While work is an important part of life, it’s the relationships that really make it all worthwhile. Most of us are lucky enough to have some long-lasting and meaningful friendships over the years, but as with most things, friendships can fade with time. Making new friends is always a good course for a happy and healthy life, but forming those kinds of relationships can be difficult as you get older. But if you’re looking to build new friendships and introduce some new meaningful relationships in your life, here are some tips to follow.
Get out of the house.
You can get pretty comfortable in your own house, but it’s not very likely that you’re going to meet anyone there you don’t already know. In order to make new friends you’ll need to step outside your comfort zone. Get out in public, join groups, be a part of the community and then you start meeting new people. It can be a little scary putting yourself out there like that but in order to meet new people and form new friendships, you’ll have to really embrace your social side.
Add your own interests to it.
While you need to be able to step outside your comfort zone in order to make new relationships, you don’t need to base these new relationships on things you have no interest in. Instead of trying to make a new friendship fit into your own interests, build friendships by using your own passions and hobbies as the groundwork. If you’re a book-lover, meet people at a book club. If you’re a sports fan, meet people at a pick-up game of basketball. It’s a great way to meet people and established your friendship based on a common interest.
Don’t put up boundaries.
One of the best ways to ensure you DO NOT make friends, is by going out with blinders on. This is to say, if you’re looking to form new relationships, don’t begin by putting up barriers and thinking there are some people you can’t be friends with. There’s no guidelines for who you can be friends with, so don’t let something like being of two different generation dissuade you from forming a relationship with someone you connect with. The beautiful thing about making friendships later in life is that you are mature enough and have all these experiences that you can relate to a great many people.
Don’t push things too fast.
Legitimate friendships don’t come about just because you’re looking for new friends, they occur naturally. It can be difficult to let a friendship form by itself but trying to force a relationship when it won’t happen naturally only makes for an awkward experience. Meet people, get to know them and let time develop the friendship.
As with anything that takes time to develop, you have to be willing to commit to building a friendship. These things don’t happen by themselves and once a friendship does develop, it still needs to be maintained. If you make a connection with someone and want to form that relationship, you need to be willing to reach out and help to strengthen the friendship as it grows.