If you’re struggling to make friends as you get older, try these 9 activities

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Making friends as you grow older can feel like an uphill battle.

Let’s face it – our social circles tend to shrink, and it’s not always easy to forge new relationships.

But fret not, I have some good news. There are plenty of activities that can help you connect with others and make new friends.

Here’s the thing – shared experiences and hobbies create a perfect setting for friendships to bloom. And I’ve got a list of such activities ready for you.

So, if you’re struggling to expand your social circle, read on.

Let me share some activities that can help you make friends as you age.

1) Join a hobby club

There’s an interesting phenomenon that often occurs as we get older – our hobbies and interests tend to take a backseat.

But here’s the thing. Our hobbies and interests can be a wonderful avenue to make new friends.

Consider joining a club or group that revolves around something you’re passionate about. It could be anything: a book club, a gardening group, a cooking class, or even a hiking club.

Here’s why it works. A shared interest gives you an immediate common ground and opens up plenty of conversation avenues.

And the best part? You’re not just making new friends; you’re also spending time doing something you love.

Remember, though, the aim here is to connect with people and forge relationships. So, while it’s great to immerse yourself in the activity, don’t forget to interact and engage with fellow members.

Why not give it a shot? Find a local club or group that piques your interest and dive in. You might be pleasantly surprised at the friendships that blossom.

2) Volunteer in your community

Now, this is something that has personally worked wonders for me.

A few years back, I found myself yearning for more social interactions. My work-from-home setup and the shrinking social circle left me feeling somewhat isolated.

So, I decided to volunteer at a local community center. It started with a few hours every weekend, and I ended up loving it.

Not only did it fill my heart with joy to give back to my community, but it also opened doors to meet some incredible people. From fellow volunteers to community members, I found myself surrounded by diverse, yet like-minded individuals.

And guess what? Some of these people are now my closest friends. Our bond goes beyond the volunteering hours. We catch up over coffee, celebrate special occasions together, and support each other through thick and thin.

So if you’re feeling socially disconnected, try volunteering. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can form meaningful relationships when you’re working together towards a common cause.

3) Enroll in a fitness class

Fitness classes are a great place to break a sweat and break the ice. From yoga and Pilates to spinning and Zumba, there are so many options to choose from.

But there’s more to fitness classes than just physical exercise. They’re also social hubs where you get to interact with others before, during, and after the workout.

The best part? Research suggests that engaging in physical activities alongside others can lead to stronger social bonds. This is because shared physical exertion and shared goals can enhance our sense of camaraderie and connection.

Sign up for a fitness class that suits your interest and fitness level. You’ll be doing your health a favor, and who knows, you might just find your new best friend while you’re at it.

4) Make use of social media

We often hear about the negative aspects of social media, but let’s not forget its ability to connect people.

Social media platforms are teeming with groups and communities centered around various interests. From travel enthusiasts and pet lovers to bookworms and home chefs, there’s a group out there for everyone.

Joining such a group can open up opportunities for interaction with people who share your interests. Start by participating in discussions, sharing your thoughts, or simply reacting to posts.

Over time, these online interactions can lead to offline friendships.

However, remember to be authentic and respectful in your interactions. After all, genuine friendships are built on trust and mutual respect.

5) Attend local events and gatherings

Ever notice how your city or town often hosts various events and gatherings? These could range from farmer’s markets and music festivals to charity runs and cultural fairs.

These events are not just fun, they’re also a great place to meet new people. Attending these local happenings puts you in the midst of a diverse crowd, offering ample opportunities to strike up conversations and make connections.

Remember, the key here is to be open and approachable. Don’t hesitate to initiate conversations or join in on ongoing ones. Ask questions, share your thoughts, and show interest in others.

Next time there’s a local event happening, don’t think twice. Step out, enjoy the event, and seize the opportunity to make new friends.

6) Reach out to old friends

As life gets busier, it’s easy to lose touch with old friends. But do you know what’s beautiful about old friendships? They can often be rekindled with just a simple hello.

Think about those friends you haven’t spoken to in years. The ones you shared laughter and tears with, the ones who knew you when you were figuring life out.

Reaching out to them can feel like coming home. You might find that, despite the years and distance, the bond remains strong. And even if you’ve both changed over time, there’s a chance to rediscover each other and build a renewed friendship.

So go ahead, pick up your phone or write that email. Reminisce about old times, catch up on each other’s lives. You’ll be surprised how quickly old jokes resurface, and how easily the conversation flows.

Remember, it’s never too late to reconnect with old friends and revive those cherished bonds.

7) Take a language class

Once, I found myself fascinated with Italian culture – the art, the history, and especially the language. On a whim, I decided to enroll in an Italian language class.

At first, it was just about learning a new language. But soon, it became so much more. The class was full of people from different walks of life, all united by a common interest in Italian.

Over shared struggles with conjugations and pronunciations, friendships began to form. We started studying together, helping each other out, and even meeting outside of class for a cup of coffee or an Italian movie night.

Learning a new language opened up not just a new way to communicate, but also a whole new social circle.

So if there’s a language you’ve always wanted to learn, why not sign up for a class? It could be the start of not just a new skill, but also new friendships.

8) Explore coworking spaces

With the rise of remote work and freelancing, coworking spaces have become increasingly popular. These aren’t just shared offices – they’re also vibrant communities.

Coworking spaces often host various events, workshops, and social hours that provide plenty of opportunities to network and meet like-minded individuals.

And even on a regular day, the communal environment can foster conversations and connections. Whether it’s discussing a project over lunch or brainstorming ideas over a cup of coffee, you never know when a casual conversation might turn into a lasting friendship.

If you’re working from home or freelance, consider trying out a coworking space. It might just be the social boost you need.

9) Be open and patient

You can join clubs, attend events, and participate in various activities, but the most crucial factor is your openness and patience.

Be open to meeting different kinds of people. Be open to stepping out of your comfort zone. Be open to new experiences.

And be patient. Friendships aren’t built overnight. They take time to blossom and thrive.

So keep your heart open and give it time. Before you know it, you’ll have formed connections that add joy, support, and richness to your life.

In the end: It’s all about connection

The essence of our existence as human beings is often intertwined with the connections we form with others.

As we get older, making new friends may seem daunting, but it’s a journey worth embarking on. The activities we’ve discussed here today are not just about meeting new people. 

They’re about opening yourself up to new experiences, stepping out of your comfort zone, and finding shared stories and passions that bind us together.

So whether you’re joining a hobby club, volunteering, attending local events or reaching out to old friends, remember that each interaction is a step towards building those meaningful connections.

Friendship is a beautiful aspect of life that adds a richness of experience and a sense of belonging. It’s never too late to make new friends, and every effort you make in that direction is a celebration of human connection.

Eliza Hartley

Eliza Hartley, a London-based writer, is passionate about helping others discover the power of self-improvement. Her approach combines everyday wisdom with practical strategies, shaped by her own journey overcoming personal challenges. Eliza's articles resonate with those seeking to navigate life's complexities with grace and strength.

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