Having people you can count on is such a blessing. Some of those people are true friends. 

While friendship comes naturally to some people, it can be challenging for others to make friends. Sometimes, we hold ourselves back because we either don’t know the importance of friendship or how to make friends as an adult. In this post, we’ll explore how to make friends as an adult and places you can meet potential friends.

How to Make Friends as an Adult 

1. Check out Your Environment 

Look around your workplace or residential area, you’ll find acquaintances who share the same values and beliefs as you and would make good friends if given a chance. 

Try to introduce yourself and initiate conversations when the opportunity arises. For instance, at neighborhood meetings, you could start up a conversation with someone you’d like to be friends with. Also, you could invite them over for lunch or a cup of tea.

This only works if you take the time to get to know the people around your environment. Actively listen to what they have to say before you decide to get closer. 

2. Stay in Touch with Old Connections

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You could rekindle friendships with some of your old connections. If your personalities align and you both parted on good terms, building that connection could lead to a strong friendship.

Besides building a friendship with someone from your old circle, they might also know someone they can introduce to you. In no distant time, you would have made more friends from a single connection.

3. Tap Into Social Media

Social media is a great place to initiate conversations and meet new people, whether they stay within your vicinity or don’t. Making new friends as an adult requires constant effort. So, rather than combing social media for friends, respond to people you have connected with. 

Better yet, you can only reach out to people who share the same interest as you. You can start by commenting on their posts that interest you and then reach out to them via direct message later on. After a while, you and your virtual friend can plan a physical meetup or get-together.

4. Accept Invitations and Show Up

Constantly turning down Invitations might be misinterpreted as a snobby attitude. Eventually, people would stop inviting you to any outings or events. This scenario isn’t a good one if you’re looking to make friends as an adult. 

Instead, accept relevant invites from co-workers, friends, relatives, neighbors, or acquaintances and show up. Be friendly, get off your phone, and participate in activities or conversations.

5. Be Open to Having Meaningful Conversations 

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Isolating yourself or shying away from meaningful conversations during a hangout might imply you’re not open to making friends. If you truly want to make friends, then you should be open to having more conversations at your workplace, an event, or whichever social gathering you attend. 

As stated earlier, don’t give all your attention to your phone or hide in a corner. Join in on the fun, start up conversations or actively engage in one.

6. Maintain a Positive Mindset

It takes understanding to make friends as an adult. So there is no reason not to start a social relationship with people who share contrasting opinions or have different mindsets. 

Approach every conversation or engagement with optimism and don’t assume the worst or be judgemental. Additionally, avoid using negative words or body gestures as it will put people off. Show empathy and have an open mind. 

7. Follow Your Interests

Get involved in activities or groups that interest you. Whether online or offline events, you’re likely to meet people who share the same enthusiasm as you.

Strike a conversation and offer to connect with them outside the group or offline. 

8. Go out more

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There are lots of fun places to make friends as an adult, but your comfort zone is likely not one of those places. 

Go out more and try something new, start a conversation with a cheerful stranger in the park or talk about music with the random person sitting on the other side of the counter.

Additionally, you can join co-workers or acquaintances (if you are introverted) to visit fun places where you can meet new people. 

9. Try Vulnerability 

Be free, show less perfection and gradually share information about yourself. However, try not to reveal sensitive information or overwhelm people with your life story.

When people learn more about you and relate to some of your challenges or success stories, they tend to draw closer.

10. Make the First Move

Take the lead when you’re in the midst of people you would like to become friends with. Watch their body language to know if they are interested, start a conversation and introduce yourself. 

You don’t have to get too personal but share great stories and practice active listening while they talk about themselves. Break the ice with conversations that would interest both of you, then ask for their contact after to keep in touch and gradually build the connection.

11. Be Willing to Help People

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Lending a helping hand connects one to new people and deepens connections, especially while volunteering.

Do you doubt that?

 A 2020 study on ResearchGate states that “by volunteering, adults reported outcomes including developing skills, improving well-being, and deepening connections with others.”

Commit to shared activity, join conversations and offer to do little tasks. Remember to ask for contacts to keep in touch.

12. Leverage on Unsuccessful Dates

Although it pays to build a friendship before dating, every potential date doesn’t need to evolve into a relationship. 

After a date, you might realize both of you are not compatible. It’s okay to move on to finding someone new. However, you can also make a friend from that unsuccessful date. This seems like a fair deal rather than cutting all contact. 

Also, you can make a friend out of an old date if the relationship ended amicably.

Remember, the focus is on quality friendship if you intend to make friends as an adult.

Read 12 Signs She Likes You More Than A Friend

10 Places and Activities to Meet Potential Friends as an Adult

Most times, one of the challenges that are stopping you from making friends is the lack of opportunity to meet new people. To solve this, here are some places to make friends as an adult.

1. Events

You can meet potential friends at an offline or online event. Start by accepting invites or buying tickets to nearby events. If you’re scared to go alone, invite a co-worker or neighbor to go with you.  

Besides being an attendee, you could also help organize an event at work or elsewhere. This could give you some control over the outcome of the event. 

2. The Park

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Visiting the park on a warm evening might land you a friend. This is because there are chances you’ll run into someone from your neighborhood who has been waiting for an opportunity to speak with you.

You could also make the first move. Look out for people you might recognize and introduce yourself.

3. Groups (Volunteer, Work-out, Parents groups, Book clubs, etc.)

Joining groups where you’re likely to find people with the same interests as you offer an opportunity to meet potential friends.

You can join a workout group if you like to keep fit or book clubs if you’re an avid reader. Other examples are parent groups, online or offline professional groups, and church groups. Additionally, you can volunteer for a cause.

4. Seminars 

Conferences or meetings for training are great places to meet like-minded individuals. Remember, it’s okay to make the first move and introduce yourself if you find the kind of friends you are looking for. 

5. Worship Centers

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Joining prayer groups, ministration groups, or attending other religious activities allows you to meet people who share the same beliefs and values as you. 

If you don’t know which to attend, search online for local worship centers or groups around you.

6. Classes

Skill acquisition centers or online universities are great places to make friends as an adult.

Most online universities have great communities you can join to connect with people in your field of study or around your location. Join conversations and don’t be shy to interact. 

7. Restaurants 

Some people frequent the same restaurant as you. Most quality friendships start with a wave and a brief introduction. Over time, you can get friendly with them whenever you run into each other.

8. Neighborhood 

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Your neighbor could be the best friend you’ve been waiting for. Rather than wave casually and walk into your house or shop, strike up a conversation with them. 

Plan outings or playdates for your kids together, and bond while you both supervise the little ones. 

9. Group Camping

If you’re adventurous, find friends by joining a group camping. You could search online for campgrounds close to you. Join in the activities you can, converse, and find like-minded people to make friends with. 

10. Online Forums 

Online forums are great places to connect with people who share similar or the same life views as you. Seek to know them and invite them for a physical hangout when you are comfortable.

Conclusion

Knowing how to make friends as an adult can take away some of the social awkwardness. Don’t overthink things when the opportunity to meet cool people comes up and don’t rush into making quick decisions when choosing your friends too.

Remember, quality friendship is more beneficial to your physical and mental health. Try making friends now. You’ve got this!

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