If you’ve moved to a new town, finally have some more spare time or just need a few more great ladies in your life, follow these easy tips to make new friends. Trust us, it’s not as scary as it sounds!
Say yes: To everything! Even if it’s out of your comfort zone or with people you don’t know, accepting invitations to everything you’re invited to will open up opportunities and help you to meet new friends.
Invite others: Don’t just sit back and wait for the invitations to come to you! The onus is on you to make social events happen. Organise a morning tea at your house or a night out with the girls.
Consider work colleagues: While some people like to draw a line between their work life and their personal life, your office can be a great environment to make new friends. After all, you’re spending most of your life there, so it’s only natural that you develop close ties with your colleagues. Invite a few out for drinks after work on a Friday afternoon or even just catch up on the odd lunchbreak.
Take up new hobbies: You’re never going to meet new friends sitting at home, so think about some skills you’d like to learn or improve and take up a class or join a club. You could join a netball team, a running club, take up a foreign language course, a photography group or even a local community or environment association.
Reconnect with old friends: Do you have any old friends you’ve been missing but simply fell out of touch with? Now might be the time to make the first move and initiate contact again. Find more great tips here.
Turn acquaintances into friends: Friends of friends or even other acquaintances like your hairdresser or yoga teacher could be great friends just waiting to happen. Bite the bullet and ask them to join you and your family or friends for a BBQ on the weekend or simply catch up for a coffee during the week.
Be patient: Friendships take time. You shouldn’t expect to cement lifelong friendships in the first week you move to a new city, but have patience, be a good friend and trust that it will happen.
Be positive: Everyone loves being around a person who’s optimistic, energetic and supportive. A good friend will make you feel like you can achieve anything and even if you fail, they’ll always be there to support you and lift you back up again. Be a supportive friend to others and expect the same in return.
Accept your differences: Don’t try to force your own worldviews onto your new friends — especially when it comes to politics, raising children and religion. There’s nothing wrong with intelligent discussion, but avoid being insensitive, critical or judgemental.
Be yourself: Similarly, don’t let others pressure you into changing your opinions. Differences are what keep our friendships interesting; you should be able to discuss and learn from each other, not push the other one down or try to control them.
Be interested: Have you ever been stuck in a conversation with somebody who only talks about themselves? Excruciating, isn’t it? When we get nervous, we have the tendency to get over-chatty and start talking non-stop, but remember that new friends will appreciate being asked about themselves too. Take an interest in their work, friends and family and give them the opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings with you.
Don’t gossip: Sometimes we fall into the trap of thinking that bits of gossip or secret information will help us to bond with our new pals, but in fact, the opposite is true. If they see you talking about your friends behind their backs, they’re going to assume you might do the same to them. Friendships are built on trust, so don’t overshare and be respectful to everyone in your group.
Nurture your friendships: Don’t be a selfish friend who only contacts others when it suits you. Being there for your mates through thick and thin is the only way to preserve your friendships over the long term. Treat your friends as you would like to be treated.