Say Hello to New Friends & New Connections

New friends and new connections

When I moved to Arizona, I didn’t know anyone and left all of my friends in Ohio. I wanted to explore my new home but didn’t have any friends to do the exploring with so I had to make new friends. 

In order to have adventures with new people, you’ll need to be willing to step outside your comfort zone. For many people, forming new friendships and nurturing new connections can feel difficult.

Sometimes, this difficulty has to do with a fear of rejection. You look at everyone around you and instantly think, “I don’t fit in!” Or you might be dealing with poor self-image and think, “People won’t like me!”

The truth is if you never try, your social circle isn’t going to expand. You’ll miss out on trying new foods, looking at the world in a different way, and enjoying community with others who accept you just the way you are.

There’s just one tiny problem. You don’t know where to start looking for these bold new friendships. Try one of these suggestions that will put you in the path of people you haven’t met yet…

Go to Meet Ups is a website where you can find local groups. This is a great way to meet new friends. These groups are often connected by a shared passion, like hiking, building a mobile app, practicing a new language, learning to cook, and many other hobbies. 

Sign up on the website and look for groups that would be a good fit for you. If you can’t find a meetup in your area, consider starting one yourself. Center it on a passion of yours and invite others to participate.

Serve as a Volunteer

Consider the causes you care about and look for a way to serve these causes. Volunteering will automatically put you in touch with other people who have the same hobby as you do and is a wonderful way to make new friends. For example, if you love animals, help out at your local animal shelter. If you love entertaining, consider spending time at a nursing home. You could engage with the residents, playing board games, singing silly songs, or doing arts and crafts together.

You can find plenty of good causes at Volunteer Match. Set your location then choose an interest like ‘animals’, ‘homelessness’, or ‘human rights’. The website will show you volunteer opportunities that are available near you.

Attend Conferences or Seminars

Another terrific way to form new connections and make new friends who also share your interests is to attend conferences or seminars. This gives you a chance to get to know people who are in your industry or want to be.

But don’t think you have to choose a big conference with twenty-five speakers and twenty thousand attendees. If you’re more of an introvert or don’t like big crowds, look for a small, intimate retreat.

Pay Attention to the World around You

Sometimes, making new friends and meeting new connections is as simple as looking around. Compliment your barista’s hairstyle. Invite your new neighbor to brunch. Make small talk with your cashier at the grocery store.

It’s easy to miss the opportunity to meet new people if you’re always focused on your phone. Challenge yourself to put it down and look around for people you could talk to and encourage. You never know what friendship might develop all because you took the time to notice someone else.

If you’re serious about meeting new connections and making new friends, you have to start by being friendly. What will you do to make new friends? 


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