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How do I make my first friend? I'm in my very early twenties

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How do I make my first friend?

I'm in my very early twenties , I haven't had any friends in some years

It feels so weird starting from this point, I forgot how to even get past the acquaintance stage to making plans outside of school/work and I haven't really done so in years due to some sort of avoidance personality disorder, deep social anxiety and I guess not actively looking for people with similar interests as I

I start college soon, and not sure how to get into the mindset of someone that isn't a societal freak. I'm ashamed to get closer to anyone cause I'm scared they'll see how lonely I am and the barren calendar and evenings that are my 'life'

I can barely keep eye contact with people, and mainly when I'm talking much about something specific, then I can feel my face light up and can pretend to be a person much easier, otherwise I'm usually awkwardly silent or inquisitive to a somewhat naive point

I'm sick of staying home every night, especially weekends or times like this when everyone has plans with friends or family, I feel sick thinking about how much time I spend alone, and that I don't know anyone as socially isolated as I am or have ever encountered such a coward and miserable person, who doesn't know how to express his emotions besides a few repetitive gestures or replies which I'm sick of doing myself
>>
Why didn't you start college at eighteen?
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>>17911245
I worked a while, and I'm glad I did. If I had gone straight to college I would've chosen a shitty major I had no idea about

At this age I'm much more academically open, chose a good engineering major for a good paying job eventually with grades in mind


I don't see why this matters? Many people start college in their early twenties
>>
Lurking ITT

I've been recommended Civic Orgs and Church but theres no civic orgs around here and IDK if I can wake up that early reliably
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>>17911242
What are your interests then anon?
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>>17911276
Film, literature, music, politics, any mix of those

I guess they're run of the mill things, but spending so much time as I did my taste and perspective is completely different than anyone around me, they're things you can pretty much enjoy home alone and aren't social activities

I consume these things more than any sort of active participation really
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>>17911242
You're going to college, where every new freshman will be in exactly the same situation as you - in a new place knowing nobody. People will be eager to meet new friends, and most of the usual rules of shyness - not talking to people on lines, not just walking up to someone and introducing yourself, etc - won't apply. Everyone will be doing just that, and be open to that from you.

Meanwhile there will be loads of events - parties, etc. - designed specifically to let new students meet each other. Also all campus clubs and organizations will be welcoming new members, so if there is something you're particularly interested in, you can instantly meet others who share your interests.

And nobody knows you, which means that nobody knows your reputation or pigeonhole as a shy guy or outsider. If you could pull it off, you could present yourself as a social smoothie and everyone would believe it. But even if you don't, you're starting with no labels or preconceptions about you.

And finally, you won't be out of place for being a few years older. College isn't just for 18 year olds anymore, and there will be lots of people your age or older. There might even be special events or programs for older students, or you can just recognize each other and come together over a shared situation.
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>>17911296
This I'd really good advice
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>>17911296
This. Just be prepared to take action. And for the love of god, be humble. Don't try to act like a Super Cool Guy because with your level of social experience you'll likely come across as cringy. Just go to any gathering, talk to anyone about anything. Look for things to do together. But don't wait for them to come to you.
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>>17912147
This. Fucking this. I fucked up my college years because all what he said. Please, for your own sake, listen to what this guy is saying.
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