Are you in a friend rut, dearest?
Have you recently moved to a new place and need some comrades?
Are you ready to “upgrade” your friends and find some peeps with more similar interests as you? People who can lift you up even higher?
One of the most depressing aspects of working from home as an internet entrepreneur is that it’s lonely.
Actually, I can’t think of anything else depressing about working from home. Other than the loneliness, it’s f***ing awesome.
Interacting with coworkers is probably the one and only thing that I actually miss about having a job. (Especially because I’m hugely extroverted and need conversation with others in order to breathe).
I remember moving to Paris a few years ago and realizing for the first time that I…uh… didn’t have any friends.
I FELT LIKE A TOTAL LOSER!
I rushed home and RSVP’d to a party that I’d been invited to that night. I was terrified to go alone, but I knew that I didn’t have any other choice.
It was at that party that I met some of my greatest friends– people with whom I’ve traveled the world and shared some of my fondest memories.
As I’ve recently been spending a lot of time in Montreal and I’m working at home every day, I’ve made a grand effort to make some new friends here.
So far, I’ve totally succeeded in meeting some super rad people who I feel like I’ve known forever!
There’s nothing quite like making new friends who get you.
I’m so happy that I’ve been going out and meeting people that I decided to peer pressure you into doing the same thing, my darling sunshine!
I don’t care if you think that you already have the greatest friends on planet earth.
Stop being so jaded!
There’s over 7 billion humans from here to Hong Kong (hell, there might be 7 billion people in Hong Kong alone). I guarantee that you’d benefit from meeting some more of them!
Below are my best tips for making new friends. Some of these are things that I’ve done myself, and others are things that I haven’t done yet.
Take a look at the list and pick a couple of things that suit your rad personal style.
Hell, I hope you get so inspired by this list that you decide to come up with your own creative ways of making new friends!
Even if you just do this one thing, you’ll make more new friends than you can probably handle.
A couple of years ago, I joined a book club on meetup that helped me to readjust to living in the U.S. after returning from Paris.
Now that I’m spending so much time in Montreal, I’ve met 99.9% of my new friends from meetup groups!
The glorious thing about Meetup.com is that there is a group for everything. And if there isn’t one? You can toats create one!
So far in Montreal, I’ve joined women’s groups, business groups, hiking groups, etc and met countless people!
This is my other pocket secret.
I absolutely love starting spontaneous conversations with total strangers. Talk about an exhilarating and rewarding quest!
Not in an obnoxious way, of course. (We’ve all been a victim of that lady next to us on an airplane who would not shut up even though we were obviously trying to read a book!)
When you leave your house and go out into the world, don’t forget that you’re a human and you’re allowed to talk to other humans.
I notice that in big cities, it’s especially rare to see strangers talking to each other. Sad!
can’t tell you how many cool connections I’ve made by striking up a conversation with the gal sitting next to me.
(Please do be a dear and take note if the person is trying to show you that they’re not interested in conversation and don’t blame me if you don’t have basic social skills).
Why not break the mold and strike up a conversation? You never know who might be sitting next to you…
While Meetup.com is delightfully lovely, you can also find groups of people you’ll adore on Facebook.
I highly recommend that you “like” any pages for cultural institutions like museums, movie theatres, restaurants, etc in your area so that you’ll get notifications from them on your newsfeed when they have something exciting to share with you.
You can also do a little searchy search to find groups of people who share your interests. Get creative with the keywords, yo!
I’ve connected with a handful of people online who have become much better friends because we’ve met offline.
Once, I received an email from a lovely girl who had read my blog (years ago) and wanted to connect with me in Paris. We’re still good friends!
Recently, I did a little poking around for Americans living in Montreal and I found and met another wonderful friend!
And last January, of course, I was excited to meet up with Diana Antholis of Unleash Your Sexy in New York City. (And yes, she’s just as fabulous in person 😉 ).
A couple of months ago, I was sitting in the coffee shop in my hometown minding my own business when a girl sat next to me and started Skyping with her boyfriend.
The funny thing? She was speaking French with him.
And, of course, she had no idea that I spoke French. (Honestly – what are the chances of running into another French speaker in small town America?).
After she finished her convo, I looked over at her and said, “Hi, I just wanted to tell you that I speak French and I promise that I wasn’t listening to your conversation but I couldn’t believe that there was another fluent French speaker sitting next to me so I had to say hi!”
As I started talking to this girl, I noticed that another girl from across the room was walking towards us.
“I speak French too!” she said.
The three of us talked a bit and it totally made my day.
You can do this by doing things we’ve already talked about like joining a group on Meetup.
Get off your booty and go to a yoga class! Even if you don’t meet anyone, just BEING IN THE PRESENCE OF OTHER HUMANS will lift your spirits.
(If your but is as lazy as mine, you can take your laptop to the local coffee shop and start chatting up the barista.)
The point is, you’re not going to meet anyone while you sit inside your apartment writing blog posts or pinning cute shit on Pinterest.
Two weeks ago I was sitting at a coffee shop reading Dale Carnegie’s famous book How to Win Friends and Influence People when a server came up to me, handed me a folded piece of paper, and told me that some dude who was sitting across the cafe from me had sent it over before he left.
The guy had written, “Anyone who reads Dale Carnegie is a great person.”
When I went to pay for my latte, the server told me that the Carnegie-loving dude had already paid for it for me!
(Ok so this isn’t a friendship that I’m going to pursue, but I still think it’s a testament to how wonderful people can be if you give ‘em a chance).
Sometimes you’re looking for a specific type of friend to fill a specific sort of friendship hole.
Decide what kinds of friends you need.
Do you need more uplifting friends?
More active friends?
Friends in a certain area?
Friends of a certain profession?
Make a list of the types of friends you’d like. Then, ask yourself “where can I find these people?”
Go get ‘em!
C’mon. Who doesn’t love a great shindig?!
This tip isn’t for everyone, but if you’re into having people over, you could become that friend who hosts the best parties! (Everyone loves that friend!)
Once you start meeting new people, make sure to plan some sort of fun-time event that you can invite them to.
I love inviting friends from all walks of life and introducing them to each other. It’s great when all of your friends know each other!
The best part about meeting people who are already friends with your friends is that they’re 100% vetted. You know that you have at least something in common with this person.
Plus, the fact that you know the same people increases the chances that they’ll think of you when they make plans!
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© Courtney Chaal 2020
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Hi Courtney, this post really made me smile. 2, 5, 8, and 9 are some of my regular ways to connect with people 🙂 I agree completely about deciding what type of friends you want, so I'm going to add that to my New Year's resolutions. Thanks, NiK x
Great post Courtney!
Wow! I wish I'd had this article when I moved to Toronto three years ago! Now that I have friends here, I'm not going to slack off – I promise I'm going to use some of these awesome ideas to find even more. Thanks!