Making friends is tough as it is but it can be even more difficult when you’re an introvert. Introverts are often thought of as quiet and reserved but we need friends just like anyone else. For extroverted people, it can be easier to make friends because their energy comes from being around other people. They often have an easier time in social situations and are frequently described as more outgoing and the “life of the party.” Being around a lot of people for an extended period of time can be draining for introverts but it is still important to maintain friendships and other close relationships. Below is a list of ways to make friends when you’re an introvert.
- Become Closer With People You Already Know
For many introverts it can be overwhelming to try to make new friends. Instead, try to reach out to friends of friends or people that you’ve met in passing. If you have a mutual friend or something in common with them, you already have something in common with them which is a great way to start off.
- Join a Club or Group
If you’re in high school or college, it’s very likely that there are clubs or organizations for almost any hobby or interest. If you start out by going to an interest meeting, you won’t be the only person that’s new and you’ll be able to connect with others on that level. If you’re out of high school or college, there are endless Facebook groups for people with similar interests. From football fanatics to knitting groups, you will be sure to find people who share your same interests.
- Be Yourself
One of the most important things to remember when trying to make new friends as an introvert is to stay true to yourself. You want any potential friends to know you and like you for who you truly are. We as introverts can sometimes feel like we need to act more extroverted to be able to make lasting friendships. But there are plenty of other introverts that are also looking for new friends. Don’t be afraid to express how you feel about being at large parties or that you prefer to stay in on the weekends.
- Pay Attention to How You Feel
If you don’t feel that you’re matching with someone else’s energy, don’t feel like you need to force a connection. You’ll connect with and become friends with the people that you’re meant to. If you feel like a connection could develop, try to wait it out or find common ground but there’s no need to force it.
- Reach Out Online
Again, it can be overwhelming for introverted people to throw themselves into large gatherings with a lot of people that they don’t know. That’s where the internet and social media become your friend. You’re able to reach out to and connect with people who have similar interests as you and you can talk to them over messaging before meeting them in person. But be wary of getting too comfortable with chatting over social media or the phone and try to push yourself to meet new people in person as well.
Being an introvert has its advantages and disadvantages but making friends can be particularly difficult. Thankfully, there are still many ways to meet new people and make friends while still highly valuing your alone time.