HOW TO MAKE NEW FRIENDS ? 3 essential steps to finally make friends
Is it easy to make friends? Did you know that to the USA, millions of people suffer from loneliness? Isolation, social vulnerability, emotional suffering, the words come together to express a new phenomenon, a current malaise: loneliness affects people of our time.
Precariousness, family distance, professional failure, lack of confidence, complex… The causes are multiple, the result is the same: the negative factors multiply and create a vicious circle of solitude.
Sometimes there are specific events that account for this loneliness: moving, being alone in a new city, moving from high school to college, changing jobs, or feeling lonely after a divorce or breakup, and many others.
So, are there effective and concrete solutions to make new friends? A way out of loneliness and towards more well-being in everyday life? A trick to succeed in weaving links? How to find one’s place and integrate into society by being part of a solid and fulfilling friendship network?
If these words speak to you and evoke in you a desire for change, then pay close attention as you read on; here is an effective 3 key method for making and keeping new friends.
1. Modify your behavior to encourage meetings
Do you really want to make new friends ?
The first question to ask yourself is surely the simplest: do you live well with your solitude? As with any change project, you must first be sure that you want to leave what you are experiencing in order to move towards something else. Some people appreciate and even seek solitude.
They can find calm, serenity, meditation, like hermits living in autarky in the mountains. And they are not looking for new friends. But if you can’t see yourself living in a troglodyte cave 200m high in the Himalayas without friends… then you are ready to create links, to open your social network, to find real friends. Yes!
Why loneliness? Or, How to make friends?
One could ask oneself about the “why” of this loneliness, where it comes from, because of whom, what…. But this may take some time. So if you don’t have 20 years to waste wondering, let’s thank Freud kindly and move forward together through the “how”.
Let’s just take a few minutes to understand “how I do it” to be alone. What behaviors do we put in place, consciously or unconsciously, that could keep us away from others and prevent new friendships? What system has gradually become embedded in our daily lives, which today favors this feeling of loneliness and the difficulty to make new friends?
It sometimes starts very slowly, insidiously.
Harmful behaviors that prevent you from making friends
Here’s a list of behaviors that don’t encourage meeting people or making new friends:
- As soon as I leave the house, I put on my headphones to listen to music
- Whenever I’m bored, I watch TV
- I never talk to a stranger
- I don’t smile at someone I don’t know
These behaviors may seem normal, they are an integral part of our habits, and yet… They promote our solitude and do not put us in good conditions to make friends.
In order to stop the record and to eject this ritual that does not suit us anymore, it is important to become aware of the multitude of these small behaviors with negative impacts. For that, nothing better than to make a list of them.
A tip to set in motion the desired change:
Write down for each obsolete behavior a new one that you want to implement very quickly. What are the actions you can quickly put in place to build relationships with those around you?
Behaviors that help you make friends
In contrast to the previous paragraph, here are some suggestions to encourage contact and build relationships:
- Smile at one person a day on the street
- Look the baker in the eye
- Ask a question, even a silly one, to the person next to me at the coffee shop.”When I walk,
- raise my gaze to the level of others
These little things are in fact the basis for entering into communication with others, and eventually making new friends?
It is up to us to follow the encouragement of Matthieu Ricard, doctor in cellular genetics, Buddhist monk and author:
There is no big, difficult task that cannot be broken down into small, easy tasks.
Replace your loneliness with what?
Then comes the moment to understand what loneliness, what lack has settled in our life. The most effective way is to specify what change we would like to see.
Do I want to feel closer to my family? Do I want to have a lover by my side every morning? Or do I want to feel part of a group of friends?
And behind all this, is there a desire to be listened to, understood, accepted, loved? Or is it a desire to share moments of friendship, to live with new friends, to act together?
Putting my finger on what I am missing is to have a more precise idea of where I want to go. The project takes shape, the objective becomes clearer…
2. Accepting and loving yourself: a prerequisite for making friends
- Is it normal not to have friends ?
- How to use the internet to make friends ?
- I want friends
- Looking for friends to go out
- Single and without friends
- Can I live without friends ?
These are just a few examples of the thousands of similar queries searched via search engines like Google.
This shows the strong desire shared by many of us to connect with others, to create a bond. The good news is that where there is desire, there is very often energy. But that precious energy is sometimes wasted because it is misdirected.
If you want to be surrounded by more caring and loving people, you must first be that person, for yourself. It’s simple, but it’s the first step to attracting the sympathy of others. First, love yourself.
What kind of friend are you to yourself?
I suggest you ask yourself a question: How much do you love yourself ?
On a scale of 0 to 10, where would you place the cursor? Once you have found the number (for example 6), I invite you to ask yourself “Why not less (5 for example)? What do I have in me that I really like? “.
Don’t hesitate to write down, to take note of what comes to you. Then, you can ask yourself “Why not more (7 for example)? What am I missing to love myself more? “. In the same way, write down your answer.
This little exercise can help you become aware of your level of love for yourself… It is important to be aware of what is present in you that you love, and what you would like to see improved.
I suggest you welcome your answers with kindness, without judgment.
To concretely increase your self-esteem, you can give yourself a quick action to implement to go towards what you would like to see improved.
Adopt a positive language to better communicate with others
Our thoughts have a great impact on the way we look at ourselves. We don’t always realize the influence that our negative thoughts can have on our energy.
Becoming aware of what we repeat to ourselves every day, unconsciously or not, is a start to change. No more denigrating, devaluing phrases that prevent the building of new relationships or friendships!
Today, what do you want to hear resonating within you? What motivating and encouraging phrases would you like to say to yourself every day?
At the beginning, this will surely not be very natural, a little forced… but I invite you to continue. Persevere in these tender and benevolent messages, they will give you an unsuspected new energy.
Transforming your speech will considerably change your vision of yourself. And therefore the way others see you. If you become your own best friend, others may follow…
Love yourself to better love others
Deciding to love yourself means allowing yourself to take care of yourself. It is to dare to please yourself. Does this speak to you? If you took the time now to question yourself for a few moments: What is it that you prevent yourself from doing because of this loneliness, and that you would dream of living?
Going to the movies? Drink a coffee on the terrace with friends? Seeing the latest exhibition with a girlfriend? Dress in a style you like? Visit the country of your dreams? The list can be long, it’s up to you to complete it.
You just have to start little by little, by refocusing on what makes you feel good. And “doing good” is not necessarily in our usual comfort zone… it sometimes requires some effort. It may not be easy to take the first step to treat yourself to a massage in an institute.
But what do you think the benefits will be? How will you feel when you leave this special moment? What small victory will you be able to congratulate yourself on?
As you will have understood, before going to look for affection and benevolence in others, you can start offering it to yourself. A nice gift to start the year. And a good way to make friends.
Regain self-confidence and overcome complexes
In addition to self-love, self-confidence is another treasure that can be worked on and increased. It is an important additional element to open up to others and create a bond more easily.
Many people feel isolated because of a complex that is not well experienced. A gene perceived as a “physical defect”, excessive shyness, intellectual or social inferiority complex, financial difficulties…
All these factors can cause a distinct drop in self-confidence. If one of these complexes is familiar to you, it may have a negative impact on your self-image. It seems necessary to “take the bull by the horns” and get rid of them once and for all!
Complexes would not exist if the gaze of others did not exist: our fears of judgment, mockery and rejection would disappear at once. It is therefore up to us to play down the other person’s gaze, to get rid of the fears we project onto them.
A study has shown that two out of three people think that others cannot be trusted. What if, instead of mistrust, we installed trust?
What if we decided to start from the premise that “the other” is a potential friend, good and caring? What would this change in our relationships with others? And to ourselves?
3- Become aware of your value to build relationships
Loneliness leads to a feeling of uselessness
Today, 60% of young people say they feel useless. And this feeling is even stronger among those suffering from loneliness; these two elements seem to be linked.
In a transitional period when one leaves the family home to begin studies or to start a professional life, the loss of reference points and the distance from family members can create feelings of loneliness, abandonment, rejection and even uselessness.
Being a young adult also means having to find one’s place and integrate into society, which is not necessarily easy for everyone.
How to make yourself useful to fight loneliness?
What better way to create a bond than to make yourself useful to others ?
To find out how you can be helpful, all you have to do is connect to your talents. What do you do easily and well? What comes naturally to you that others recognize as a quality? What do you like to do above all else, and which seems obvious to you?
This is where your talent lies. This can be a skill as well as a way of being: “I have a gift for drawing, I have an ability to bring people together, I love to value and encourage, I am very handy, I have a gift for observation” …. And you, what is your talent?
Identify what makes you unique
These gifts are personal and make us unique. They make each of us a special, valuable person. Becoming aware of your talent means you can start to put your “added value” into action: what you can bring to others that they do not have.
This is where an important key is hidden: what will make you useful and attractive to others will necessarily bring you closer to them.
In your opinion, what can happen from the moment you decide to highlight your uniqueness? What changes, what transformations can there be in the way you look at yourself?
You will surely discover that if you match your talents and values to your actions, then very quickly your esteem will soar. Simply because you “risk” feeling completely you. Finally.
Use your talents to bring people together
Your talent for drawing can allow you to offer art workshops and your gift for connecting people can lead you to organize “date nights”, and why not make new friends?
Why not use your handyman skills to offer your services to your neighbors? Your natural ability to value people can be used to share kind words with your bus neighbors and your gift of observation can be used to be attentive to the needs of others, and offer your presence.
It starts with a look, a smile, a little word… it doesn’t seem like much, but it’s the key to connecting with another person. Without pressure or demands, just the pleasure of feeling that there is a contact, a meeting. And eventually why not become friends?
Your talents, but also your passions, can be the link with the other. There are many ways to share a moment, a passion, a discussion.
Whether it is through an association, workshops, a club, forums, websites, organized outings, there are many opportunities to bring together people who want to open up to others. It’s up to you to find out around which theme you want to link.
Your behavior influences the connections
Finally, a point that seems important to me is to be aware of what makes our own wealth.
Imagine a person coming towards you, visibly uncomfortable and seemingly in strong emotional demand; this can frighten you, and push you away from them.
Now imagine this same person looking you straight in the eye, with a big smile, confident and apparently aware of these riches… What will your reaction be? Will you want to run away from them, or get to know them better?
Friendships don’t just happen; we need each other. We are attracted to people who complement us well and who seem to be able to give us something, whether it is love, a listening ear, perspective, advice… It is a sharing.
And this sharing forms a balance in our relationships allowing them to be healthy and lasting
So remember that you are valuable and unique, that you have things to share and to bring to others. As Oscar Wilde said:
Be yourself, the others are already taken.