Are you good at making friends or do you take time to make friends? Do you feel making friends is easy or do you find it challenging to make friends or keep up with existing ones? Have you ever evaluated yourself on this aspect?
Those who believe they are good at making friends can read this post to enhance their friend making skills. Whereas, I’m sure the ones who aren’t already good enough will also find the post really helpful.
We usually know if we take time to make friends or to upkeep the existing friendships. If it really becomes a cumbersome task, we are even forced to question the relevancy and need of having friends.
“Be slow to fall into friendship, but when you are in, continue firm and constant.” ? Socrates
Why Do We Need to be Good at Making Friends
Each one of us needs friends, because a friend relieves the feeling of loneliness and helps you enjoy life. They even help to improve your health and reduce stress.
Having good friends in helpful especially when you are undergoing depression, experiencing panic attacks, phobias, delusions, or have had major surgery, and lost someone close.
Making friends does help us in many ways, moreover, if it is a requisite skill then we better be good at it, as simple as that.
Making friends is both an art and a skill, which most of us learn with time. Some are born with the skill and others develop it with time and experience.
“A friend knows the song in my heart and sings it to me when my memory fails.” ~Donna Roberts
Is it Hard to Make Friends
I had recently read about why it’s so hard to make friends for those who are over 30, and thought to raise this topic in today’s post.
I do agree to quite an extent that as you age, you tend to make fewer friends, though for some people making friends as they age gets easier.
The beauty is that anybody can learn this art at any age. When trying to make friends, you neither have to follow complicated procedures, nor do you have to perform any rigorous tasks.
Making friends can be an uphill task or an exciting one, depending on your circumstances and your personality, but finally it is rewarding.
Remember, it is not hard to make friends if you really want to do so. But before you proceed to be good at making friends, you need to understand more about what really makes a friend.
“A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.” ~ Elbert Hubbard
Who is a Friend
Let’s try to understand who a friend is and what can you do to make friends. Here are some indicators that may help you in making friends.
- Checks in without bothering about the distance. The friendship doesn’t end when your car pulls away or the plane takes off!
- Takes interest in their friends lives. They are always there, supporting and learning from them.
- Is willing to share, care, understand, and love you unconditionally.
- Compliments you without going overboard, yet is fair enough to tell you your faults.
- Is kind, compassionate, fair, and knows you through and through.
- Always remains loyal and is ready to make sacrifices when the need arises.
- Always puts forward their shoulder to lean and cry on if required.
- Encourages, motivates, and inspires you to move ahead in life.
- Is trustworthy; someone who you can blindly rely on and share anything under the sun.
- Likes you as you are without really trying to change you, even if they don’t understand you fully.
- Gives you the space to change, grow, make decisions, and even make mistakes.
- Allows you to express your emotions and feelings, without criticizing, judging, or teasing you.
- Doesn’t take advantage of you, instead gives you good advice when you seek it.
- Will not flatter you; instead tell you honestly what they think of you.
Furthermore, we don’t really have to keep in mind where our friends come from when we make friends, because they come from all walks of life, with all sorts of belief.
They might have different jobs, religion, background, or status. Sometimes they push us to the limit, while at other times they make mistakes – sometimes small and sometimes big. But they still remain our friends.
“What is a friend? A single soul dwelling in two bodies.” ~ Aristotle
I had to share this wonderful song that I’m sure all of you must have heard by Stevie Wonder and his friends – That’s What Friends Are For – enjoy!
That’s what friends are for ~ Stevie Wonder ~ You Tube Video
The Art of Making Friends
Making friends, either new ones or keeping up with older ones is not difficult, nor is it that easy. It all depends on you and the friendship you build or maintain.
However, before you start making friends you need to like yourself and feel that you are valuable. If you don’t think others will like you, you might have a hard time reaching out to those who may become friends.
You need to work on building your self-esteem and finding your inner-strength by treating yourself well. Learn to love yourself with all the faults you have because this helps you to love your friends with all their faults as well.
Do this by eating healthy food, getting plenty of rest and exercise, and doing things you enjoy. Remind yourself that you are a very especial and worthwhile person.
Also, remain your original self without trying to portray a fake personality. Let your friends see the real you, and if they are unable to accept you for what you are, then it’s time to move on and make new friends.
“A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow.” ~ William Shakespeare
Ways to Make Friends
Making friends is an art or more of a skill that each one of you can accomplish. All that’s needed is that you develop trust in your friendship and follow the following ways to make friends:
1 - Talk to people
You can do this by joining clubs, going to the church, or at school and college. Remember, if you want to make new friends, you need to spend more time around people by putting yourself among them.
Friends don’t normally come to your doorstep, and it’s mostly you who will have to make the effort to reach out and connect first.
You can even volunteer to work together, where you get the chance to meet people of all ages. Even community activities like sporting events, concerts, art shows, movies, or special interest groups are nice places to make friends.
You don’t really need to have lots of common interests to make friends. In-fact some of the friendship between two people works well where both don’t have much in common.
All you need to remember is to talk and communicate with people, anywhere and everywhere possible, without really being picky.
Ask questions about their hobbies or their likes and share yours. Keep the conversation cheery and light initially. Most conversationalist suggest following a 30/70 pattern, where 30% talking and 70% listening occurs during small talk.
2 - Make online friends
Making friends online has picked up a great deal nowadays. Speaking of which, I have some wonderful online friends now than I ever did before. In-fact, I have more of online than offline friends!
3 - Initiate a conversation
You don’t really have to wait for the other person to talk to you. Instead, you can start a conversation on your own.
Some ways to do this are by commenting about things around you or the immediate environment. Or compliment the other person, ask questions about the person, show them that you are interested in them also.
Some people like to introduce themselves at the end of the conversation, while others start a conversation by introducing themselves.
Either ways, once you introduce yourself, the other person also does the same and that can be the start of a wonderful conversation.
4 - Smile and be cordial
People are less likely to be receptive to you if you don’t smile or have an unfriendly appearance.
You need to be friendly, approachable, and not look bored. Don’t frown, or keep your arms folded that show you aren’t interested. Instead, just be your natural self and try to get to know the other person.
5 - Learn to listen
While talking is required, you also need to listen to what the other person is saying, especially if are trying to make friends.
You need to show that you are interested in the talks and remember important details about them, like their likes, dislikes, or interests.
6 - Plan a get-together
Once you feel that you have talked a little and there are things that you can carry onto another discussion – then plan getting together.
You can talk your heart out as you get more familiar with each other for which you need to meet more often. Meet up at any place that is common to both of you, or choose an entirely new place, whichever is suitable.
You could even plan to go out for lunch or share a cup of coffee to get more acquainted with one another.
7 - Don’t pressurize
If someone isn’t interested in making friends with you, then let them be. Don’t call them repeatedly or stop by uninvited if they are not keen.
Making friends takes time and if you are not sure about where your friendship is headed, then it’s best to ask and clear things up.
Sometimes old friends suddenly change or there is a breakup due to any reason. At such times, give things time and if they still don’t get alright, accept the change and learn to move on.
8 - Enjoy yourself
While making friends, have a good time by spending time with your friends doing interesting and fun activities, together.
Try going for movies, play ball, go to the beach, work on an art project, watch a fun video, cook up a meal together. Anything that gives you both happiness; and take turns to initiate such activities.
9 – Keep in touch
Once you have made friends, it’s important to keep meeting up often to keep in touch. Making friends isn’t a one time affair or something that you work on once and then leave it. You need to keep working on building your friendship.
You can enrich your friendship by making home visits to your friend’s place and spending time with one another. Make your friend feel welcome and comfortable at your home as well.
If you are too busy to meet, call your friend and let them know when you can meet next, or express your desire but inability to meet. You must keep in touch either ways.
“Don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.” ~ Albert Camus
Speaking of myself, my husband is my best friend! He is one person who is always around and with whom I can share just about anything.
Similarly, if you are married, you too can make your spouse your best friend and make your life’s journey worthwhile. You don’t really need anyone else if you have each other in your lives.
Yes, it seems hard to go out and make new friends, but you need to push yourself through those hard feelings and go. Most of the time, you will be glad you made friends.
Finally, when you are making friends, remember to be a true friend to your friend and stand by them. Though friendship usually takes a lot of time to cultivate, but if the seeds are sown well, they do reap good results.
“Like wine, a good friendship only improves with age.” ~ Turkish saying
So, this Friendship Day, reach out to all your friends and express your gratitude and show them how much they mean to you.
Happy Friendship Day!
Over to you -
Are you good at making friends? How do you feel about making friends – is it easy or difficult? Do you feel with age you make more or less friends? What tips would you give to get better at making friends? Share you experiences of making friends in the comments below.
Photo Credit: phaewilk