When looking for places to meet new people, try to be open to new ideas and experiences. Not everything you try will be successful but you can always learn from the experience and hopefully have some fun while you’re at it.
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- Volunteering can be a great way to help others while also meeting new people. Volunteering also gives you the opportunity to regularly practice and develop your social skills.
- Take a class or join a club to meet people with common interests, such as a book group, dinner club, or sports team. Websites such as Meetup.com can help you find local groups or start your own and connect with others who share similar interests.
- Walk a dog. It’s good exercise for you, great fun for the animal, and an excellent way to meet people. Dog owners often stop and chat while their dogs sniff or play with each other. If dog ownership isn’t right for you, volunteer to walk dogs from a shelter or a local rescue group.
- Invite a neighbour or work colleague for a drink or to a movie. Lots of other people feel just as uncomfortable about reaching out and making new friends as you do. Be the one to break the ice. Your neighbour or colleague will thank you later.
- Track down old friends via social media sites. Make the effort to reconnect and then turn your “online” friends into “real-world” friends by meeting up for coffee instead of chatting on Facebook or Twitter.
- Carpool to work. Many companies offer carpool programs. If your employer doesn’t, simply ask your colleagues if they would like to share rides. It’s a good conversation starter and will help you connect to people who live near you, as well as save on transport costs.
- Attend art gallery openings, book readings, lectures, music recitals, or other community events where you can meet people with similar interests. Check with your library or local paper for events near you.