An Introverted Extrovert's Guide to Making Friends

By Rene Santana on January 5, 2020

I don’t think there is a better feeling than when a long-time friend texts you out of the blue to ask if you could hang out. I know for introverts, this is a hard one. But the older we get, the harder it is to find good friends that will always remember your existence.

Image by simple_tunchi0 from Pixabay

Image by simple_tunchi0 from Pixabay

Among friend groups, I am easily verified as an extrovert, but outside of those groups? Wowee, it is a trainwreck trying to make new friends. Putting myself out there and being open is much easier said than done. Not everyone you meet might be your best friend, but if you have that magical aurora that makes people instantly fall in love with you, then kudos. For the rest of us, it’s a nightmare. But friends are a super uber important necessity.

So what do I do? Well, I kind of do a bit of everything.

1. Find your niche (Online or Off)
Do you love playing the violin? Maybe you’re a master at crocheting? Perhaps it’s time to bust out those kneepads and get into skateboarding again. Or maybe even build a new program on Github. Whatever your calling is, other people also have that same calling. Don’t worry, that doesn’t make it not special to you — it just means there are more people out there for you to enjoy it with.

2. Work or School
Some of my best friends were from college and high school. I even made a few buddies at work. The thing is, if you are willing to bond with others during a tribulation, they’ll most likely stay with you after all is said and done. Yes, work and school are often a bore and not fun at all. It doesn’t mean you can’t make some friends to help lighten the load of it all. It’s a great way to make long-time friends, so don’t forget to smile and say hi to a classmate or co-worker!

3. Local group
Anyone like dancing? Or even reading? Yes, as basic as it sounds, it is never a bad idea to join a local group. Learn salsa, read the new bestseller book, pick up some woodworking skills, or volunteer at the library. You can hear about from a …

4. Bulletin Board
While you may stumble upon a cry for help on bulletin board for someone asking to be friends, I was going to suggest something less drastic. Meet-ups. There may be parties or festivals going on in your town that would be an awesome reason to dress up a bit and say hi to new people. There’s always something going on in your town, so don’t worry if you miss out on an event.

5. Social Media*
Disclaimer: number one rule you should follow if you proceed with this option: be considerate. It’s okay if you don’t show your true colors on Twitter or Instagram. In truth, to gain followers and attention, you just need to be thoughtful of others. Of course, you need to post content on occasion, but even just joining a discussion on a regular basis can help you develop relationships online. Don’t expect it to happen overnight though, and DON’T expect them to always be available. Respect people’s time and treat them with kindness, and watch as you’ll soon be trying to meet up in real life. With all the power of social media, it’s certainly an amazing time to be alive.

You will always have time to work on your big projects, finish up papers, and study for exams. But after you graduate and head off into in the real world, you may just as easily transition into working long hours and maybe hitting the bars a few times. It helps a have a few friends to pull you out of the regular workday and go on a fun adventure. Having a friend that’ll push through your grumpiness and drag you to do something is much better than it sounds. We all can occasionally be grumps and are needing a kick to help us get back on track.

With my time at college, I shamelessly prioritized my friends, hanging out playing games, going for hikes, swing dancing, and going on mini road trips. I spent time freaking out about my work while heading back to school, but I still wouldn’t have traded the time I spent with friends for more study time. I eventually graduated and found a job in what I went to school for, so honestly, you can spare a few moments having a friend over.

But wait! What do you do now that you have some friends? Well, obviously, play some board games! Here’s a couple to start with: 20 Boardgames for Friendsgiving

*ALWAYS be careful on social media. Remember, people can be grumps and not realize how their content can affect others. Take EVERYTHING with a grain of salt.

CWU Graduate | Writer | Editor @WaldorfPress | Favors Tech, UX, and the Serial Comma.

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