I’ve been fortunate to have a core group of best friends since middle school. I love those women fiercely, but now that we’re in our (late) thirties, it’s become harder to find time to chat, let alone get together.
I’ve also been lucky enough to get close to a friend or two at the various jobs I’ve had throughout my life. I don’t talk to these individuals every day anymore, but during those times in my life, they were integral.
I’ve since put my career on hold to stay home with my infant daughter and picked up a freelance writing job. I’m able to stay home, while having a creative outlet–it’s great. But as I reflect on the last year of my life, I wonder, “How will I make friends now?”
Sure, I have that one friend I call regularly, but she lives about an hour away and can’t always visit. But finding a few friends in town should be easy, right? Well, being in a worldwide pandemic has definitely put a damper on that option. But as more people get vaccinated, I am committed to finding some friends.
So, here’s my plan, and maybe you’ll be inspired to go friend-finding, too.
Reach Out To An Old Friend Or Colleague
Okay, this may seem like a cop-out, but nobody said anything about having to make new friends, right?
Reach out to that old colleague you had a lot in common with but could never find time to socialize outside of work. Text them to meet up for a cup of coffee. Or call that old friend you haven’t talked to in a while. Life gets busy, but making an effort to reach out can rekindle a past relationship.
Utilize Social Media And Apps
This is something I’m not too comfortable with yet, but it’s definitely one of my options.
Most people have some sort of social media, so use it for its original purpose. But be upfront that you’re just looking for friends–that way, nobody gets the wrong idea.
Apps like Peanut (an app for new moms), Meetup (an app to meet like-minded people) and Bumble BFF (an app for women searching for other female friends) are great ways to start friendships and learn about people in your community.
You can even make it a group thing! Reach out to a few online friends and have a meet-up at a local cafe or restaurant.
Join Groups And Clubs
Getting involved in your local community will help you keep busy and may even help you gain a few friends. Plus, you’ll already be surrounded by people who have at least one thing in common with you.
Political activist groups, local mom groups, reading clubs, philanthropic groups and volunteering are some examples that may be found in your community.
Lastly, be open-minded. Don’t let age, gender, race, religion or anything else get in the way of making a new friend. Be an equal-opportunity friend!
You never know, the old man next door may be your next BFF. Strike up a convo next time you see him out and about. But try not to get your feelings hurt if it doesn’t work out, and I’ll do the same.