How to Make Friends Post-University
After having a blast for the last few years, moving away from your close housemates and uni friends can be tough. Guest blogger Emily gives some useful suggestions on how to meet new people and make friends when you relocate or move back home.
As a child, making new friends happened effortlessly and almost daily. From kids’ sports to primary school, to graduation and university teams and socs, there were hundreds of opportunities to meet new people and make new friends. Many of these friendships stood the test of time, and many of us are still friends with the person we happened to sit next to in maths class.
However, things become more complicated once you’re out of the university atmosphere and no longer have those seemingly daily opportunities to meet someone new. Once you’ve left school and started your career, making friends as an adult can seem nearly impossible. There’s no more forced camaraderie in class, and extracurriculars are a thing of the past. Before you launch into ‘the real world,’ hack the well-kept secret of how to make friends as an adult, to make valuable connections well into your career and adult life — no loneliness post-graduation for you!
Start a Hobby or Join a Class
One of the simplest ways to strike up friendships naturally is by seeking out a class or activity you’re interested in. This is a great way to explore something you’ve always wanted to try, or to continue doing something you’re passionate about. Whether it’s a pottery class, a running club, or a local book group, finding local activities is an easy way to meet new people.
Not only is this a great way to get out of the house and better your skills, you’re also meeting people that have similar interests to you. This eliminates the need for awkward, ‘getting to know you’ small talk, as you know you already have something in common. Consider finding a few people in your hobby or class that you click with, and suggest you get drinks or dinner after your next activity. Friendships are all about effort, so make the first step towards making a new connection!
Use Social Media
Social media isn’t just a way to connect with friends you already know — it’s also a great resource for finding new people! Especially if you relocate to a new city to start your career, as many UK grads do, utilising your socials to make a new friend is a simple way to meet new people in your area. Try looking for local meet-ups, happy hours, ‘young professional mixers’, or ‘people new to [your city.]’ Often, those attending will be in the same boat you are: looking for new friends. Not only do you have a common goal in mind, you can skirt around the awkward initial approach when trying to befriend someone. It’s a win-win for you both!
Don’t Be Afraid to Reach Out
If you move to a popular area or big city after graduation, like London, odds are you have some connections there. If you know of a friend of a friend who lives there, or have a childhood friend you may have lost touch with, take the first step and reach out! Worst case scenario, you just meet up for a pint a few times. But at least you put in the effort! If it goes well, then you’re potentially opening yourself up to a new friendship circle. As intimidating as it can be to cold call or text someone you haven’t spoken to in a while, you never know if you don’t try.
Check out the visual below, for more instances of where you can find new friends, as well as tips on making those friendships stick:
About the Author
Emily Borst is a digital content creator for Bestow, with a background in digital marketing and creative writing. She has covered topics ranging from business to eco to lifestyle. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, crafting, reading, and eating her way through Austin, Texas. You can connect with Emily on Linkedin.