Steps For Building and Maintaining Friendships

Building and maintaining good friendships can be quite difficult. Having friendships can prevent loneliness and can give you the chance to offer companionship to someone else, too. With a little research, I learned that friends can actually increase your happiness and reduce any stress you may have, can increase your feeling of belonging and purpose, can help you deal better with things like loss of work, or loss of a loved one, and can even encourage you to avoid unhealthy lifestyles like excessive drinking.

I’m sure you can remember when you were a kid how easy it was to make friends. You could simply just walk right up to someone else and join in on whatever they were doing. And as you got older, you probably realized that it’s not that simple anymore. At all. Maybe you and your friends grew apart for some reason, or maybe you just started at a new school or moved somewhere new and haven’t found a way to make friends yet. It can be frustrating, right? It takes a lot of effort, but I think if you meet the right people that don’t bring you down in any way, it’s completely worth it. And I have some ways on different ways to make friends and how to maintain those friendships.

Image by photostock FreeDigitalPhotos
Image by photostock FreeDigitalPhotos

#1 Community Events

This could be events in your town, or clubs to join in your school. I would make sure that before you join a club, it’s also something you enjoy. That way, making friends will be a whole lot easier because whoever you’re talking to will have the same interests as you, and you will get talking about something you both enjoy. If you join a club or go to an event you know nothing about, it might be a little harder to join conversations because you won’t know much about it!

#2 Go Outside

By this, I mean take a walk around your neighborhood or go outside on your doorstep, because it’s very possible that your neighbor might strike up a conversation with you. If you have any pets, take them with you, because who knows who might stop you and ask to pet your dog. Your pet could end up being a great conversation starter.

#3 Acquaintances

Go through your contacts in your phone, or your Facebook friends, because you could come across someone you’ve only talked to a couple times. Those people would be a great option to shoot a message to and ask them how they are. They’re not total strangers to you, so it might not be something completely out of your comfort zone, but they’re also people you sort of know,

so it might be a lot easier and more comfortable than you think to start a conversation with them and hang out with them.

#4 Be Positive

Smile! Smiling is a great way to make friends, believe it or not. Smiling and being friendly might make people be a lot more comfortable approaching you. If you don’t seem like a friendly person on the outside, people are less likely to start a conversation with you. Having a positive attitude will make some people think, “huh, they seem friendly, maybe I should go talk to them”. It might seem unrealistic, but it definitely happens!

#5 Be A Good Friend

This is more of a tip for maintaining friendships. If your friend has a problem, or are facing a difficult time in their life, it’s important to be there for them. That will tell them that you are always there for them and willing to help and be a shoulder to lean on. If you completely ignore them when they need you, it’s definitely not gonna make them think you are friend material, and vice versa. I think treating your friends like that will conclude in you receiving the same treatment. Being there for each other is one of the most important things in a friendship.

#6 Hang Out With Your Friends

Another important tip if you want to maintain a friendship is to hang out with them. If they invite you somewhere, and if you have the time, it would be a great idea to accept. Hanging out with your friends often tells them that you actually have time for them and that you actually want to try maintaining and building your friendship with them. The more time you spend together, it’s likely you’ll become even closer friends.

All these tips are great ways to make close friends, but it’s also important that you only keep the people who are worth your time in your life. If you meet someone who is rude all the time or is constantly bringing you down for things, then you don’t need those type of people in your life, anyway. Only stay friends with the people who like you for who you are, who don’t bring you down for the person you are or for the things you like, because, in the end, they’ll only end up bringing you down, too.

Also realize that you won’t like everyone you meet, and everyone you meet won’t like you. Don’t tear yourself down if a possible friendship with someone doesn’t work out, because there are plenty of other people who would be lucky to have you in their life, and plenty of other people who you would be lucky to have in your life. There will be some people who you don’t want to be friends with, and that’s okay. There will be people who don’t want to be friends with you, and while that might sting a bit, it’s also okay! Friends are important, so make sure you pick the right ones.

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