HELLO! I STRUGGLE TO MAKE FRIENDS. AM I AN ALIEN?
Authored By Hadia Sabah
Humans are social animals. This is a sentence we grew up listening to in all sorts of conversations, and while it may be overused, it also holds true. Everyone craves a feeling of belonging. Swiping past Snapchat stories of people hanging out and having a chill time, you start to look through your own monotonous Snapchat memories and begin to wonder: ‘am I really an alien?... Why haven’t I found my crowd yet?... Where’s the Rachel to my Monica?’
Volume up; cue Camila Cabello’s song Real Friends, read some of the few tips mentioned here, to make friends for those who struggle.
BE OPEN TO THE IDEA OF SOCIALIZING
It’s time to explore. You should have your mind and heart on the same page and step out of your comfort zone to let people in. Make sure you are ready to break out of that bubble that holds you back from forming new connections with people. You constantly grow and find yourself in new settings surrounded by new people, so it is necessary to not let bitter past experiences caused by certain *cough* “snakes” hinder you from welcoming unique individuals into your life.
REMEMBER: FIRST IMPRESSIONS COUNT
Make sure you do not intimidate others. That prevents people from approaching you and striking up conversations. While many argue, judging a book by its covers gets you nowhere, you must admit it is the first impression be it looks, an action or something they say that makes you go, “oh wow, they’re cool, I want to sit next to them.” Take a look in the mirror and see what your resting face conveys. Do you look like a stern person or just a softie with an inviting eye smile? Is your tone of speaking friendly? Would you want to approach yourself and chat about some of the latest Pakistani dramas over samosas and chai?
ALLOW CONVERSATIONS TO CARRY ON
Initiating conversations is where it gets a little tricky. However, a little tip; you do not need to discuss a specific topic to break the ice. Keep in mind, you do not need to force friendships. It takes time to scan the room and click with certain people, and it’s not necessarily a “three-strike, you’re out” rule. Get to know one another while making sure the questions you ask aren’t too intrusive; you don’t want to pull a Joe Goldberg from the series “YOU”. Show genuine interest in whatever they have to say as well. Lend an ear or maybe a shoulder to cry on. Give and ask for advice. Find common interests that will account for endless fangirling or fanboying sessions. Matching interests give room to conversations enjoyable by both parties!
MORE OF YES, LESS OF NO
Sure, a Friday night in with your big tub of ice cream and a good old episode of the SUITS sounds like a plan, but that’s not how you maintain friendships. Staying out of the picture will only lead to dying social interactions, and when you consistently turn down a night of spontaneous movie trips or an evening of brunch, people will stop inviting you. Spending time outside of work or school with people will help you make memories and spend a fun time with each other.
With that settled, it’s now high time for you to seek out new besties to spill the tea with. Unwrap yourself from that anti-social cocoon to glow up into a social butterfly. May the odds be ever in your favor, and may you dodge all the serpents that ruin the experience of making friends for all of us.