Girls Weekend in CharlestonBike Ride through the Battery, Charleston Bike Ride through the Battery, Charleston

Today, thanks to the continuous backing and support of OLAY, I’m sharing something quite a bit more personal. Tackling my fear and struggle of making friends as an adult. Specifically, as it relates to living in a new city. I think this is something we can honestly ALL relate to on some level. I know for me personally, moving to Charleston and exploring new friendships has taken a lot of thoughtful time and courage. But I can truthfully say I’m so incredibly grateful for my friendships and community I have here. It’s something I never really had while living in Florida.

I’ll be sharing a few things that have {or haven’t} worked for me over the past few years. When Sterling and I moved to South Florida after college, itwas also a new place for me. Neither of us are from there, so the move to Charleston wasn’t too far outside my comfort zone. I’m no expert, but sharing my experiences helps even just one person, it was worth sharing. I can’t thank OLAY enough for encouraging women, like myself, to share these important fearless stories with one another!

Pointers for Making Friends as an Adult

CREATE YOUR OWN COMMUNITY

I can’t stress this enough. When you move to a new city where you don’t know anyone, you can’t just sit back and expect to meet your people, you have to actively seek them out! Making friends as an adult is tough, we all know this. So as silly as it may sound, do research, connect on social media, see if there are any groups or organizations you can partake in within your community, any open events, clubs etc. Better yet – create your own event or community group! I started a Wine Club one Wednesday of each month which continued to grow and grow. Women began inviting their friends, who invited their friends, and so on. Like attracts like, so trust the people you invite to your circle will invite other like-minded people. Community grows from there!

I adore all of the incredible women I’ve connected with Charleston – they’re kind, driven and inspiring. I’m so grateful for my community and grateful for the fact we’re all open to connecting not only with one another, but connecting our friends with friends! Without any sense of hesitation, motivation or jealousy attached. That’s when you know you have a great community. When women really supporting each other, and not just with their words, but with their actions.

PUT YOURSELF OUT THERE + HAVE NO SHAME ABOUT IT

Haha, this is a good one. I think a lot of us, especially as we age, get stuck in our ways. You have your little ‘group’ and are in your groove. I know for me personally, I never had the opportunity to date via an app {they were pre-Sterling and I}, so the concept of meeting friends online has always been a strange taboo in my brain. But times are a-changin’ folks – people are building real relationships through all kinds of un-conventional methods, whether it be online or in person. Blogging has allowed me to meet so many amazing women in other parts of the country {insert my #BloggersDoTravel babes}. And I connected with one of my closest friends in Charleston literally by introducing myself at a store she was working at! I felt totally uncomfortable and out of my element in the moment, but she seemed like a genuinely kind person and not a total freak haha so I went for it. Thankfully she turned out to be one of the best humans I’ve ever met and ended up inviting me to a rooftop happy hour the very next day! Instant besties, obv, and I met even more amazing women that evening – some of whom have turned into what will be lifelong friendships.

Putting yourself out there, and not being ashamed about it is super important when you move to a new city. Just remind yourself that other women either have been or ARE in the same boat. It can be awkward going on a ‘blind girl date’, trust me I know. But if you’re willing to put yourself out there and open to truly connect with others, it will pay off in your relationships.

KNOW THAT NOT EVERYONE IS FOR YOU

At the end of the day, we all want to be accepted and liked. That’s just human nature, but the truth is you won’t connect with everyone you meet. And I’ve learned that’s 100% okay. It doesn’t mean you’re a bad person or unlikable! I used to get caught up in the ‘omg why doesn’t she like me’ mental head game. But you know what, you don’t have to like everyone, and here’s the kicker – not everyone has to like you…it’s totally okay. Not that you shouldn’t be kind and gracious to others, but you don’t have to be everyone’s BFF. No one had that much energy.

Don’t beat yourself up if you put yourself out there once, twice, heck – a dozen times, and you’re just not feeling it. Keep at it; your humans will come! Spending time and energy on people that you won’t connect with long term, will effect your ability to invest in new, more fulfilling relationships. I hope I’m articulating that well! It’s something I’ve struggled with in the past, so totally open to questions.

QUALITY OVER QUANTITY

This is something I struggle with on the regular. I’m a true extrovert by nature. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy my alone time, but I really do LOVE meeting new people and socializing on the regular. With that comes a lot of new connections, and connections that have different levels of intimacy. The key for making friends as an adult, as opposed to in our college years where you seemingly met someone your age with similar interests every other day on campus, is discerning which of those relationships is worth investing in. We may think we have all the time and energy in the world, but the reality is even the best of us get a little burnt. Be selective {and perhaps a little selfish} with your time. Invest in a few relationships or new connections that you really click with off the bat. The older I get the more I can determine pretty quickly if someone is ‘my people’. Building a friendship takes time…lots of time. Time to have surface chats, time to eat together, drink together, celebrate together, time to make memories and joke, time to perhaps have disagreements and discover your differences, time to meet their family…you get it. Your time is valuable. Spend it in the company of people that really care about you and give you the same level of respect and friendship. You don’t have to be friends with everyone you meet. A couple good good gal pals goes a longgggg way in having a solid support system.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Olay. The opinions and text are all mine.

photos by Julie Livingston Photography, Rachel Red Photography + Mary Beth Creates  

Lessons in Making Friends as an AdultMaking Friends as an Adult

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Comments

I love this POST.it is seriously exactly what I need to read. I have recently moved to a new city and have really been struggling making friends. I am definitely going to implement some of your tips! Thanks FINGERS crossed wish me LUCk!

    This melts my heart. Thank you for sharing, Alissa! It’s definitely a tough spot to be in, but I promise it gets better <3 xx - K

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