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Advice Friendship

10 Creative Ways to Make Friends After College

It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3… through 10.

Figuring out how to make friends after college can feel like an impossible feat. Without classes, clubs, and frat parties as your social stomping grounds, making friends may feel daunting.

As some of your friends move away, life gets busier, and social opportunities become less frequent, it’s natural to feel discouraged.

But despite that it may appear on Instagram as if everyone has their own friend group squared away, we promise that you are not alone in your search for new pals, and making them doesn’t have to be so scary.

Is Making Friends After College Hard?

Let’s start with the good news: in all likelihood, you haven’t even met some of the people who will become your best friends. Are you stoked yet?

After college, you might feel like nobody else is shopping around for a new addition to their friend group and you’re destined to be a loner forever.

The reality is, there’s a million reasons why one might be seeking new pals post college. People move, get busy, grow apart and change. Which means more people are looking for friends than you may think.

Most full-fledged adults (no, we do not consider ourselves to be part of that category) are best friends with people they met long after college. Friends are collected at different jobs, while pursuing hobbies, and through family and friends.
Making friends after college

 

How to Make Friends After College

1. Tap into mutual friends.

One of the easiest ways to make friends after college is through mutual friends. Whether you’ve moved to a new city or stayed in a familiar one, use the power of mutual friends to open up a whole new network.

You don’t have to live in the same city as your friends for them to provide an introduction. Your BFF’s cousin lives in Boston? Give her our digits!

And the best part about mutual friends? There’s less vetting required. If your friend likes this person, odds are you will too.
How to make friends after college - women chatting at a party

 

2. Make friends at work.

Depending on your employer, making friends at work can be one of the quickest and easiest ways to expand your social circle. You’re likely to find like-minded people with similar career interests. Maybe even similar personalities – some companies have a “type.”

Plus, many workplaces provide built-in opportunities to bond. You can always count on convos around the water cooler, team lunches, happy hours, and company events for friend-making opportunities.
How to make friends after college - two coworkers together

 

3. Start a side hustle.

Not finding eligible friends at your day job? Consider getting a side hustle.

There are plenty of side hustles conducive to socializing. Think restaurants, bars, coffee shops, workout studios, and retailers. Sometimes these are even better options for socializing since you don’t have stuffy corporate policies hanging over your head.

Go get your friends and your bag.
How to make friends after college - baristas smiling

 

4. Download a friendship app.

It’s 2023. There are a plethora of apps to make friends, including Bumble BFF and Yubo. They work just like dating apps – you swipe through profiles and make plans with anyone you’d like to hang out with.

The best part about using the apps is that everyone you meet is confirmed to be in the market for friends. Goodbye anxiety, hello Galentine’s Day plans!
How to make friends after college - women drinking coffee

 

5. Join groups for your hobbies.

Your hobbies are a surefire ticket to new friends. Whether you’re into biking, singing, cooking, pottery, or boutique fitness classes, there’s a group for it.

Research local groups on Google, or try using a website like Meetup. Not only will conversations feel effortless around your mutual interest, but you’ll also gain a new squad to do your hobbies with.
How to make friends after college - group of people singing together

 

6. Move into a social apartment building or community.

Neighbors can make wonderful friends. Especially since you have to walk all of 100 feet to see them.

Find an apartment building or community in your area that hosts social events for its tenants. You might have to pay a little more to live in a place like this, but it will pay off in social currency in the long run. Oh, plus all the free pizza.
How to make friends after college - smiling woman at social event

 

7. Join networking groups or attend networking events.

Technically, networking events are all about career. But that doesn’t mean you can’t turn that cool marketing gal you met by the open bar into a friend.

These events typically have two key elements to take the stress out of speaking with strangers: common ground and alcohol. So grab a cocktail and scope out the room to see what potential friends lie in the crowd.
How to make friends after college - women networking

 

8. Use social media.

You probably deleted Facebook years ago, but you may want to consider logging back in. Many cities have Facebook groups you can use to make friends in your area, like Betches of Boston.

Posting on TikTok or Instagram can lead to DMs from other locals. You may even realize a loose acquaintance lives nearby after connecting on social media. Use this as an opportunity to revive and maintain that friendship.
How to make friends after college - two women looking at phone

 

9. Volunteer.

Volunteering is a great way to spend your time in general. And chances are, you’ll meet some pretty good people while doing it.

Sign up to volunteer for a cause you care about, and have fun chatting with other volunteers over the clothing drive. Post 5K-for-a-cause coffee sounds great, thanks!
How to make friends after college - two women volunteering

 

10. Find social roommates.

Who better to start a friendship with than the people with whom you share a roof? Check out local Facebook groups or go through friends to find a living situation with roommates that seem cool.

This isn’t always fail-proof. It’s hard to truly know if you’ll click with someone until you live together. But the silver lining is that you’ll end up with a wider social network including your roommate’s friends, and plenty more opportunity to get out there.
How to make friends after college - roommates smiling

By Jess Lohr

Jess is the co-founder of Adultescence, a podcast, blog and social media brand for twenty-somethings making the transition from life in college to adulthood. She writes about dating, friendship, money, and career. She also specializes in consumer insights, and is passionate about helping brands infuse the voice of their customers into their marketing, product, and CX strategies.

In her free time, you can find Jess spinning at The Handle Bar, obsessively consuming personal finance content, and playing with her adorable (but chaotic) puppy, Luca. You can follow her on Instagram @jesslohr or on LinkedIn.

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