night consists of a Pilates class? What if you joined a local advocacy group?
They may seem unconventional, but these strategies are terrific for making friends. Entering a yoga class for the first time may be scary, but you won’t know until you try it. Leverage your favorite activities into something you can share with others. You’ll form bonds that will last a long time.
2. Sign up for Classes
Humans are lifelong learners. Is there something you’ve always wanted to learn but never started? You may be curious to learn Spanish or cook French cuisine. If you have an interest, there’s a good chance others share it.
Search and sign up for classes in your area that teach you how to do something. Other people will pay to get the same experience, so it’s an excellent opportunity to meet new people and learn something new. You can invite other classmates to your home and practice the skills you learned in class.
3. Use Apps
Organically meeting people is how many prefer to find new friends, but don’t discount technology. Nowadays, social networking provides ample opportunities to find people with similar interests. These apps are advantageous because you can know a little about somebody before talking to them. The green and red flags will jump out of the screen quickly.
When you think of apps, you may think of dating platforms like Tinder. However, there are alternatives for making friends. For example, the dating app Bumble has a BFF feature. Data shows Bumble has 3 million users using BFF to find their new best friend.
Another option is MeetUp. This app allows you to find groups and events based on your interests. You can see the participants in each group, where they meet and pictures from their events. It’s easy to join the fun — you only need to show up after hitting the join button.
4. Join Clubs
Most people have that one thing that makes up their entire personality. It could be Harry Potter, classic cars or woodworking. If you have a niche, there’s likely a club in your area for it.
For example, an easy way to make friends is to join a book club. These groups often meet at public libraries, so you’ll only need a library card to take advantage of the literature. Many book clubs are free, meaning you can share your love for Edgar Allan Poe, George Orwell, Jane Austen and more.
If you want time in the sun, try a gardening club. This skill is worthwhile for growing plants and increasing self-sufficiency. Gardening is calming and an easy way to make friends. Many universities and local organizations offer gardening classes or volunteer opportunities to contribute to community gardens. You can meet new people while making positive change in your community.
5. Volunteer for a Worthy Cause
One way to gauge a person is to see how they treat others. If they like to volunteer, the odds increase that they’ll be a good friend. Donating your time, money and energy to help someone else gives a sense of pride and accomplishment. Many local and international communities need volunteers, so the opportunities are plentiful.
You don’t have to look far for philanthropy — go to your local food bank and sort cans, pack food and serve meals. Do you have an inner Leslie Knope? Ask your local parks and recreation department about cleanup opportunities in public spaces. Do you have a soft spot for pets? Volunteer at your local animal shelter by walking the dogs and playing with the cats.
6. Visit the Dog Park
You may already have a best friend with your 70-pound labrador, but finding a new friend for yourself and your dog wouldn’t hurt. The dog park is a terrific place for both of you to make connections because your dog will do the work for you. They’ll run around and play with other dogs, providing a natural opening for you to talk to their owner. Dogs are lovable, so you’ll have plenty to talk about with others.
7. Take a Trip
The city you live in could have 500 or 500,000 people. Regardless, finding the time or place to meet people can be difficult, so you may need to think outside the box. One unconventional way to find a new best friend is to take a trip — even if it means going alone.
Vacations are fantastic opportunities to meet new people, attend public events, and patronize popular spaces like clubs and restaurants. There are likely tourists there aiming to accomplish the same things you are.
Taking a vacation is easier said than done. However, there are budget-friendly trips for vacationers like yourself. For example, consider Asheville, North Carolina. This Blue Ridge Mountains city features local artists and breathtaking views without breaking the bank. Another excellent option is Washington, D.C., because most attractions are free.
Making New Friends for Life
Making new friends as an adult feels more challenging than in grade school. However, it doesn’t have to be complicated. Put yourself out there and meet new people.
Use classes, clubs and volunteer opportunities to find friends with similar interests. If you don’t like strangers, leverage technology like Bumble BFF to screen before you meet. Making new friends as an adult is worthwhile any way you do it.