Here’s something people rarely tell you about when it comes to making friends: Once you’re out of school, making friends in adulthood gets harder. It’s easy when you’re in school—you befriend people in your classes, dorm, or who are in the same clubs or activities as you are. Then, you enter the working world, where if you are lucky, you’ll be able to make friends with some of your co-workers. But for the last few years, with people working remotely and interacting with their co-workers less, making new friends may have felt nearly impossible—especially if you started at a new company at any time during the pandemic.
Your location can also have an impact on your ability to meet like-minded people your own age. Living on Long Island, I’ve often had a hard time making new friends since most women my age are married and have kids. Often, the people I do meet live in New York City (where all the young, single people usually live), and it’s hard to make plans with them due to the hour-long commute each way. Fortunately, I returned to horseback riding last year, and that has helped me find my tribe a bit.
As someone who lives in the suburbs and also works from home sans co-workers, I know how isolating it can feel when you’re looking to interact with new people. Aside from my time at the barn, social media has been instrumental in helping me make connections. Last week, I went for drinks with someone who has been a long-time follower (hint: she’s local, and I’m often wearing the jewelry she designs for her company). It was a warm summer-like night, and we decided to grab drinks at The Farm Italy. It didn’t take us long to jump right into a conversation about life. Seeing as we are the same age and live and work in the same town, we instantly had a lot to talk about. It was nice to get someone else’s perspective who is my age, and before we knew it, we had been talking for close to two hours. The evening made me think that I needed to do more things like that. I left that night feeling energized and inspired, and eager to build out my friend group.
While social media gets a bad rap sometimes (and rightly so), it can be the best feeling when followers become friends. In this “post-pandemic” world that we live in, utilizing your social network and meeting people face-to-face can be a great way to broaden your circle of friends and get to meet people with diverse backgrounds.