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Let’s face it: Making friends as an adult is hard. Whether you’ve moved to a new city, started a new job, or just want to expand your social circle, forging new friendships can feel like a challenge at times. At The Plan, we get it, which is why we’ve pulled together our top five tips to help you find and create lasting platonic connections as an adult.

Step 1: Embrace the Experience

First things first, let’s shift our mindset. Making friends isn’t a chore—it’s an experience. Each new person you meet is a potential buddy who could bring joy, laughter, and fresh perspectives into your life. Embrace the excitement and be open to possibilities.

Pro Tip: Approach new situations with curiosity and a smile. Even if you feel a little awkward or uncomfortable, everything will always work out. 

Step 2: Find Your Tribe

Think about your interests and hobbies. What activities light you up? Joining groups or clubs centered around your passions is a fantastic way to meet like-minded individuals. Here are some ideas:

  • Book Clubs: Perfect for bookworms who love discussing their latest read.
  • Fitness Classes: Frombarre3to spin or yoga, your city is probably bustling with group exercise classes. 
  • Volunteer Organizations: Giving back to the community is a noble way to connect with others who share your values.

Pro Tip:Use apps and social media to find local meetups or events. Platforms like Meetup and Eventbrite will give you the latest information on what’s going on in your area. If you’re a Columbia resident,ColaToday is a great resource for weekly events. 

Step 3: Take the Initiative

Making the first move can be nerve-wracking, but it’s also empowering. Don’t be afraid to introduce yourself and strike up a conversation. Remember, everyone appreciates a friendly gesture–even if they’re not shouting it from the rooftops. 

  • Compliment Someone: A genuine compliment can break the ice and start a conversation.
  • Ask Questions: Show interest in the other person by asking about their hobbies, work, or favorite places to hang out. People love to talk about themselves—open the door for them to do so. 
  • Extend an Invitation: If you hit it off, suggest a casual meet-up, like grabbing coffee or going on a walk together. 

Pro Tip: Keep it low-pressure and lost cost. Simple, friendly gestures often lead to the best connections.

Step 4: Nurture New Friendships

Once you’ve made a connection, it’s time to nurture it. Building a friendship takes effort, but it’s worth it. 

Here’s how:

  • Stay in Touch: Regular communication is key. Send a quick text, share a funny meme, or call to catch up.
  • Plan Regular Meetups: Schedule regular get-togethers to strengthen your bond. It can be as simple as a monthly brunch or a weekend hike.
  • Be a Good Listener: Show empathy and interest in your friend’s life. Being a good listener is a cornerstone of any strong friendship.

Pro Tip: Consistency builds trust. Make it a habit to check in and show you care.

Step 5: Be Patient and Persistent

Good things take time, and friendships are no exception. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t click with someone right away or if a new friendship doesn’t blossom overnight. Patience and persistence are your best friends on this journey. Literally. 

  • Keep Trying: Not every attempt will lead to a lasting friendship, and that’s okay. Keep putting yourself out there.
  • Stay Positive: Every interaction is a learning experience. Stay positive and enjoy the process.

Pro Tip: Celebrate small wins. Each new acquaintance is a step closer to finding your tribe.

Making friends as an adult can be intimidating and even a little nerve-wracking at times, but the result of new friendships is so worth it. By embracing the journey, finding your tribe, taking the initiative, nurturing new friendships, and being patient, you’ll soon find yourself surrounded by a supportive and fun-loving social circle.

Remember, every great friendship starts with a simple hello. So go ahead, put yourself out there, and watch as your world becomes a little brighter with each new connection.

Got any friendship-making tips or stories to share? Drop them in the comments below—we’d love to hear from you!

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