When you’ve been cooped up for so long, going back to the outside world and navigating your social circles could be challenging. Contact with people in the past year has been limited to family and maybe a few close friends, which probably has affected our communication skills. So how do you make new friends during the pandemic?
It’s a misconception that making new friends implies meeting new people because that’s not always the case. You could connect with people you’re already acquainted with and build meaningful relationships from there. An example is mutual friends or colleagues from work that you’ve barely interacted with this whole time.
Making friends through the internet is not uncommon, as many people have found their life partners and best friends online. There’s the option to join Facebook groups or Discord channels where you can socialize with like-minded individuals. You can also mingle with new people through gaming streams, virtual hangouts, or bond over your favorite K-Pop group.
Why look further when your new bestie could be someone living near you? Whether it’s your next-door neighbor or somebody who frequents a local spot, try saying hi and start a conversation to see where it takes you. Even just asking them how their week was could be a great ice breaker. Once you’re acquainted, you could send them over food or ask them to hang out sometime.
In conclusion, there’s no foolproof method to forecast if a new friendship will succeed. You can’t expect to instantly click with everyone you meet. Because just like any relationship, there’s going to be a getting-to-know-you stage where you both assess if you have chemistry and compatibility.
Connection coach Kat Vellos reminds us, “For a friendship to take root, it needs openness, flexibility, and a consistent habit of ongoing meaningful contact.”