People feel lonely at many different stages of life – graduating high school, starting university, moving to a new city, breaking up with a significant other, divorcing a spouse and the death of a loved one can make even the happiest people feel isolated. Being lonely is a tough emotion to handle, but it is fairly easy to overcome.
Making new friends is a great way to combat loneliness and lessen the pressure of being alone. By adding new people to your inner circle, you surround yourself with a wider array of personalities and more opportunities to get out of the house and into the social scene. Quality and quantity are both important when meeting new people; the more friends you have, the more experiences you’ll be subjected to.
However, making quality friends is equally important. A few ways to meet people who mesh well with your personality include:
- Explore your untapped hobbies – Do you pride yourself on your artistic talents? Take a painting workshop. Are you trying to explore your faith or strengthen your spiritual beliefs? Try visiting a spiritual group or meditation group. By participating in activities that you enjoy, you’ll meet new people who like to do the same things you do.
- Sign up for a gym – Joining a gym is beneficial in many ways. Not only will it encourage you to exercise, but by going to the gym on a regular basis, you’ll meet lots of other members. When you start seeing a familiar face over and over, invite them to a fitness class or plan to workout on the same days to establish a “gym buddy” relationship.
- Volunteer – Working for a cause that means something to you is a great way to give back to your community and an excellent way to make new friends. Participate in a charity’s philanthropy event or even host your own, and soon you’ll be hanging out with fellow volunteers outside of the organisation’s events.
- Play sports – Team sports are social in nature and provide endless opportunities to bond with your teammates. Practices, games and post game happy hours will fill up your schedule, and you’ll likely grow close to at least a few of your team members.
- Join a meet up group – There’s a meet up group for just about any interest: singles, LGBT and spiritual development are just a few of the groups available, categorised by city. Visit http://www.meetup.com/ to see what interests you, and attend the next meet up.
Meeting new people can be scary, but the outcome certainly outweighs the work you put in. By making it a priority to gain new friends, you’ll conquer any bouts of loneliness that set in and have a strong support group during a rough time or unsettling life event. To keep your relationships balanced, be sure to care for your friends just as well as they care for you.
So what are you waiting for? Get out there, have fun and make some new best friends!