You're already busy with work, family and the other stresses of life, so you may not have the time to put yourself out there to make a new friend.
However, developing new friendships can help ward off isolation, stress and depression. In fact, research shows that social isolation is associated with unhealthy changes in the brain.
If you're ready to expand your circle of friends but aren't sure where to start, below are some tips.
Get Yourself Out There
Find people with shared interests, and then get yourself out there. You don’t have to brave a bar or go to a party on your own if that’s not your thing. Find a way to connect with people with like-minded interests, take a little bit of initiative, and get yourself out the door.
You can volunteer, join a yoga class, a book club, or check out a local sports club. There are plenty of activities available that will help you create connections and develop ongoing friendships as an adult.
Be open-minded about the people that you would like to connect with. You never know if you are missing out on a genuinely wonderful person because they might not fit your ideal of the perfect friend.
Leave behind your expectations and find out if there is something about the person in front of you that has something to offer. You never know; you may find some amazing friends in the most unexpected places.
Quality Over Quantity
A few good friends who truly understand you will be far more valuable than a large group of people who don't. Focus on developing friendships with people you like and feel comfortable spending time with.
The biggest mistake people make is looking for a large number of acquaintances, and not focusing on quality friendships. If you focus on the quality of your friendships and surrounding yourself with the right people, then quantity will naturally follow.
Deepen Existing Relationships
You might know someone from work or someone in your apartment complex with whom you have a passing acquaintance. These are great opportunities to make deeper and more meaningful connections, so put yourself out there and ask someone if they want to grab a cup of coffee or do something fun together.
It can be challenging to put yourself out there and make new friends. It is, however, even more difficult to be lonely and depressed in the absence of fulfilling friendships. Making friends with people you already know can be easier than with a random stranger on the street.
Create A Life That You Enjoy
Making friends all begins with you. When you are happy and engaged with the life that you are living, it is easier to go out and meet other people. Trying to make friends while holding onto a negative mindset will not get you very far. It it all begins with yourself and cultivating a life worth sharing with other people.
Meeting new people can be tough. Many adults make the mistake of staying in their comfort zones and not getting out to social events or attending groups they enjoy. Just like anything else, the more you go outside your comfort zone, the more likely you are to succeed. With practice and a dash of positivity, making lasting friendships as an adult is definitely possible.
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