I’ve just moved to a new city. How do I make new friends?
You’re in a new place.
Maybe you moved there for work, or maybe it was just time to make a big change in your life.
Perhaps you’re in witness protection. (Kidding. We hope.)
In any case, the result is the same: you have a new job (awesome), a new home (also awesome), but no one to hang out with (not as awesome!).
Happily, today we’re going to cover several different ways introverted men can reach out, make lasting connections, and build a new social circle from scratch.
Get ready to learn all about…
- looking in the right places to find other people also searching for new friends,
- finding online resources that connect you with social groups, and
- using local activities as the perfect way to meet people of similar interests.
Once you understand the principles behind where and how to build a new social circle, you’ll be able to apply that knowledge to your new hometown.
Why is it important to make new friends after moving?
If you’ve just made a big move and you finally have a chance to relax and breathe for a bit, it can be tempting to put off social activities in favor of many nights of Netflix and Thai takeout.
After all, introverts by definition need to take some alone time to recharge after a period of stress.
And that’s okay!
However, don’t let this recharge period lengthen into weeks or even months of 95% of your time spent alone in your new place.
If you procrastinate on pushing those social boundaries for too long, it becomes habit to come home after work and settle in all by yourself.
At that point, it can be even harder to make yourself get out into the world and take the necessary steps to build a new social circle.
Now, let’s get started.
The key is to look in the right places.
You wouldn’t walk up to a complete stranger on the street and ask to buy his watch or his car. Those items are probably not for sale, and you might get a negative reaction.
Instead, if you were in the market to buy a used watch or a car from someone, you’d explore eBay, Craigslist, a pawn shop, or a used car dealership.
Those locations make sense. The items listed there are for sale and the owners are clearly looking for someone to make a purchase.
In the same way, you can maximize your chances of building great friendships by looking for people who are also looking to make friends! A win-win.
So, what are the right places to do this?
Anywhere people hang out for social purposes, with the intention of making friends.
This lets others do half the work for you, by sorting themselves into a group of people who feel like being social and therefore attend a social event.
We’ll cover specific examples of locations you can use as a starting point coming up next. But even if you have exhausted everything on our recommendation list, simply remember:
You can use this rule of thumb as a guideline for discovering new places to go to meet people and build out your network of friends.
If people gather there and meet for social purposes, it’s a strong bet that you can join in and successfully make some connections.
Online resources to build a new social circle:
Over the years, a few online meeting points have emerged as winners when it comes to matching up people with similar interests and values.
These are always subject to change, and this is not an exhaustive list, but the following can get you started:
Depending on the city in which you live (Los Angeles, San Francisco, Austin, Dallas New York, Seattle, Denver, Boston, Chicago… the list goes on!), Meetup has dozens or even hundreds of groups available for you to join.
From general-purpose social groups, like…
- singles over 30,
- mid-20s dinner groups, or
- any group with “make new friends” in the description…
down to the most specialized of niche interest groups, such as…
- classic car mechanics,
- fans of old-school noir films, or
- board game figurine painters…
…you can find almost anything on Meetup.
The local chapter of any online communities to which you already belong
For example, you may have an active guild on a video game server. Consider setting up a meet and greet if any of your guild members live nearby!
Or, if you have any social media accounts, try combing through some of your old or forgotten connections. Perhaps you can rejuvenate old friendships that have fallen by the wayside with time.
Sometimes, the best new friends are actually old friends!
Plenty of people have success finding friends with websites such as…
- your city’s local subreddit on Reddit, and
- Bumble BFF and similar “dating-style” websites that are oriented toward making platonic connections instead of romantic ones.
Just remember, even though your search begins online, the ultimate goal is to find new friends and build a new social circle offline.
If you find a promising group, make the effort to set up in-person meet-and-greets and join in on any group functions!
Real-world resources to build a new social circle:
If searching for real-life friends offline makes more sense to you than looking online, that’s also fine.
People made and maintained lifelong friendships before the internet came along!
Many people have turned to online resources as their main methods of finding new friends. But the physical world still holds unlimited potential for making connections if you know where to look.
But first, let’s briefly cover where not to look.
While hanging out at bars and clubs can work for dating…
(though you do not have to even set foot in one! See alternative places to meet women besides bars and clubs, and first date ideas that don’t involve alcohol)
…it’s much harder to convey that you’re looking for platonic friends in places like those.
Despite their reputations as “social hotspots,” if your aim is friendship and not dating, approaching someone in a bar or club is a move that’s likely to be misinterpreted.
Instead, your best bet is to find local events based on your interests, and then attend them!
If any of the following events pique your interest, keep your eye out for flyers, posters, news listings, or other posted event schedules:
- Festivals (Look for a local Renaissance Festival, Bacon Fest, Irish Music Festival, or whatever your new city has to offer!)
- Concerts (Yay, live music! Nashville isn’t the only place for this at all.)
- Board game or card game tournaments at a local gaming shop
- Classes (Think cooking lessons, martial arts training, or anything else that suits your fancy.)
- Theater groups
- Sports games, either for playing or watching
Get your feet wet with your first few ventures into the city. It will become easier and easier to attend events and seize opportunities to make connections!
Conclusion on how to build a new social circle:
Making friends is definitely possible when you have a whole new city outside your doorstep.
To recap today’s post…
- remember to look for new friends in places where other people are also trying to make new friends,
- take advantage of the internet’s wealth of options for online social communities, and
- harness your inner explorer and check out local events you see around town.
With some practice, you can build the habit of pushing your comfort zone little by little until you’re happy with your new social life!
For more help with that process, download our free ebook, “Why PUA Doesn’t Work for Introverts & What Works Instead.”
And when you’re ready to take all of your dating and social skills to a whole new level, consider our personalized Launch Your Dating Life program. By talking with us in a 1:1 phone call (apply here), we can get to know your exact situation and see if the program is right for you!