Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Thoughts On Making Friends In Your 20's

I've been talking about making this post for the longest time now, and after a few polls on Instagram I realised that I wasn't alone in feeling like it's so much harder to make friends when you're in your 20's and over. One of my New Year resolutions was to make more of a conscious effort to make friends, and although I am starting slowly, I am trying. Today, I wanted to share with you a few thoughts, feelings and ways I'm going to try to make friends this year: 

Start Afresh | I've got to admit, I took 0 friends from school and sixth form, as we either grew apart before the end or any lasting bit of friendship fizzled out when I moved away. I think it's taken me a while to start making new friends again due to bad experiences, and now I'm older I'd hope to think the 'secondary school' behaviour is left in the past. I'm giving myself a clean slate and I want to be less harsh on myself. If a friendship blossoms then of course I'll be delighted, but if nothing happens, then I don't want to take it as personally as I have been. 

A Few Thoughts | Through the use of my Instagram polls, I found out that although people would like more friends (92% said yes to wanting more) and found it hard making them when they're in their 20's, they don't often make a conscious effort to make them themselves, in fact only 43% said they'd make the effort which is pretty split in the middle, considering how many people said it's hard to make friends. As someone who works predominately at home rather than a formal setting, I don't tend to get the opportunity to make as many friends or have a joke about as one might when you're thrown together in work. Saying this, I think it's hard for anybody and it's certainly not about the quantity, but the quality. 

I think finding common ground definitely helps; whether that's blogging, hobbies or just general chit-chat with somebody you think has a similar sense of humour, or even that you've got a good feeling about. My anxiety definitely plays a part in how well I've been able to make friends; I worry about everything from wearing the wrong shoes to even discussing having anxious feelings. It's hard, but I want to try and get through as much of that as possible in 2018. 

The Fears | My main fears when making friends is rejection, feeling like they have too many 'cool' friends already and worrying they'll think I'm annoying (emphasis on the latter). With 90% of you agreeing with me, I can safely say I'm not the only one feeling this way. In fact, I was surprised to find out that so many people feel that way, as I assumed that I was the only one that had these worries and I actually feel comforted that the majority of people have similar feelings. 

What I'm Doing About It | For a while, I've clocked a few people who I think "yeah I'd be friends with you" and this year I want to do something about it. Although you're never going to click with everybody, I do want to make more of an effort. I think my problem is I start off strong, but soon worry that I'm annoying somebody by talking to them and I let it fizzle out. Although it's important to have a friendship where both parities give and take, I want to make that extra effort just in case the other person is just as shy and worried as I am. Message them first, text them to go out for a drink or even just check in with them a few times a week to ask them how they are.

What are your thoughts on making friends in your 20's? 
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