How to keep friendships

8 Ways to Make (And Keep) Friends as an Adult

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The importance of friendships in adulthood

How to make friends as an adult

6 activities to meet potential friends as an adult

Making friends as a parent

6 ways to maintain friendships as an adult

As an adult, I’ve lived in five different states. 

Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, California, and now, I live in Colorado. Each experience has brought its own set of challenges. Some moves were prompted by school and education. Other moves were prompted by job and career opportunities. But all the moves came with one common denominator: it’s hard to make friends as an adult. 

The research backs this up: making friends as an adult is harder than it seems. In fact, the May 2021 American Perspectives Survey had interesting findings on adult friendships. Many Americans don’t have a large number of close friends. In fact, 49% report having three or fewer close friends.  

When it comes to adult friendships, most Americans report having situational friendships. For example, people make temporary friends in the workplace, at school, in the gym, or in some other shared community. Nearly 70% report having a friend that they only see in certain places or at certain times. 

So, why are adult friendships so complicated? Well, for starters, we’re still weathering a global pandemic. COVID-19 catapulted many adults into social isolation, an understandable barrier to making friends that also created an added layer of awkwardness to our interactions.

People are also getting married later, working longer hours, and traveling more for work. People are more geographically mobile than before, like my husband and me. 

We’ve now lived in Colorado for nearly three years. We bought our first house, are putting down roots, and hope to stay for good. And in these last three years, we’ve been faced with this challenge: how do you make friends as an adult? 

I’ve learned a lot about making friends as an adult from my own personal journey. In this post, you’ll learn about the importance of friendships in adulthood. You’ll also walk away with tangible actions you can take to help make friends as an adult. 

The importance of friendships in adulthood

Before we get into how to make friends as an adult, let’s talk about why. Let’s talk about the importance of friendships in adulthood — and why friendships in adulthood can be good for your health. 

  • Adult friendships create meaningful social connections. Combatting loneliness and social isolation comes with creating connections. More than ever since COVID-19, we’ve seen first-hand the impacts of loneliness and social isolation on people. Fostering meaningful connections through adult friendships can help overcome the negative impacts. And from there, the positive ripple effect only grows. 
  • Adult friendships can help you live longer. Research shows that having friends can actually help add years to your life. One study found that adults with strong social networks were significantly more likely to live longer. 
  • Adult friendships are good for your heart (literally). Research has also shown that there’s a connection between social isolation and cardiovascular issues. Friendships in adulthood can actually help protect your heart. 
  • Adult friendships help relieve stress. One key reason why adult friendships are good for your heart is due to stress. With a strong social network, you’re better equipped to cope with stress. 
  • Adult friendships can help keep you mentally fit. A strong mental fitness practice benefits from a community of others engaged in similar practices. To cultivate a strong mental fitness, it’s important to lean on social connections and friendships. By doing so, you’ll increase your resilience, productivity, and overall mental well-being. 

“When I think about friendships, I reflect on our partnership: the joys and the sorrows we share, how we inspire one another, where we challenge each other to think outside our comfort zones, and sometimes to just be. True friends see my blind spots and can recognize a shift without me having to say a word. Keeping these bonds alive goes both ways – and the value we bring to each other enriches our lives every single day.”

 Lois Melkonian, BetterUp Fellow Coach 

How to make friends as an adult

It may not be as easy to make friends as an adult as you would think. But with the right support, resources, and guidance, you can start to create lasting friendships that’ll help you thrive. 

8 ways to make friends as an adult

  1. Get in a growth mindset 
  2. Commit to making an effort 
  3. Get curious and be willing to try new things 
  4. Leverage your current social network for introductions
  5. Tap into your community  
  6. Maintain a positive outlook 
  7. Be vulnerable 
  8. Consider coaching to overcome internal barriers  


Get in a growth mindset 

Let’s face it: making new friends is about growth. I grew up in a small town where I’ve known my best friends since we were four years old. So, when it came time to go away to college and make new friends, it was a challenge for me. In the beginning, I admit to having a fixed mindset. I used to think, “I have great old friends at home. Do I need to make new ones?” 

I’m glad I’ve evolved from the old 18-year-old me. In order to make new friends, you need to get yourself in a growth mindset. Be willing to look at new friendships as new growth for who you are as a person. It’s important to realize that new friends can also expand your perspectives, help you grow as a person, and challenge you. 

2. Commit to making an effort 

Making friends doesn’t come with a snap of your fingers. As easy as that would make things on us as humans, making friends requires intention. It also requires you to push yourself outside of your comfort zone. 

When I first moved to Colorado, I kept running into a neighbor who seemed to share similar interests. We often kept our conversations pretty surface level at the mailbox or while walking our dogs. But through our brief interactions, I learned she liked to hike, go running, do yoga, and spend time with friends. 

I decided to invite her to a free yoga event at a local brewery. It was a little uncomfortable and pushed me outside of my own comfort zone. But I had a feeling that we’d get along well. Today, she’s one of my best friends in Colorado. Think of ways you can commit to making an effort to make a new friend. 

3. Get curious and be willing to try new things 

Meeting new friends as an adult often comes with trying new things. And much like making an effort, trying new things can feel intimidating. 

I’ve always been a runner. But my form of running usually meant sticking to the pavement. I’d register for road races but never really ventured far from my comfort zone of what I knew. In fact, if you look at my Strava history, you’ll see that I generally stick to the same neighborhood route.  

But when I started to hang out with one of my new friends in Colorado, I learned she was a big trail runner. She spent most of her time running in the mountains instead of the road. So when she asked if I would want to go for a trail run, I was hesitant. Could I keep up? Would I hold her back? Is this something that I’d even like? 

Even though it was scary, I gave it a go. Now, most weekends, you’ll find me trail running with this friend. She opened me up to a new part of running that I’d never tried before — and it’s an activity that I now get to do with one of my close friends. 

4. Leverage your current social network for introductions 

When I first moved to San Francisco, I knew exactly one person outside of my colleagues at work. I didn’t have a single friend who lived in the Bay Area. But here’s the thing: my college friends knew people. 

My friends from college started to introduce me to people they knew who also were San Francisco transplants. And soon, we had a group of friends who were all connected by friends of friends. 

Look to your current social network to see where you might be able to connect with people. Chances are, there’s a friend of a friend who is also in your exact same situation. 

5. Tap into your community 

Don’t underestimate the power of community. Your community has avenues and resources to help cultivate strong adult friendships. 

For example, you might attend an event at a local coffee shop or brewery. Or you might try signing up for a gym or some other workout class. You could also volunteer, get involved with a local church, or join a social club. 

Research your own community to see how you can tap into it. Chances are, there’s something that you’d find interesting — and it could help you create strong friendships. 

6. Maintain a positive outlook 

Making friends as an adult is hard. It takes work. It’s an investment. And sometimes, you might feel a little defeated. You might not want to continue to make an effort, especially if you’re feeling overloaded in other areas of your life. 

As best as you can, try to maintain a positive outlook. A little shift in perspective can help remind you of what’s important to you. 

7. Be vulnerable 

Think about your best friend. Most people report having one best friend, even if they’re halfway across the world and you only talk to them twice a year. 

What about that friendship makes it so special? 

For me, it’s that my best friend knows the struggles and challenges that I’ve faced. My best friend has been there when I’ve been at my lowest and my highest points. My best friend knows about my passions, my dreams, and my goals. 

You don’t have to dive head-first into a new friendship with this level of vulnerability. But as you continue to foster relationships, some level of vulnerability helps strengthen your relationships. 

8. Consider coaching  

We all need support. And creating a support network that helps you reach your full potential is critically important to living a fulfilling life. 

A coach can help you understand the fears or self-esteem issues that might make you resistant to reaching out to others. We all carry an inner critic and self-doubts, past experiences, and anxieties about the future. That’s normal, but if you aren’t self-aware, they might be holding you back from building satisfying adult relationships. 

A coach can also help you reach your personal development goals. Plus, two years of semi-isolation has made us all a little weird and socially uncomfortable. With guidance from a coach, you can work on setting achievable goals for making new friends and building the skills you need to make friends as an adult. 

6 activities to meet potential friends as an adult

We’ve given you some high-level tips to help you make friends as an adult. Now, let’s talk about some activities that may help, too. 

1. Join a gym 

One way to meet people is by joining a gym. Many gyms (or other types of workout studios) offer group classes. For example, if you really enjoy yoga, you might consider joining a yoga studio to help meet people who also share your interests. 

2. Sign up for a workshop or class 

When I moved to Denver, I started taking writing workshop classes. Through these workshops, I’ve been able to make good friends who all share the same common interests in writing.

Think of ways you can meet a group of people in some sort of workshop or class. Platforms like Airbnb, Groupon, MeetUp, and more host things like art classes, workshops, and more. 

3. Join a MeetUp, Bumble BFF, or another tech platform 

Hear me out before your social anxiety kicks in. It can be scary to lean on technology to help make friends with total strangers. But platforms like MeetUp and Bumble BFF are literally built to help create a circle of friends. Give it a try. It might also help you get over a fear of rejection, too. 

4. Volunteer with a local nonprofit 

Volunteering with a local nonprofit is a great way to meet people. For example, I’ve volunteered at our local humane society and found other people who really enjoy helping animals. 

And science tells us volunteering can also be good for your mental health. Think of ways you can create new relationships by doing good.

5. Find a church or other spiritual service 

Lots of people turn to faith or religion to help find a sense of community. While this is very dependent on your personal belief systems, it’s a good option to consider. Consider ways you can create meaningful friendships through finding a spiritual community. 

6. Join a book club 

There’s nothing like a good book club. Seek out local book clubs through your library or other local bookstores. You can find that these get-togethers can help you find your footing in a social circle. 

Making friends as a parent

I grew up in a very close-knit community. My best friends from high school and grade school have long been a part of my social life. But beyond our own friendships, our parents are also great friends.  

The New York Times released a great guide on making friends as a parent. Here are four tips to keep in mind. 

  • Try activities with your kid. This could any sort of activity, like story time at your local library or baby yoga. You could also volunteer at your kid’s school or even coach your kid’s sports teams. 
  • Find like-minded parents in the places where you already go. Think about the places you already frequent, like your favorite cafe or neighborhood park. Take the plunge and try talking to other parents at the places where you go. My mom always recounts when she met her now-best friend. She was pushing me in a swing at the playground while a mom next to her was doing the same with her kid. 
  • Introduce yourself to other parents. This goes back to getting out of your comfort zone. Be proactive about initiating conversation. A conversation doesn’t necessarily mean anything other than getting to know someone better. Put yourself out there without any expectation and see what happens. 
  • Look to social media for help making friends as a parent. A lot of parents lean on social media for help finding friends. For example, Facebook, Reddit, Instagram, and more generally have local groups for parents in the neighborhood. My sister-in-law founded her own neighborhood Facebook group where she regularly connects with other parents in the area. 

6 ways to maintain friendships as an adult

Making friends as an adult is one thing. But maintaining friendships as an adult is another. Here are six tips to help nurture your adult friendships. 

  • Make the time (even if you’re “too busy”) 
  • Regularly commit to something on the calendar 
  • Be present 
  • Communicate 
  • Show up for your friends (especially when it matters most) 
  • Accept that friendships evolve and change 

Consider how BetterUp can help you nurture and maintain relationships and friendships in your life. From navigating change to investing in what matters most, a coach can help serve as your guide. Get started today.

How To Keep And Maintain Friendships

There’s a clear difference between knowing how to make friends and knowing how to keep and maintain friendships for a long time.

If you have trouble keeping friends around, or if you’re tired of losing many friends over the years, then there are a few lessons I learned and want to share with you here.

Things come and go in our lives. While that is something we can and should accept sometimes, it doesn’t always have to be that way, especially with the best friendships we’ve built.

In the essence of that, today you will learn how to keep and maintain friendships.

Which Friends To Keep

It’s useful that you should put aside the myth that you should keep in touch with 100% of the people you meet. That’s unrealistic and you shouldn’t make that your socializing goal. You can’t keep up with thousands of people.

The question you should be asking yourself is: “What kind of friends do I want to keep?”

The answer to that question should fall in line with what you value most — the friends with whom you get along best, those you feel close connections to, those who make you feel that you matter, the people who make you feel understood, those who will be there when you need them, and those you can trust with your most intimate secrets.

These are the qualities of a good friend. If you happen to meet and befriend people like these, you shouldn’t lose them. These are the kinds of friendships you should keep and maintain.

You also generally want to keep friends who have similar interests and general opinions on life as you do. The people you share common interests with are likely to be your closest friends in the future. If not, they can become colleagues you’ll share ideas with. Whatever the case, cherish those you meet who you have a lot in common with.

What Makes A Friendship Break Up

There are a lot of factors that can cause you to lose friends. Sometimes, you just can’t do anything about it. Circumstances like moving, new family obligations (think marriage/kids), or maybe even work-related issues that force your friends to socialize less are scenarios that can happen to anyone.

Another reason why you might break up with a friend is unresolved conflicts. You or your friend can’t see eye to eye on a matter. One of you did something and refuses to apologize or maybe you just disagree on whose fault it is. Sometimes, it’s plain jealousy between friends.

Another reason why you might lose friends is that you start to have less and less in common. As you both grow individually, you also gain more knowledge and skill. The knowledge and skills you gain may not always coincide with those of others. You both feel less and less of a drive to hang out together because of this.

Other times, you or your friend are too clingy or too distant. There is sometimes a difference between how much “space” you need in the friendship and how much the other person wants. If it’s too different, it can be tough to maintain the friendship. One friend might want to share a lot of activities and maybe share all their secrets, while the other one wants to be less involved.

What You Can Do To Keep Friends

All that being said, there are clear things you can do to keep your friends instead of losing them. These are the conditions that have to be met for the friendship to be maintained. Once these conditions are met, they have to stay that way.

Yes, friendships need to be maintained in order for it to stay alive. It’s often a FRAGILE relationship. Friendship, being a loose relationship (not like romance or business) needs more conscious nurturing than we assume.

Be that as it may, you should treat friendship like you would any form of relationship. If you don’t want it to fail, you need to treat it well. If you want to keep and maintain the friendships you have now, take note of these following tips.

1. Keep Having Interactions That Sustain The Friendship

Keep taking interest in what they do. Share your own interests with them as well. If they pick up a new interest or hobby, get excited and be happy for them. Aside from that, encourage them to try other things out. Keep having fun with them. Do fun things together. Keep that environment of leisure alive. You and your friends should take a break from day-to-day life every once in a while.

Keep talking and sharing your stories about work, family, relationships, and day to day life. It sounds simple, but that’s partly what friendship is about: sharing life. Talking about your experiences in detail. Getting to know each other deeper through stories. The more you know about each other, the stronger your bond will be.

One other thing you can do with your friends is to find a new hobby you will enjoy doing together. If there’s anything you and your friends haven’t done and have been meaning to do so, do them now! Even if it’s just you who have been dying to do something new, bring them along with you. Doing new things together is a good way of maintaining a friendship.

Interact with your friends in a way that’s meaningful and fruitful and you’ll be able to keep and maintain your friendship better.

2. Keep The Interactions Frequent

This factor is 80% of the game when it comes to maintaining friendships: staying in touch.

To keep a friend or a group of friends for a long time, you need to see or talk to them at an acceptable frequency. If they’re in the city, try and meet them every once in a while, especially if you want to keep them as close friends. Casual friends can be met less frequently. For your inner circle, the people you go out with the most, I recommend once a week; or twice a month if you can’t do it every week.

Staying in touch is 80% of the game.

For long-distance friendships and casual acquaintances, I recommend you touch base at least twice a year. Take the opportunity to touch base on their birthday or other important events. Call if you can. Don’t just leave a message on their Facebook profile.

Some friendships can survive even if you don’t see/hear from the person that often. It’s the case if you spent a great time together and feel that you bond very well. Even in that case, it’s still nice to touch base once in a while.

Take half an hour to an hour every week to do all your “staying in touch” with friends. Make it a habit, it’s easier that way. In just a few weeks in of doing this, you’ll realize the importance of your friends and how they make your life more fun.

3. Don’t Push Away Your Friends For No Reason

A casual friendship can be turned into a close friendship. This, however, requires liking each other more, sharing more personal information, opening up more, being more intimate, and supporting each other emotionally.

If you have a legitimate reason NOT TO do that with a friend (you don’t have time, you already have enough close friends, you don’t entirely trust them, etc) then fine, you don’t have to let the friendship “escalate.”

Don’t stop a friendship from “escalating” unless you have a reason to do it.

If you have no reason to keep the friendship casual, then don’t prevent it from happening. If a friend gets more involved in the relationship, and you feel like you want to do that as well, learn not to shy away from it. Go step by step. You develop the trust with that person; again, step by step.

Once they invite you to their home, try and replicate. If they introduce you to their families, try and do the same. Once they share information that is dear to them, try and replicate as well.

If you don’t replicate, the other friend can assume that you’re not that interested in a close friendship and might stop investing themselves with you. There is nothing wrong about opting for a casual friendship — but at least do it consciously; don’t push friends away for no reason. As a matter of fact, go out of your way to strengthen your relationship with them.

4. Deal With Friendship Conflicts, It’s Worth The Temporary Pain

Managing conflicts in friendship is a vital skill because it’s the best of friendships that are likely to hit a bump in the road. If you don’t resolve the conflict, you might lose a very dear friend.

Managing conflicts in friendship is a vital skill because it’s the best of friendships that are likely to hit a bump in the road.

Whether it’s between you and someone else, or between two of your friends, do your best to resolve conflicts. Make sure you do it without any judgment. The key to that is to take each person’s perspective. That’s very important. Each person needs to share how they see the conflict, from their own place, and you, as someone who needs to resolve it, should listen to every side.

Once everyone shares their perspective, each one can at least see some validity in their friends’. You want to “get” why the other person did what they did.

After that, you want each person to see that the other person didn’t intentionally hurt them. You want them to see how the friendship is more important than that one incident. That’s how they see the bigger picture, apologize to each other and move on.

Another thing you need to understand is that conflicts are bound to happen. If it happens in a friendship, in yours, don’t get discouraged right away. Resolve it instead of letting it go immediately.

5. Remember, Your Friend Isn’t A Stone; They’ll Change

Part of being a friend is accepting the other as they are. So who are they? They’re human beings with a dynamic personality. They can change their opinions, change their habits, or have their moods change.

A big problem in friendship is that people expect the other person to be predictable. Experience will show you that the most interesting of your friends are those who seek out new interests. They like to challenge their existing opinions and assumptions.

And while they challenge their old ways of thinking — that might not be easy for you to hear.

The best thing for you to do is to embrace it. Let them have their adventures in activities or in thinking. That’s what friends are for, allow them the space to share that without judgment. Better yet, join them! Be part of their adventure. You might learn a thing or two about yourself in the process.

Change is inevitable and it happens to people too. It happens especially to people. Whenever it happens to a friend, embrace the change. The best changes happen to the most interesting people. So if your friend changes in a certain way, be happy for them. Just be sure that it is change for the better and not the other way around.

6. Be More Open To Your Friends

This may take time, but being more open towards your friends is something you should strive for. If you can’t be open to your friends, you’ll always keep them second-guessing about you. This leads to frustration and doubt. Those are two elements you don’t want in your friendships if you want them to last.

There are two ways you can be more open to your friends. One is to allow yourself to be a little vulnerable. This doesn’t mean you should always be like an open book, but your friends should be able to see you as a person, both good and not-so-good aspects.

A true friend will admire you for your strengths and understand you for your flaws. You shouldn’t hesitate to expose both to the friends you value.

Another way you can be open to your friends is to always speak your mind. If you have opinions on any matter, even if it’s about them, especially if it’s about them, let them know. Don’t let those thoughts bottled up inside you. Your friends will appreciate your more if you’re able to speak up your mind.

If you see your friend doing something right, let them know in appreciation. If they’re doing something wrong, be honest. You’re being a good friend this way and it’s one of the best ways you can keep and maintain your friendships.

7. Go Easy On Your Criticisms

The previous point talked about being open. Here you’ll understand more of that in terms of maintaining friendships.

Yes, you can and should be open and honest with your friends. However, there’s a fine line between being honest and being critical. That’s a line you shouldn’t cross.

You’re allowed to criticize your friends. But for you to be able to do that properly, you need to know the difference between constructive and destructive criticisms. You should always opt for the constructive ones.

Whenever you criticize a friend, make sure you do it in goodwill. Make sure your criticisms are understandable, They’re honest but helpful. Never use hurtful words and comments. They’re needless and cruel in this situation.

At the end of the day, just make sure everything you do and say is done and said with the best intentions. Your honesty and helpfulness will be appreciated and once all of that is over, you’ll have strengthened your friendship, thus keeping and maintaining it.

8. Share And Keep Secrets

Secrets are a vital part of every friendship. Friends share secrets with one another all the time. Secrets can also make and break friendships.

If a friend shares a secret with you, make sure you keep that forever. The moment your friend told you that secret, they immediately gave their trust to you. Make sure you don’t break that trust by telling their secrets to other people. You also shouldn’t use those secrets to take advantage of your friends. Don’t use it against them.

Exposing a friend’s secrets to others and/or using that information against them is a sign of betrayal. More often than not, this destroys a friendship beyond repair. Make sure you don’t do anything like this if you want to maintain your friendship.

Once a friend does start sharing their secrets with you, make sure you do the same. Reciprocate. As mentioned, friends share secrets with one another all the time. This doesn’t mean it’s just them that should be sharing theirs, you need to share yours too.

Sharing your secrets isn’t necessarily a “rule” that lets friendships blossom, this only means you’re trusting your friends enough to tell them a few secrets of yours. Trust should go both ways.

If your friends break your trust by telling other people your secrets or using it against you, then that just means they’re probably the kind of people you shouldn’t keep in your life anyway.

9. Don’t Be Too Critical Of Their Other Friendships

It’s just a given fact that all of your friends will have other friends too. Human beings are very sociable creatures, after all. Your friends won’t always be with you when going out. They also meet other people outside of that. Malls, parks, social media, etc. Whenever they do make friends, you need to understand that completely.

What will most likely happen is that you’ll also meet the friends your friends have made. When this happens, make sure you’re not too critical of them. If your friend and someone else ended up building their own friendship, it means they were able to understand each other to a certain degree. You will not always understand that, but they will.

You don’t have to get along with every single one of your friend’s other friends, but sometimes, you will too. Just keep an open mind and allow them in your lives too. Who knows, you may end up being close with them as well.

Sometimes, you’ll encounter friends of friends who you just won’t like at all. That’s fine. It happens to the best of us. But this doesn’t mean you should encourage your friends to stop befriending them as well. Let them be. Their friendship has to run their own course. Just focus on your own friendships.

If you keep on pestering your friends on their other friends, they might think you’re being too jealous or hateful. This may turn them off and that will stop your friendship from going further.

10. Just Enjoy The Friendship

The rules of friendship should always remain unspoken. It is not something you say out loud nor is it something you list down. This is something you remember out of courtesy and respect for your friends. It’s something you do unconsciously if you really care about the friendship. The best thing you can do is to just have fun with the friendship itself.

Your friends are your sources of inspiration, celebration, and your companion through good and bad times. Having friends will have a good impact on your life, both physically and mentally. Make sure you have fun with the idea of friendship.

Once you quickly enjoy the idea of friendship, you will immediately care for all of the friends you currently have. You will also feel more drive to make more friendships. You will unconsciously start going out of your way to make sure all of those friends will remain with you. Nourishing them will become second nature and you will be able to keep and maintain your friendships. You will be an amazing friend towards all of your friends. This is the most important part here.

Consider making friends as an essential aspect of life instead of a chore. Compare nurturing your friendships to your nurturing of yourself. You nurture yourself because you want to remain healthy. It’s not something you do as a chore. Think of your friendships the same way. You nurture them to keep them healthy.

Go Further

Knowing this will free you from wondering why some friends leave while others stick around. In my eBook, Get The Friends You Want, I teach you the friendship skills necessary to meet, befriend, and keep the best people you can find. But we keep a focus on making sure you can get that done within your existing schedule.

Download your copy here: Get The Friends You Want. Give it a try and learn what it takes to have people want to keep you as one of their best friends.

Friendship forever? 6 tips to help you keep friends - Knife

Friendship is the most difficult type of relationship, because it cannot be formally fixed. And the common life of friends does not connect - unlike, say, couples. Not surprisingly, friendships can sometimes be even more difficult than romantic relationships. We understand why with age we have fewer friends and whether this can be prevented.


Why are friends important?

As people age, they lose friends or have trouble making new ones. This makes them devalue friendship: it is supposedly given too much importance. But in fact, friendly communication is extremely important for a person, not only psychologically, but also physiologically. Studies show that friendship helps people maintain physical and mental health, helps maintain normal blood pressure, reduces the risk of dementia, and strengthens the immune system. Scientists also found that emotional closeness with peers helps to gain self-confidence and reduces the risk of developing depression. Loneliness, on the contrary, leads to sad consequences - diseases of the cardiovascular system, early development of Alzheimer's disease, insomnia.

At what age do we lose friends?

It is believed that the peak of a person's social connections falls on 20-30 years. Then they begin to decrease, and the appearance of the family plays a big role here: the partner and children, as it were, take on the functions of friendship. It also affects the fact that free time is becoming much less. As a result, by the age of 65, 25% of people remain without friends at all, which is reflected in their standard of living. At the same time, it is in old age, when work and family no longer take so much strength, that a person experiences a special need for communication. And it just doesn’t exist - or it exists, but not enough. So the social activity of an elderly person is reduced, and this has a bad effect on physical and psychological health.

How do you keep old friendships and make new ones?

Look for a compromise. Friendship cannot be built on ultimatums and peremptory judgments. You can't be a dictator - remember that good relationships are built on compromise. Go meet your friends whenever you can. If they ask to reschedule a meeting, reschedule - and don't hesitate to ask your buddy to do the same if necessary. Flexibility, the ability to bypass sharp corners and not enter into a decisive conflict where this can be avoided is the key to strong friendly relations.

Develop empathy. Many conflicts that break up friendships are due to the fact that people do not hear each other and do not want to enter into the position of another person. As a result, mutual reproaches and accusations arise. It is always important to try to hear your friend and not attribute your thoughts to him. You should not think about people worse than they are: for example, if a person cannot meet with you, referring to important work matters, in most cases it is worth believing this, and not believing that you are being avoided.

In the 2000s, psychologist Jan Jaeger conducted a survey for his book When Friendship Hurts and found that 68% of people had experienced betrayal by their friends. However, this impressive figure hardly says that humanity is so bad. Most likely, the survey participants simply did not sort things out directly and perceived the actions of friends as a betrayal, although in reality the situation could be completely different.

Strive for personal growth. With age, making friends becomes more difficult than in youth, simply because a person rarely goes beyond "home - work". To prevent this from happening, remember that free time can be spent not only at the computer and with the family. Look for additional activities: go to various courses and trainings, pay attention to personal growth. This will help not only make new friends, but also maintain old contacts. The more active and rich your life is, the more interesting it is to communicate with you, and friends will appreciate it.

Set your priorities right. Many people put maintaining friendships at the bottom of their to-do list. This is unfair: friendship is very important, so if you want to avoid the negative consequences of loneliness, make time for it. Close relationships are impossible without personal communication. You should not console yourself with the illusion that later, "someday", you will be able to catch up, and your friend will not get away from you.

Express your feelings openly. People often begin to doubt friendships when they see no evidence of emotional intimacy. This happens because we rarely consider it necessary to thank a person for friendship, to appreciate his contribution to our life in dignity. Be open with your friends, remind them more often how important they are to you. In addition, frankness is very important: if you try to "censor" your communication with friends because you are afraid of appearing ridiculous or weak, this will not lead to anything good. Sooner or later, such relationships will collapse under the weight of the unspoken.

Do not withdraw into yourself. It happens that friends really betray us and we part with them. Or we lose them for some other reason, and then we don’t get new ones anymore, because we’re lazy or it seems like we can do it anyway. Do not cherish your loneliness. Sooner or later you will realize that you made a mistake by choosing a similar path, but it will be too late to change something.

How to maintain friendship | 10 Tips - The Psychology of an Effective Life

A friendly "romance" is written daily, not in one day. Maintaining a beautiful sincere friendship for a long time requires no less effort than working on a love story. There is everything in friendship: both difficult moments and moments of unbridled fun. You need to learn to overcome the first and make the second happen more often.

Friends are our second family, which we chose ourselves. Therefore, friendship deserves some effort to preserve it. Our 10 tips for maintaining friendships.

1. Accept friends with all their faults

Is your friend always late and you are extremely punctual? A friend likes to stay at home, and you are very easy-going? It's okay for friends to have differences, as long as they don't conflict with core values. We have no other choice but to accept the peculiarities of our friends. We cannot ask them to change. Because, in turn, we would also not like it if we were required to become a different person.

After all, the world is big enough to find exactly the kind of people who would be perfect for you as friends. Unlike the family we don't choose. If the shortcomings of friends are so unacceptable to you, it may make sense to stop communicating with them.

2. Be available to friends

To keep a friend, it is important not only to accept him with all his shortcomings, but also to be available to him. It means to be the kind of person he can count on at any important moment for him. Try to be there when he really needs you, even if you have little time for communication in your daily routine. It's true that when things are going well, we rarely meet.

Being a good friend means being there not only in moments of joy, but especially when help is needed. If we are not next to a friend in a difficult moment, is it then possible to talk about friendship at all?

3. Try not to give advice

When your friend seems to be making or about to make a mistake, you will be very tempted to give him advice. Try to refrain yourself from this rash step. You can never be sure that you are right. Your friend knows his situation much better, the more he knows what he should do in his life.

Try not to give advice, even when asked for it. If you want to help a friend without compromising your friendship, limit yourself to simply being there, listening, and asking open-minded questions. On important topics, keep your opinions to yourself. In time, you won't have to regret it.

4. Money and friendship rarely go well together

If you lend money to a friend, there is always a risk of losing both. However, this also applies to everything else. Borrow your car and pick it up afterward scratched. Borrow a book and never see it again. There are exactly as many risks to quarrel and lose a friend as with money.

There is a simple way to keep a friendship. Before lending something, prepare yourself for the fact that you will either never see it again or get it back in poor condition. Then, if a friend keeps his promise, you will have a pleasant surprise. And if not, then you will be prepared in advance for this obviously unpleasant event. Either way, your friendship will be saved.

5. He who breaks, he pays

condition in which received. Of course, financial difficulties happen just like accidents.

If you accidentally damage a book, clothes, car, be sure to replace or repair them. This is the price of your friendship. Pay back borrowed money as soon as possible. If for some reason this is not possible within the agreed time, do not play ostrich and do not hide your head in the sand. Show your intention to honestly return the money by offering, for example, payment in installments.

6. Don't criticize his other half

Has your girlfriend got involved with a man who doesn't respect her? You don't like your friend's new girlfriend? Try not to speak out about a person dear to your friend, even if he has recently appeared in his life. It is much more likely that a friend would rather draw a line under your relationship than end their love affair.

Plus, you only introduce an element of mistrust into their couple when they most need an understanding environment. And then, perhaps, after some fairly short time, you will notice that you were wrong. If this does not happen and their relationship ends in a breakup, which will only confirm your initial thoughts, refrain from statements like "I told you so." Because no one wants to hear that in difficult moments of their lives.

7. Do not rush to judge

He arrives late and you dryly tell him? She forgot about the meeting and it pisses you off? Before lashing out at a friend with an avalanche of reproaches, take a moment to consider your own actions. Are you always perfect? No. Are you always punctual, always remember everything? Also no. Then you can't play accuser. Because most often we ourselves sin precisely by what we are ready to accuse our friends of. In a word, look at yourself in the mirror more often and be indulgent.

8. Stay in touch

If life has divorced you and you no longer live in the same city, it is very easy to stay in touch these days. A small message on social networks, SMS or email will always help to ask once again “how are you?”. Lasting friendship never suffers from distance. And true friends continue their relationship from where they left off, as if they parted just the day before.

9. Gifts support friendship

It is not the gift itself that is important, but the symbolism it contains. A small gift is a testament to the fact that "I thought about you while we were not together." Often a gift reflects the feeling we have for another. All occasions are good to show a friend that we think of him: a gift from a trip, a birthday present, a gift just for no reason at all. And the gift does not have to be expensive at all in order to give great pleasure.

10. Know how to ask for forgiveness

Did you unreasonably reproach your friend for something? Wounded by a word or deceived? When clouds gather in friendship because of you, you need to be able to ask for forgiveness.

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