One of my friends wrote a lovely post recently about moving to a new town where she doesn't know anyone. Here are her tips on how to meet and make new friends!
I've recently moved to a new area of the UK, far away from my existing network of friends. I realised that I'd never had to do this before, as I'd always been within reach of school or university friends or meeting people through my work. It was quite a scary prospect but I knew I was going to have to make an effort to find new friends and build new networks to help feel at home quickly. I asked my good old friends on Facebook how they'd suggest I should make new friends and here are their ideas and how I got on. Join a club or take up a new hobby...running, cycling, knitting and other crafts, singing.
Join a club
This is a top tip! I've joined a choir and running club and I'm already making connections and the basis of some new friendships. You are meeting people where you already have something in common and to talk about. Check the internet and local noticeboards to find clubs.
Take up a new hobby
I'm scratching my head over which hobby to take up, but it is true if you put yourself out of your comfort zone and try something new you also feel more open to making new friendships. It's also taking you into new social circles and meeting people might otherwise not have bumped into. Give it a go, if you don't like it you can always drop out.
Introductions from other friends
I didn't think I knew anyone here, but my friends have put me in touch with some of their friends and relatives. Ask your existing friends if they know anyone near you and be brave and get in touch. Remember they are friends of your friends so there's a good chance you'll like them and have something in common.
I've been a big fan of volunteering, when I've had the time outside of work. I've got in touch with a couple of local volunteering organisations and I'm finding this a great way to meet new people. You all care about the same cause and I've always found doing something whilst meeting people takes the pressure off conversation. Plus you get the satisfaction of putting something back. Most local areas have a volunteer bureau that will match you up with organisations needing volunteers or try do-it.org.uk.
Hang out in a social place
Pick a good local pub and spend a lot of time in there. This came from a man! Needless to say I didn't try this. But I guess hanging out in a coffee shop or similar place might work, it is the way many people make lifelong friends at the school gates.
Searching for friends online
I googled friendship sites online and found a site just for women which had a good following in my local area. It promised to put me in touch with like-minded women for friendship. I registered and immediately found more than 10 women in my area with similar interests and a good looking programme of events I could join. I took the plunge and contacted someone with similar outdoors interests to me. We agreed to meet up for a walk and it was one of the best days I've had since moving. A great morning in the fresh air and some good conversation ranging over lots of topics and we both wanted to do it again!
Hope these tips and ways to meet your friends help you too!