How to make friends: A complete guide with practical tools to find and maintain friendships

As the old saying goes, “Good things come to those who wait.” However, that is not always true: sometimes good things come to those who take action and make it happen.

This is particularly relevant when we are talking about making friends. Making new friends can be difficult if you don’t know where to start. And there is no handbook on how to make friends.

Friendship is one of the most important things in life because without friends we would be lonely and sad.

So we need to find ways to make new friends such as talking with strangers at school or outside activities or even joining an organization that has similar interests like yours will help increase socialization skills which lead them towards good relationships.

Thus becoming happier people in society today while being self-sufficient without relying too much from others since this kind of lifestyle tends more towards death than living happily ever after.”

 This article will help you put yourself out there so that you can connect with others in meaningful ways.

Also read: 21 Psychological tricks to get someone to like you

How to make friends?

There are a lot of ways to make friends and keep them for life. One way is getting out of your house and meet new people. After meeting you can start socializing with them by texting, calling or even hanging out. 

Another way is to go places where the people share similar interest as yours, such as clubs, sport groups etc. You can also find these kind of people on social-media sites like Instagram and Facebook. 

I think the best way to make friends (that last forever) is just being yourself and being honest with each other. 

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Ultimately we all want someone that we can trust with our life and also confide in when it comes to your feelings or something important you need advice on. By doing that you’ll make more friends than you ever thought possible!

Here are some tips to make good friends:

  • Don’t be afraid to make the first move. It’s natural to feel nervous about striking up a conversation with someone you don’t know, but you shouldn’t let that stop you from saying hello. Ask questions and give compliments. People love it when others show interest in them. If you are struggling to think of subjects, try thinking about your favourite books, films, or TV shows and asking if they like them too.
  • Try to be positive as much as possible. Negative people tend to become more negative over time and lose friends as a result. Instead of focusing on what makes you sad or angry, try focusing on things that make you feel happy or excited. You will soon find people appreciate being around you more than they did before!
  • Be honest with people about how you feel (and vice versa). The best way to build trust between two friends is by communicating openly and honestly with each other—even if it means sharing something unpleasant like your feelings towards a particular decision made by either party involved in said friendship!

10 Steps to make friends easily and effectively

1. Find friends where you already spend time

Find friends where you already spend time

One of the simplest ways to make friends is by going to places where you know you’re likely to see the same people repeatedly.

This is a great way to get started because it doesn’t require much effort beyond showing up. If you go somewhere regularly, then after a while, people will start to become familiar with your face and maybe even want to strike up a conversation.

Some examples of places where you might already spend time are:

  • Work
  • School (college, high school, etc.)
  • A gym or other fitness class
  • Online through a hobby or activity (forums, message boards, etc.)

But what if you don’t already spend time in any social environments? Don’t worry! It’s never too late to try something new.

Take an exercise class at your gym or join an online forum about something that interests you.

In any case, the idea is that if you are in the same place regularly, then eventually people will remember who you are and start talking with you on their own initiative!

2. Look for common interests

One of the best ways to find people you have things in common with is by looking for groups that share your interests. These groups, whether they’re clubs, organizations or just a group of friends who get together to talk about their favorite shows, provide opportunities for you to connect with like-minded people.

You may also have coworkers with whom you share interests. Taking time to chat about your hobbies might help you realize how much you have in common and could lead to spending more time together outside of work—and a potential friendship.

Don’t assume that there aren’t things bringing people together just because they don’t appear so at first. By keeping an open mind and talking about what’s important to you and the other person, it’ll be easier to develop new friendships based on shared interests and experiences.

3. Show up to social events

One of the most important things that you can do to make friends is to simply show up.

Showing up at a social event lets people know that you are present, which makes it incredibly easy for people who want to meet others to find you.

It’s also much easier for people who want to get better at making friends if they have more opportunities to practice doing so.

That said, try showing up early! Even if you’re nervous and don’t really want to, arrive early enough that there aren’t just immediately a ton of other people there because then they won’t notice you as much when they arrive later on.

And here’s a secret: bring along a buddy! Having someone with you will help keep your anxiety down and make it more likely that other people will come talk with the two of you because one person is less intimidating than two.

When it comes down to it, just be yourself! You never know who else might be feeling like an outsider or just not in their element but still wanting desperately for some good conversation.

Be willing to help them out by being friendly, open-minded and smiling whenever possible – all of this shows everyone around how positive and fun an individual you truly are!

4. Be open and talkative when necessary

Be open and talkative. If you’re reserved, it can be difficult to approach people and make new connections, but there are a few ways around this.

Try smiling. People who smile appear more attractive, trustworthy, and friendly than those who don’t smile. Even if you’re feeling shy or nervous, forcing yourself to smile will help you look more approachable and will also improve your mood!

Asking questions is a great way to show that you’re interested in what someone has to say—but make sure it’s the right person doing the asking.

It’s okay for one person in the conversation to ask all of the questions for a while, but eventually the other person should chime in as well. You don’t want your conversation partner to feel like they’re being interviewed!

Listen well by making eye contact with the speaker and nodding your head occasionally while they talk (it shows that you’re paying attention).

A good listener should engage with what’s being said by nodding their head at regular intervals during pauses in speech rather than interrupting the flow of conversation by voicing agreement or disagreement too quickly (this could easily lead into an awkward argument).

5. Be generous and kind

It’s hard for people to be at ease with someone if they’re not being generous, kind, and supportive. You can’t make a friend from scratch over the internet; you have to be open to making friends and look for the messages that are out there.

There are three main ways you might encounter others on the internet that could help you become more effective with your efforts: Simply visiting the sites of people who already like you will make it easier for those people to see said sites.

So it’s worth checking in every once in a while (otherwise, they may never reach out). Also, being friendly towards everyone makes it easier for them to reach out to you when they want something—mechanics also work in your favor as well.

And finally, just letting people know that you exist and aren’t shy about interacting is always good.

6. Ask questions and be an engaged conversationalist

Asking questions that require a person to think about their answer and share something about themselves instead of giving a one-word response is the best way to encourage conversation.

It also takes the pressure off you to be the center of attention all the time, which can be intimidating for some people.

The trick is not to ask a question and then jump in with your own thoughts. Let them speak (or at least take time to think), and then respond when they’ve finished.

While they’re speaking, don’t plan what you’re going to say next—instead, listen closely and try to engage with what they’re saying by nodding along or asking follow up questions.

Another great tip is to show your interest by leaning slightly in toward your conversation partner as they speak. This encourages them to continue talking because it shows that you are listening and engaged with what they’re saying.

7. Be interested in the lives of the people you meet

Being interested in the lives of the people you meet isn’t only a way to get to know them; it’s also a way to deepen your own perspective. Ask about the hopes and dreams of the people you meet. 

You can make friends with anyone if you are interested in their stories and experiences.

In fact, you’re likely to end up talking to a lot of people if you’re willing to be polite, listen well, and ask about their lives and interests.

Here’s how it works:

Be curious about the world around you. The more curious you are about the world around you, the more people will like that about you.

If you can be interested in others’ stories, they will learn to be interested in yours. Many of your friends will have great stories that come from either their own experiences or those of other people they know.

Ask about their interests. Easy ones include sports teams (basketball vs soccer), favorite movies, books, music etc.

This is also an easy way to get a conversation going because asking someone what they like usually leads them into telling a story they may not otherwise tell someone else (assuming they trust them).

If this doesn’t work, try asking questions such as “What made me decide to become a teacher?” or “What do you think is important when deciding on a school for your child?”.

You might be surprised at how much someone will like talking about something that isn’t related to themselves or their immediate experience!

8. Attract the right kind of friends with your personality

Now that you’ve got your goals in mind, it’s time to think about what kind of friends you want to attract. What do you have to offer a friend? What kind of person would be a good match for this side of your personality?

The best friendships are those between people who share common interests, hobbies and values. If one person is outgoing and vivacious while the other is shy and studious, they may find themselves at odds.

If one person prefers a quiet night in while the other likes going out, they may struggle to find things they have in common. The key here is finding someone who can complement your positive traits rather than magnify negative ones.

If you’re looking for someone who laughs easily and loves trying new things, focus on how funny and adventurous you can be rather than on how much of an introvert or neat freak you are.

And when it comes down to it, don’t try to pretend like you’re something or someone that you’re not.

You don’t want to attract friends by pretending; sooner or later, your true colors will come out.

Instead of trying to change yourself completely just to get along with others, try changing those aspects that might make making friends difficult for you so that others can see your personality at its best!

9. Give it a time to build the friendship naturally without any desperation and force

Once you have started to know the person, keep in mind not to rush things and make desperate attempts.

Give it time naturally to let your friendship grow. Many people try too hard on making friends but end up pushing the person away instead of drawing them closer.

This is because they are too desperate for a friend and are not giving it enough time for both parties to be comfortable with each other before getting deep into a friendship stage.

Have their contact number or any other details that can help you stay connected with them. Don’t worry if you don’t have their contact details, just ask them if they can give one and they would most probably do so.

10. Set boundaries until you know your friendship is valuable and trust the process.

  • Set boundaries until you know the friendship is valuable and trust the process.

There’s nothing wrong with being guarded, even after you’ve known someone for a while. Human relationships are complicated.

Remember that you’re not obligated to share anything about yourself that you don’t want to share. You don’t have to disclose every aspect of your life or personality in order to prove that you’re a good person or worthy of friendship.

Instead, start slowly and set boundaries until you feel comfortable and can trust the process.

  • Be careful about trusting someone too much too soon. At first it’s easy to appreciate someone who makes us feel heard and valued, but this doesn’t mean we should tell them our deepest secrets right away or let them know all of our vulnerabilities early on in the friendship before we really know who they are as people

Final thoughts:

Making friends should not be a difficult process. Once you find like-minded people, it’s easy to bond over shared interests.

Just remember to offer your friendship without expecting anything in return. Soon enough, you will have a strong social network filled with interesting and supportive individuals.

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Author
Naveen Bommakanti

Naveen is Experienced Psychology and philosophy Writer, self-help and relationship Coach and thought influencer. He has 7 years of experience in Personal development industry.

Naveen’s expertise as a self-help and relationship Coach has been highlighted through his articles in thoughtcatalog, themindsjournal, elephantjournal, power of positivity, medium, substack and marc and angel to name a few.

To be updated with Naveen's work, connect with him by following his social media accounts.

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