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Is it possible to build a social life in your early twenties?

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Is it possible to build a social life in your early twenties?

I'm almost 21, have zero friends anymore, don't go to school but work with people in their 40s and 50s. By now it seems that everyone has their friendship groups and is making good memories, whereas the last few years have been a blur for me. I don't know where to go from here. Was anyone else in this position?

you are not the first. you will not be the last. you are not even rare. you dont notice people being alone because why would you? when you see someone alone you just assume they are on an errand or whatever. even if people have their 'social groups' there are always htose looking to open up and explore.

the following advice was intended for meeting girls, so please disregard the 'hitting on' specific aspects. the rest should really be what you need.

how do you make friends?

effort. lots and lots of effort. and also, doing what you like. going out is in no way restricted to bars and clubs, though if that is what you enjoy, by all means, go to bars and clubs.

the truest way to find chemistry is to experience your life in the most enjoyable way, and see how you match with the people who come into it. interacting with someone in a casual way shows you how you ACTUALLY get along, not how you hope to get along cuz you really want this to work cuz you need a gf.

so write down a list of all your hobbies, and find a way to externalize them. most people live at least near a city these days.

go to any and all hobby shops and ask about local events. gun shops might have hunting trips. or you can just go to a shooting range. comic book stores have game nights. or live commentary movie nights. if these shops do not host events, offer to host one through them, after all it will only lead to more money through them.

you can even go to a more casual store, lets say, a book store, and stand in your favorite aisle (lets say, horror). talk to everyone who comes by looking for a book. ask what book they are looking for. tell them what book you are looking at. try to spark a conversation abotu your favorite author. maybe take some suggestions. if you really hit it off, try to trade numbers.

its okay if it doesnt pan out. this isnt a scoring system. there is no man in a cloack in space making down on a cosmic chalkboard how many failed conversations you had. 99% of interaction is dumb. you are waiting for the 1% and enjoying talking about your favorite things with strangers until then.

>but anon, going outside somewhere to find out if maybe they have an event doesnt suit my lazy lifestyle!!1!

and for those who simply cannot bring themselves to get up out of the house without a guarantee go to meetup.com and look for something of your interest. no matter what your interest it is on there in a group you can meet with. and if not, you can start your own meet up.

Now, some of you may argue that these sorts of tailored events are attended mostly by men. yes. mostly. but some women too. whats important here is you will be doing something you love, with people who love what you love, and when the right ladies come along you'll know they love it too. you will have that common ground.
how to depen friendships:


lets start with

stress brings people together. its the reason soldiers come back from overseas feeling like they are brothers. the reason teenagers make really strong friendships so fast is partly because they think everything is stressful. they think everything is hard, and the end of the world, and dramatic. they get emotional about everything. and they share those emotions with each other and support each other and quickly become the best friends ever. even if the stress is imaginary, you can still bond over it.

now stress doesn't have to be bad, and it can be manufactured healthily. by which i mean, you can do things that require more effort than just hanging out and chilling.

Got a really good co op game? play it with your friend. play it til the end. beat the game together. go camping together. go on a road trip together. make a movie together, write a book together, anything that makes you work together. something more than just sitting around and chilling. enter a contest. find a friend and do anything that takes at least a few months to complete and keeps you close.

another thing is

now i dont mean spending years together. cuz many people who have known each other for years only know each other superficially.

the truth is that most 'friends' in adulthood meet at max once a week. they use each other simply to relax or have fun. its usually in a group, but even the 1 on 1 time is shallow. you talk, catch up, then go back to your own lives.

someone can know someone for six years and not beclose.

on the other hand people who share the same job and work together daily become REALLY fucking close. or the person you go to school with. or like when you are a kid, spend a lot of time wtih, 1 on 1.

in a group people are less likely to share private details. one on one, they are. less to be embarassed about. people dont share secrets with groups. they share it with one person.

dont be afraid to have an adult sleepover if you can convince someone. the above mentioned roadtrips, camping trips etc. are also great ways to bond. anything that can you hanging out for a full day instead of just the lunch chunk of the day.

finally a third thing im adding

if you want people to open up, you have to open up first. share something personal. you have to be willing to go to someone with a problem and talk about it, but dont whine regardless of the advice. you can say' i dont need advice, i just need someone to listen and to care'. if they are worth being your friend they will. they might share their own experience. and next time they have a problem they might come to you.

good luck hope it helps
Thank you anon, this is really helpful

Don't look for friends.

Look for things to do. Join a gym, go to concerts, do volunteer work, take a "useless" class (cooking, art appreciation, auto repair) at a community college, hang out at the comic book store.

You'll meet other people doing the same thing, so it will be natural to chat. Eventually someone will suggest you all go out for coffee/drink afterward. Some of them will know other people. Some will be opposite-gender-type people.

I took a beginner cooking class. We were all awful at it, and laughed at each other and ourselves. I began to look forward to the classes for the company as much as the cooking. When we got brave enough, we started a "Come to my place for dinner and see if you survive" club, taking turns cooking for each other.
I think this advice would be more applicable to Americans that anyone else. People in Europe don't tend to be as chatty to with strangers and find it weird if you strike up conversation.
Yes, a lot of people do that. Go join a group of something, be it a hobby or a charity group or a religious group.
^this. I live in Northen Europe and even smiling in public seems to scare people.
Let me guess... You're Finnish?
No, Latvia, all the social awkwardness and cold of Finland with extra social injustice and poverty. It's delicious.
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