Once you finish college and head out to the big wide world, it can be easy to lose touch with pals you made along the way while studying and from back home. Starting your career can be daunting and with a busy work schedule, it can be hard to keep in touch with friends and even harder to make new friends the older you get.
We often take for granted the ability to make friends while sitting in a lecture hall or by joining a society at uni, but it is so important to establish friendships in new settings. With many people still working from home, this makes the possibility of creating friendships even harder as we don’t have the same social interaction we would while in an office. Even if you do head into work physically, finding the courage to meet up with colleagues outside of work is not an easy task.
That’s why we’ve made a list of the 6 best ways to make friends as an adult so you don’t feel isolated or like you’re missing out. Check them out below and you never know, you might find a bestie for life!
Volunteering is not only great for the charity or cause you’re helping out, it can also help you get outside of your comfort zone and interact with people who are similar to you. Volunteer Ireland is just one of the websites that show where volunteers are needed. The more often you do it, the more likely you are to bump into the same volunteers and something as simple as grabbing a coffee after a great day’s work can lead to making friends.
Join a club
This is a great way to get to know people that have similar interests as you and where natural friendships can grow. Whether you join a football team, cycling group, reading club at your local library or a local Women’s Shed, putting yourself out there and practising a hobby with other people is a sure fire way to meet other like-minded peers. Websites like MeetUp are a great way to see what clubs are in your local area.
Join an online club
If you’re not keen on meeting up with people in public, there are plenty of online clubs that you can take part in where you can make friends in a less intimidating way than doing it in person. MeetUp has a variety of clubs that meet online, or if you’re looking for a book club, Fable is an app that allows you to interact with other book-lovers and discuss books you’re reading.
Talk to people more at work
This will be easier for people who work in person as you can do something as simple as asking a colleague to go for lunch with you and get to know them more that way. You can find similar interests and meet up outside of work to build a friendship rather than just have them as another colleague that you only see during working hours. If you're working from home, this can be more difficult as you're more isolated and have less opportunity to get to know your colleagues on a friendship level. But, even through email and text, you can get to know your workmates better. Organise a zoom after work if you live far away from each other, or, if you live close by, put the effort in to meet up in person.
Try on social media or friendship apps
You're not the only person in your situation. There are plenty of other adults looking to make friends and the power of social media helps to make that possible. With apps like Bumble BBF, or groups you can join on Facebook to discuss similar interests or share advice, there are plenty of places to make friends online. If you're into gaming, platforms like Twitch and Discord allow you to interact with other users.
Start going to an evening class
Attending a class not only allows you to make friends but you get to learn a new hobby. Whether its yoga, a foreign language or a cooking class, there are lots of classes out there for you to take part in. If you're joining a class where you learn a new skill, get chatting to someone else in the class and you can help each other practice before your next class.