Monday, October 25, 2010

Making New Friends

When was the last time you made a new friend? Last week? Last year? In fourth grade?

Photo by foto-mix-24

I've moved many, many times, and in the process, made new friends. Local friends are important to me. It's difficult to move to a new town and not know anyone. I've narrowed down the obvious ways to meet new people if you're a recent transplant to a new area.

- If you get a new job, you can make an effort to get to know your co-workers.

- If you're a stay-at-home parent of small children, you can join a playgroup or attend storytime at the library.

- If you're a stay-at-home parent of school-aged children, you can meet other parents from your child's school.

- If you're retired, you can join a club of your choice. There are book clubs, knitting circles, gardening clubs--you name it.

- If you're a college student, you have an entire campus of people to befriend.

- You can join a gym or exercise class.

It really doesn't matter where you meet new people, it matters that you make a point to interact with them. Try not to be too needy or aggressive at first or you might scare them away. Introduce yourself, make a little small talk, and move on. The next time you see them go ahead and seek them out. Use your own judgment if they seem responsive to your overtures. Not everyone is looking for new friends. Not everyone is in a good place in life. Don't take it personally, just move on. It's okay to experiment.

How do you make new friends? Do you reach out to newcomers in your circles?

Join me on Wednesday. We're sharing gift ideas for friends.


  1. I love making new friends. Finding a BFF though is something is rare. And when you have one, they're to be treasured. I still have friends from high school and though they're out-of-town, we're still close.

  2. I'm in that difficult stage. I no longer have children to make it easy to bond with other parents with and we aren't retired so it has been difficult. I don't work, and don't go to the gym (but when I did everyone walked around with headphones on) and we are attending a church where 85% of the people are older than 70. Choices are limited here in this transient area and I long for those friends I have back home.

  3. I moved to a new town four years ago and am still working on expanding my circle of local friends. My first friends I found through a neighbourhood book club, and they are fabulous. Now that I'm on a swim team, I'm making tonnes of new friends there.

    It's definitely a concerted effort now though, as opposed to when I was younger... we would move and I'd have my circle set up by the end of the week.

  4. I don't have a lot of fear when it comes to taking risks and reaching out to make new friends.

    The friendship I have with the lady I pray with (about our writing) is somewhat new. My pastor's wife told me she just had a book published. I'd seen her at a few Beth Moore events. An email sent. And there you have it.

    We've developed a great bond.
    ~ Wendy

  5. I remember moving to a new area when I was married and my kids were small. I made wonderful new friends through my kids, and eventually through my husband's work. Now I'm back 'home' but of my friends are in relationships so feel excluded from the couple stuff. I do need to make more effort to make new friends. I wish it could be as simple as bringing the right snack to share for recess like when in grade school!

  6. Raising a coffee cup in a toast to friends ... Including virtual blog friends! Cheers :)

  7. Interesting and motivating post. Another way to make friends is via a blog. We've bought a house in Naples, FL and are trying to sell our California house so we can move. In the meantime, I've joined a writers group in Naples, and they send me information and my husband and I were actually invited for a drink at one of the writers' when we visited. It turns out we both love the Caribbean and traveling around. Another lady I also met through my blog, and she is waiting for me as a new friend, when we move.

  8. Blogging has been my newest friends. Some new acquaintances at church but not friends yet. :O)

  9. Good morning!

    Em: Me too, and I agree, good friends are to be treasured. :)

    Terri: Sometimes where we live or the phase in life we're in makes it difficult to find new friends. I'm sorry you're in one of those times.

    Kelly: I agree, it's much harder to make new friends as we get older.

    Wendy: Why doesn't that surprise me? :)

    Lynn: Yeah, it's tough when our friends have different life issues than we do. Recess and snack sharing is no longer an option! Too bad...

    Joanne: Raising mine in return: Cheers!

    GutsyWriter: Why didn't I make that a point--find writers! They're the most generous people I know! Best wishes on your move.

    Diane: Blogging...ahhh...such a great way to find like-minded friends. Great point!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  10. I'm making new friends because my son is playing basketball for the first time. There's something immediately bonding about rooting for the same team, cheering on each other's sons.

  11. Love making new friends. I bet you are such a good friend, Jill. These posts have been uplifting and fun!

  12. Hi Jill. Mostly I make new friends by being introduced to them by existing friends or meet them at larger gatherings. I love meeting new people that I share a connection with. Thanks!

  13. Having friends is so important. I used to be too quiet and shy to make friends easily, but have learned that you have to reach out to others to make friends. Caring about other people, being interested in them and what they have to say is a good way to get to know new people. Thanks for your post, Jill, and the encouraging suggestions for meeting new people.

  14. Erica: Oh yes! The kids' sports teams are a great way to make friends!

    Katie: What a nice compliment. Thanks!

    Paul: I'm forever grateful to anyone who takes the initiative to introduce me to a new group!

    Connie: Such good points. Getting out of our comfort zone and really caring about what someone says to us is essential in friendship.

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  15. I love making new friends, but I'm very much an introvert. I like having a small circle of really good friends. So while I'm not cliquish, I don't feel the need to make a ton of friends. I don't have the energy to invest in that many.

  16. Hi Jill -

    When I moved to my current state, I felt so alone. Little by little, I met people at church, a writers group, and a yearly writers conference. I also attended a small home Bible Study group for a year and met some awesome people.

    Susan :)

  17. I've met new people in the last bunch of years with our move to KY. I've also made new friends through writing and blogging, which has been a huge blessing.

  18. Kristen: Time is a huge issue with friendships. You're wise to spend it with your closest friends.

    Susan JR: How could I leave church off the list?? I've made such good friends at every church I've attended. Thanks for the reminder!!

    Karen L: Nice! And writers and bloggers are blessings!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  19. Excellent. Spoken like someone whose been there and done that.

    I just realized from your list that I recently made several new friends at the library where the under 2s hear stories and do finger plays. What a fun way to meed new people.

  20. Jill:
    I feel I made a new friend this past Sunday night at a Bible study at a sister church. She asked several of us if we would like to contribute to their Advent devotional they put together. Then I found out she had ties to where my husband grew up. She also realized she knew his late sister.
    It's hard for me to make friends because of some of the things I have been through in my life. But I do have two very close friends. I have a few others who are becoming closer as I get to know them better.

  21. Nancy: Story times are a great way to meet fun people! So glad you're able to go!

    Quiet Spirit: Wonderful! It's not the quantity of friends that matters--it's the quality.

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  22. I love your suggestions! I'm so busy that my friends are at the kids social events, their extra schooling classes, etc... It's a busy life but a fun one!

    BTW, I had another emergency dental visit for that same tooth! The fun never ends!


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