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How to make good friends as a grown-up


It’s a misconception that all good friendships are made during childhood. Yes, it is easier to strike up new friendships when you are younger because you are less stressed out, you have fewer commitments and you have more time at your hand, and besides, there are many study-related and sports-related activities that constantly push you closer to prospective friends.

As a grown-up you don’t have much energy. Time is crucial, and hence you don’t want to invest it in developing new friendships.  Whereas, when you’re younger, you have no concept of limited time (and hence you can be quite liberal with how you spend your time), once you are a grown-up, with job and career responsibilities and personal commitments, every hour, every day is crucial. Have you ever seen a kid or a teenager maintaining a to-do list? Grown-ups do. As you get married your spouse and kids demand more of your time, especially the time you’re not spending taking care of your professional commitments.

Once you move to a bigger city commuting also becomes a problem. For a good friendship you need to meet regularly, there needs to be many unplanned interactions and you need to feel a sense of proximity. With so much traffic congestion, travelling to meet a friend can seem like an extremely daunting task when you can easily spend time playing games or watching TV with your family or working on the next project. Even for 30 minutes of meeting you may have to travel up and down for a couple of hours sometimes.

Friendships are important especially in today’s world when a lot of your work may depend on solid networking. Not just that, a good circle of friends is important for healthy mind and body. Various researches show that people who have good five friends are healthier compared to those who don’t.

The first thing you have to do is let go of your old friendships if they have waned. There is no use hanging onto them if nothing remains of them. Although the older friendships no longer matter, sometimes they stop you to strike up new friendships. So in order to make new friends, in order to make that effort, you will have to accept that the older friendships (if that is the case, that is) no longer exist and your older, school or college friends, being at a great distance, are busy in their own lives. Then you start seeking new friendships.

This Business Insider blog post suggests that in order to make new friends, you should go to places where you would find people of common interest. Suppose you enjoy doing social work. If you regularly visit an animal care facility for instance, you will come across people who share your love for animals. If you like visiting the gym, there also you can strike up new friendships. What about a book club? Booklovers form greater friendships because of their intellectual bent of mind (not in all cases but it can be safely assumed). The key is, trying to spend more and more time with a person in order to like him or her enough to strike up a new friendship. Read the rest in the above-mention blog post.