Moving from any location can be a daunting prospect. Add in the fact that you could be miles, if not states away from your current social circle and the world suddenly seems intimidating. Don’t panic. Before you start retreating into an online-only world, try these seven reliable ways of building a social circle in your new location.
1. Research Before You Move
Before you even pack your bags, get online and explore your new town’s website or Chamber of Commerce website. Identify events, community festivals, local celebrations, farmers markets and local businesses that are of interest to you. Shortly after you move, make a conscious effort to meet new people by attending these upcoming events or visit the local shops that look intriguing.
2. Introduce Yourself to Your Neighbors
By neighbors, we don’t just mean the people that live right next door. Your new neighbors could be the owners of local shops, parents accompanying their children to the bus stop or people out walking their dogs. If you are uncertain of anything about your new area, asking a neighbor is a great way to make new friends and find out information. Ask about anything from “what is the best pizza delivery in town” to “where is the closest recycling center.”
3. Find Local Groups on Facebook
Have you ever sat in front of your Facebook page and searched for your city? Well, give it a go, and you’ll be surprised at how many local groups there are, from swap shops to mother and baby groups, with a dose of everything in between. Some of the groups might be private but don’t let that deter you. Request to join and post on the wall.
4. Get to Know Other Parents at School
If you have children, then one of the best ways to meet new people is at your child’s school or through school-sponsored programs. It can be a bit intimidating talking to a group of parents who seem to have already formed a group, but remember, not only could you form a similar social circle you could also find some play dates for your children. This, in turn, will make it simpler for them to fit-in too, it’s a win-win situation.
5. Sign up for a Class or Club
Park districts usually offer classes and clubs. This is a perfect way to meet others who share a similar interest, passion or hobby. You will also automatically see these people on a regular basis giving you a chance to get to know them.
Or search for a club or group that reflects your interests on MeetUp.com. This location-based website offers many social groups that meet locally. So, if you’re looking for a running buddy, there’s a MeetUp group for that. Interested in free meditation? Yep, there’s a MeetUp. Want to learn photography? You’ve got it. There’s a group for that too.
Volunteer for a cause or perhaps a charity that you are excited about. Not only help others by volunteering, but you might also meet other people with similar interests and values as you. Sometimes doing something good makes you feel more confident and more likely to to be sociable and make new friends.
7. Say Yes!
Above all else, the best way to make a new social circle is just to say “yes.” If you’re tired from your big move, then you might tend to turn down invitations and skip the social interaction. Push yourself to get out and interact with new people. Whether it’s going over to someone’s house for dinner, a coffee date, or even a book club, just say “yes” and see where it leads.
Relax and Smile
Remember that people will react to your intention, so smile, introduce yourself, and you’ll soon have a fantastic new social circle.