Whether you’re a freshman or just looking for a fresh start, the task of making new friends at college can sometimes be daunting. While it may seem like with so many people around you shouldn’t have trouble building relationships, it can be hard to know where or how to start. There is no doubt, though, that making friends will make all the difference in your college experience. Don’t just sit around and wait for someone to approach you. Follow these eight tips and before you know it, you will have the social life you’re looking for.
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #1:
Keep your eyes open. New friends are waiting to be made around every corner. Don’t think that the only place you can make friends is in your residence hall – you could meet someone in class, at the gym, in line for food, or maybe even while you’re washing your hands in the bathroom. Now this is not to say that you should run down every person you meet or tune out the teacher in class because you’re busy scanning the room for potential buddies… but if you see someone who strikes your fancy and the opportunity presents itself, strike up a conversation. What’s the worst that could happen? You get shot down by a stranger? That’s a small price to pay when the alternative may be making a new friend.
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #2:
Get involved. There is no better way to make new friends in college than to get involved in some way or another. That might mean joining a study group, an intramural sports team, a special interest club, or your residence hall council, but find something that interests you and check out a meeting or two. This way, you’re walking into a situation where you are surrounded by people with at least something in common, and you have a regular opportunity to see each other. Who knows? Maybe you could start a trend of going out for pizza after meetings or you could invite the people from the Star Wars club to a marathon in your dorm room over the weekend. (Check with your roommate first.)
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #3:
Speaking of roommates… If you have a roommate, don’t overlook that potential new friend. This could be someone who you grow to have a deep friendship with. However, you have to be careful. Spending 24/7 with someone can really take its toll. Sometimes it is best to have a relationship with your roommate that is friendly but not best-friendly. It’s important to strike a balance. Going to college, don’t put all your eggs in one basket and assume your roommate will be your best friend. Even if you feel like you’re soul mates, everyone needs to have a variety of people to hang out with. While it can be nice to have a built-in buddy waiting for you at home, it can also be stifling if you are never apart from one another.
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #4:
Leave your door open. If you are living on campus and you happen to be in your dorm room studying or watching TV, leave the door open. Other people are likely to wander by. They might see something about the way you decorated your room that sparks a conversation, or perhaps they’ll just be rounding up everyone who happens to be around for a game of flag football or an ice cream run. The biggest mistake people make when in the market for new friends in college is causing people to assume they are not available by shutting themselves in their rooms. Of course, if you really do need to study, by all means, close the door – but if you could spare an hour or two for some fun, leave it open and wait for opportunity to come knocking.
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #5:
Be a “Yes Man.” Have you ever seen the movie “Yes Man”? Jim Carrey’s character goes to a motivational speaker who teaches him that he should yes to whatever opportunity is presented to him. This brings him out of his shell and helps him to have experiences he never dreamed of. While your first priority in college is to get your homework done, you have to leave room for fun. Don’t be so stuck to your plans and schedule that there is no room for flexibility. By all means, make sure your priorities are straight and your morals stay intact. (I am dead serious about this.) But saying “yes” to an invitation to spend time with someone new, doing something new, going somewhere new, or just deviating from your original plan, can lead you to some of the most memorable experiences of your life.
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #6:
Invite other people. Always, always, always invite other people to come along. The lonely guy next door, the girl who happens to be sitting in the lounge, the twins sitting next to you in class, the cashier at the store – whoever it may be, always be looking for opportunities to expand your network of friends. I can’t recommend to you enough that you hang out with people who are open to meeting new people and who are hospitable and friendly enough that they will make anyone feel welcome. Some of my greatest experiences in life have come from saying yes to invitations to join random groups of people doing random things. Once I started accepting invitations, I started dishing them out. In my opinion, that’s the way to live your social life – all for one and one for all.
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #7:
Nurture your close friendships. From all of these social experiences, there are bound to emerge one or two close friends. These friendships have the potential to reach a deeper level of caring, intimacy, and understanding, but to do so, they need to be nurtured. Make sure to have some time one-on-one or in smaller groups that will allow for good conversation and the opportunity to get to know one another on a deeper level. Hanging out in big groups is a lot of fun and can result in a wide range of fun acquaintanceships, but if you come across people with whom you just “click” on a deeper level, you might have the potential for life-long friendships. College can be busy and these friendships can slip through the cracks if you don’t take the initiative to build a solid foundation.
How to Make New Friends In College Tip #8:
Lastly, just be yourself. Granted, when you’re starting out, it might need to be a slightly more reserved “you” if you usually talk so much that other people can’t get a word in edgewise. Or it might need to be a slightly less reserved “you” if you are normally so shy the idea of talking to a stranger makes you break out in hives. The most important thing is to take college for all it’s worth. You deserve to have the best college experience possible – and that stretches beyond the classroom to four (or more) years of late-night conversations, campus-wide games of hide-and-seek, road trips, dorm wars, Mario Kart competitions, and broomball championships. And you deserve to find that quirky group of friends that is just the right match for you to enjoy those things with. They’re out there – now go out and find them!