Adulthood is a struggle in itself and therefore many times we wonder, “how to make friends as an adult.” Because maintaining relationships is a nightmare for many. Not everybody is an outgoing & bubbly extrovert who can make & keep as many friends as they wish, all the time.
Adult life can change things up so much for people. Even many extroverts don’t have it all easy & smooth!
Although many settle for a compromise & try keeping themselves distracted from the unfavorable monotony of their daily lives as adults, some of us like you & I would rather look for a way to enrich our adult lives with the gift of beautiful friendships.
It can sound difficult, but so does everything that we are yet to attempt. I think we will get through this one, though!
How to Make and Keep Friends as an Adult
1. Having positive attitude
Step number one toward forming new friendships as an adult is to have a positive attitude before you even begin to act in the direction.
Having the correct mindset makes a lot of difference. If you are convinced of failure or rejection before even approaching anybody new, there is very little chance of you ending up happily befriended in this scenario.
So, what is important is that you must have a positive outlook & the right amount of confidence in yourself.
Now, remember what confidence looks like: It’s not “they’ll like me”. It’s “I’ll be fine even if they don’t”. Once you are here on a mental level, you are all set to enrich your life with new people & connections worth cherishing for long.
2. Be open to expanding your horizons
No matter what your comfort zone looks like, your future friendships don’t have to be defined by it. Outside of your comfort zone, there is a world full of unexplored opportunities. Go for them with an open mind & a will to enjoy what you learn.
If you can add value to your day, you can do so for somebody else, & it shows! Be welcoming of what isn’t familiar, & your horizons will expand beyond anticipation.
3. Identify who can be your potential friends
As an adult, you’ve probably had enough encounters with different kinds of people to know your ‘type’. You know the kind of people you can easily gel with.
You know the kind of people that turn regular days into great memories with you. You know who can or cannot be a part of your circle. You know what it takes for somebody to be a good friend to you & vice versa.
Put all your judgment skills to use as you go on looking at new people, but don’t forget to risk a few things here & there. As I said before, the comfort zone isn’t necessarily where all the fun lies. A lot of value can be added to your life by people who seem unlikely to be capable of doing so.
4. Use reminders on your phone
Yes, you intend to make new friends. But, as an adult with full-blown ongoing adult life, it can become a task to always remember important dates, special events, appointments, & plans. That’s where the reminders on your phone become your best friends.
Put important dates on the calendar. Let your phone lessen your burden & keep you updated & on time. Make that call to your old neighbor at the right time. Meet that colleague from your previous work on that Sunday as you had discussed.
Show up at your childhood buddy’s anniversary party without fail. It’s all in your league, now!
5. Consider invitations
If you are not the organizer kind, if you wait for events to be initiated by somebody else before you can go & meet people, or if you have social anxiety, consider the fact that invitations you get are a reminder of how people like you & want to meet you already.
They are accepting & welcoming of you.
Unless you are facing health issues that won’t allow you to get out, do not refrain from accepting these invitations. They are a great way to make friends, & this ‘way’ has come walking straight to you by itself. Make the most of it.
6. Pay heed to new things
If you’ve never tried Yoga, if you’ve never really painted, or if you’ve never watched a Marvel movie before… You know where this is going! All these new things that you are yet to try can bring you closer to new people that you are yet to become friends with.
7. Use your social media accounts
If you like music, you HAVE TO connect to other music lovers & have your regular jamming sessions!
If football is your thing, adulthood cannot take that away from you! No, no, no! You go out there & find a team to get into, on a lazy Sunday, & sweat it out!
If you’re all about theater, who’s stopping you from walking in & making the most of it already, perhaps in the company of other theater babies?
What good is social media if it isn’t used for connecting people at the best? Today, it’s easier than ever to find people of shared similarities or interests from around the world & stay connected for as long as you wish.
If you find a friend posting about an event you’re interested in, drop a like, a comment, a text, anything at all to reach out & make the most of that event together!
8. Connect with neighbors & co-workers
The easiest access to people is either at your place of work or in your neighborhood. There are plenty of people who would love a chat or two on a relaxing Saturday evening in your garden or a refreshing session of chatter during your coffee break at work. Go all in!
9. Attend a regular event
A guaranteed way to meet, connect with, & stick around like-minded individuals is to attend events you like regularly.
It could be a cooking class, a book club, or even a local charity. It’s all open for you to see new faces, read new minds, & invest in new energies. Nothing can stop you, not even adulthood!
Simple Tips for Friendships as an Adult
Manage your time efficiently
As you focus on meeting new people, don’t forget about other priorities on your list. Preferably, 10 minutes a day to call a friend up & have a short life-update chat is good for starters. Make your video calls when meetings aren’t an option.
Don’t shy away from exposing your vulnerable side
The best of friends are the best of friends mainly because them being their real selves when they are together. Exceptionally amazing friendships are always based on exposed vulnerability & accepted authenticity.
If you have to hide parts of your real self for somebody to like you, run! (Or, maybe, walk away less dramatically but very intentionally, that’d be the right thing to do as well).
Getting to know somebody begins with asking questions, of course. But this does not have to look like an interrogatory session every time a new person talks to you. That’d be rather repulsive.
Ask questions that help you know more about the person than the details they fill in forms when they apply for a job.
Let there be a give & take of personal information such as your opinions on the political state of the country, your most cherished memories, the movies you loved & why, or even an excerpt from your long narrative called ‘life’!
Learning about each other through questions is an easy way to figure out where your relationship with them can potentially go.
Smile & be welcoming
A journal called Motivation and Emotion published research that said smiling is the key to forming new friendships. Be welcoming of people when you’re approached or even when you’re the one approaching anybody.
Reconnect with old pals
If new friendships look like a hassle, go for the hassle-free way to friendships. Call the long-forgotten childhood bestie & find out how life has changed over the years for them. They probably might still be up for your company!
Reconnect with dates that didn’t end up in romantic relationships. You never know what friendship with them might look like!
Say YES to new ideas
As the rule of improvisational drama, you must “YES, AND” in life to be able to maximize it. Say YES to that birthday party invitation even if you only know the birthday girl.
Say YES to your office trip even if your colleagues haven’t chilled with you before. Say YES to the college reunion even if you think you may have outgrown your college mates.
An open eye will show you opportunities to connect with people around you, all the time. Go for whatever can be gone for!
On a parting note…
No matter how busy, chaotic, or difficult adulthood gets, friendships are always the preferred breath of fresh air. But it can seem difficult to maintain friendships as well, in the middle of all the chaos.
However, a few simple initiatives & little effort can go a long way. We are always one step away from an entirely different life. Enriching your life is easy through the way of making friends & sticking around.
So, if you ever wonder how to make friends as an adult, browse through our article to get a better overview!