So, I have this friend. She just so happens to be the best networker I’ve ever seen.
I mean, I doubt she sees it that way. She’s simply feeling a strong pull to make friends as an adult and build a community. But they are all the same!
I believe she could make a friend out of anyone. Now, whether that is difficult for her or not, she makes it look easy.
And she inspires me to do better, as friends should do. I’ve been taking notes from her ever since she came with cookies to welcome us to the neighborhood two years ago.
My friend is a mentor, in a way, as one of my personal goals is to make friends as an adult and have a group that we feel a part of.
Ideally, I can turn to these people in times of celebration and they will lift me in times of need. Because, guys, there are plenty of both in our lives no matter who you are. Why go through it alone?
And even if you ignore the feel-good aspects, community is how people succeed. We are so much more likely to support and go out of our way for those that we know and like. Success in life is often about who you know.
Additionally, when trying to be a better version of ourselves, it’s essential to look at what the best do. Many of the ideas below come straight from things that I have seen her do to build her tribe of people.
23 Ways to Make Friends As An Adult
1. UTILIZE THAT FIRE PIT
First, throw some chairs outside and get your fire pit going.
Invite people over, or just sit in the front of your home and be visible! Have a cooler of drinks for anyone that stops by!
2. HAVE A REGULAR WINE NIGHT OR WINE CLUB
Wine night with friends is one of the best things ever invented for moms. I can do it after bedtime, and if I have it at my home or somewhere close, it’s extremely convenient.
3. WALK WITH NEIGHBORS
My friend is setting up a “walk with neighbors” one night a week for June. She’s just putting up signs on the corners and a few flyers out in our neighborhood.
We will simply meet at a spot and take a walk. It’s free and we all get a little exercise too! Plus, it’s a great way to meet people you wouldn’t necessarily talk to!
4. PIZZA AT THE PARK
It’s pretty easy to make friends as an adult when you have food. So, grab something quick and easy, and send a quick text to someone to see if they want to meet at a park to enjoy it with you.
No cooking or cleaning involved, and they will probably be relieved they don’t have to cook either!
5. INVITE SOMEONE OVER FOR FOOD
This is our ongoing goal, that we logistically have a hard time with. 3 kids make this a bit more difficult.
BUT, it’s worth it, and I’m trying to adjust my thinking. If we make the same dinner I would have already made, then it’s no extra work. And, honestly, I’d rather people see my house messy, than never invite anyone over.
6. GARAGE SALES
When your neighbors are having garage sales, stop by for a chat!
It’s a super easy way to spend time with people that live around you!
7. ASK TO CARPOOL
I never would have thought of this, but by being part of a carpool I naturally see other moms on a more regular basis.
The same goes for walking! When we walk to school, I ALWAYS see someone there to talk to.
8. JOIN A GROUP, CLUB, OR ORGANIZATION
Are you struggling to meet new people? Join anything! There are church groups, school groups, running groups, knitting groups, you name it!
Facebook and Meetup are great places to find such groups!
9. DROP OFF A COFFEE TO SOMEONE
This is just a super easy way to get out and talk to someone. Every time I do it, I get to have some built-in girl time for a few minutes to help me get through the day!
10. HAVE A PARTY
Celebrate the change in season, and use it as an excuse to build community! If you have kids, throw out some kid things like bounce houses, water tables, or slip n slides.
This can be as easy or complicated as you want!
11. JOIN A BOOK CLUB
Do you know someone that loves reading? Read a book separately and talk about it! Choose any genre!
12. ANNUAL TRIPS
Annual trips are a fantastic way to nourish the relationships we have. I may not get to see my friends and family every day anymore, but I know that there are sacred times of the year.
We’re even planning some bigger future trips that will get us more out of our comfort zones and create awesome memories.
13. CINCO DE MAYO
This is a brilliant way to build your neighbor community!
Put a table up in your front yard with a crockpot of taco meat, fixings, and some margarita stuff. Invite your neighbors over and have a front yard Cinco De Mayo party!
It’s very easy, and it’s a fantastic way to get to know neighbors that you never talk to.
14. SHOW A MOVIE OUTSIDE
In the summertime, find a projector and show a movie! Put a sheet over your garage door, pop some popcorn and invite a few families over.
15. COFFEE, LUNCH, OR DINNER DATES
This is self-explanatory. Just make it a priority to see friends and family regularly.
Schedule in a weekly or monthly time if you can, so that it comes first in your calendar.
16. GO TO AN ANNUAL CONCERT
Are you a music lover?
Commit to see a concert every year and invite someone new to go with you! Or make it an annual tradition with the same person!
17. SPECIAL HOLIDAY TRADITIONS
We see people more around the holidays, which makes it a prime time to maintain and build your community! Here are just a few ideas!
I’ve done an ornament exchange with girlfriends for, gosh, 10 years. It makes my heart so so happy to see all of their ornaments on my tree at Christmas.
And we also make it a priority to do a couples date every Christmas with the same two couples. It’s our “adult” time!
Finally, Friendsgivings are also a popular way to get people together. This doesn’t even need to be traditional food!
Any special annual traditions for holidays will create unforgettable memories.
18. GO OUT ON A GROUP DATE
Or even hire a babysitter to watch kids in the basement while you do dinner and games upstairs!
19. SET UP A PLAYDATE
Having children already gives you something in common with other parents. During the summer or school breaks, it’s easy to meet someone at the park and get to know a parent.
No kids? Have a dog meetup instead!
20. DROP OFF A GOODIE
The first time my neighbor friend dropped off cookies, I was so surprised. Like, people do that?! And here’s the thing, I had just suffered a late miscarriage that led to a middle of the night 911 call and an emergency procedure.
I was a MESS, to say the least. That one simple act meant more to me that she could have possibly known.
You just never know what people are going through behind closed doors.
So, make it a welcome to the neighborhood, or just as a gesture to show you’re thinking about them.
By giving your time, you will meet an entirely new group of people that also have your same interests at heart.
Whether that’s politics, animals, healthcare, or the environment, you already have something to talk about!
This is a great way to find those amazing friends to make as an adult!
This can be a difficult class or an easy one. For a while, I did a restorative yoga class with a friend, and it was the best stress relief I could have hoped for at the time.
But if you’re looking to sweat it out, invite someone to an intense one and get fit together!
The accountability will make it easier to work out too!
23. TRY A PROGRESSIVE DINNER
Finally, set up a progressive dinner in your neighborhood. Have appetizers at one home, dinner at another, drinks and dessert at another.
What a fun way to mix things up and try something new!
And check out the free cheat sheet HERE to put on your fridge!
When You Meet Someone New
And finally, I KNOW that meeting new people is tough for most of us. So, here are three easy steps to make sure that you make friends as an adult with whomever you meet!
1. Make eye contact and smile. Go first, and make people feel comfortable.
2. Ask questions about them!!!! People feel as though they are connecting when they can talk about themselves. I have to remind myself of this often.
But, the second time I met my neighbor friend, I realized that she was EXCEPTIONALLY good at asking other people questions. No wonder she’s so likable!
3. Compliment them. Besides asking questions, complimenting them is another way to make someone feel good. Make them feel good, and you’ve got a new friend.
Something To Think About
It can be very intimidating to make friends as an adult.
What do you do that you think helps build friendships?