Congratulation on your successful move to a new city or location! It is understood that post-move tasks can also be overwhelming and challenging, but we believe this can be done in a relaxed mode.
You don’t need to rush it – take your time to arrange your items accordingly. After settling down in your new place; now is the time to join the community and makes new friends.
Making friends can be a daunting task as a new neighbor in the city, but there are ways to it. According to a study, “about 15 percent of the America population relocates every year, and most of them move within a range of 50 to 60 miles”.
This implies that a large group of people does find it difficult to make new friends when they move. If you suddenly find yourself on this page, it means you are one of them.
Many people move for a purpose such as job placement, retirement, educational purpose, or in search of greener pasture; hence, most new occupants in the community first concentrates on the purposes that brought them to the city.
According to Dr. Jan Yager, a sociologist, author, and friendship expert, “large percentage of people who move to a new city go home late at night after their daily activities and as well as over the weekends”.
They are usually found doing one house chore or the other when they get home; hence, they don’t have time for social activities in their life. This has been observed to contribute to their isolation due to lack of friends or having problems making friends.
However, many people forget to realize that loneliness and isolation are not advisable and can have a significant effect on their overall health. While it is hard to make new friends especially as an adult compared to a college student, there are smart ways to get this done easily.
Moving Feedback has researched and packaged this article to share not only how to make new friends when you move, but also to share some factors that may hinder friendship move as a new neighbor and keys that determine easy friendship in every community setup. Read on to uncover them all.
Factors that may Hinder Friendship Move as a New Neighbor
While this may not be applicable to all new neighbors, studies have shown that most of these factors do affect friendship move as a new neighbor in a city or community. Many people love to make a move for friendship, but they are handicapped in one way or the other to do so.
While some problems are personal attributes, some are caused by external forces either from spouse or family pressure. To keep it short, discussed below are some factors that may hinder your friendship move as a new neighbor:
1. It becomes strange to you
If you are just changing your environment or location for the first time, you may find it difficult to know how to make new friends in a new neighborhood.
Many people have been living in one location for over ten to twenty years; hence, making new friends becomes strange to such people, and they are confused about how to go about it.
If you have been around your friends and family for a long time and you suddenly leave them to move to another city or neighborhood, you would realize how difficult is it to create a friendly environment to make new friends in the new community you find yourself.
Some new neighbors need to understand that it takes some actions to make new friends when they move to a new place.
As a new neighbor, you need to get out of your convenience to meet people and start a friendship with them. Many things have changed in the way you make friends in your new location.
There are many ways you can go about it and achieve your aim. Though it may look strange to you if you have not tried it before, how to go about it will be discussed later in this article.
2. It is more complex being a couple
Let’s face it; making friends can be difficult as a couple. To make a successful friendship, your spouse must really like the person you are trying to make friends with. This can even be more complex if you are making a friendship move with another couple.
There are cases where one spouse does not like the other, and this makes things worse for the other party at both sides. Sometimes, you will need to compromise your standard to make things work out for both sides.
3. Having children plays a significant role
While your kids cannot dictate to you who to make as friends, they can make things worse by taking much of your time and keep you around them; hence, there is no much time to go out and make friends as a new neighbor.
On the other hand, children can easily make friends in a strange land, and this can also draw people to their parents. So, they can be a blessing in disguise.
4. When we become selective
Many people are too emotional about making a new friend when they move to a new place. They start to set some standards for a kind of friend they want to move with, as to whether someone is good or not.
They do make a mistake that the person should have things in common with them before they can be friends. The truth is that there is no way you can have things in common with the person you are just meeting for the first time. If you don’t move close to someone, you would not know the person.
Most isolated people today remain isolated because they refused to drop their pride and ready to accept people the way they are. Many new neighbors do forget that it is when they mix with the people in the community that they can know them and finally become pals; hence, being pickier hinders friendship move.
5. We give up quickly
Another factor that hinders friendship move as a new neighbor is that we quickly give up. Maybe you have tried many means to make friends, but you are not getting results as expected, then you give up trying another.
Not all friendship moves are going to work out. Your goal is to make new friends that will last long and not the ones that you would regret later. Giving up after a number of friendship-investment is not the answer to your problem.
There is no doubt; you need people around you beyond your family members. Friends sometimes play some roles to keep the life going.
3 Keys that Enhance Friendship
According to sociologists’ theory of friendship, true friendship largely depends on three key conditions. This theory has been in existence since the 1950s and is still applicable in today’s friendship matters.
While some people are beginning to fault this theory due to civilization, they have not come up with another theory that is contrary to this; hence, it is still valid to date. Below are the three keys to friendship according to the theory:
Closeness to people over a long period naturally results in friendship. If two persons are just meeting in a place, keep seeing and walking together continuously, there is a tendency that they will end up in friendship.
This is one of the reasons college students have pals and groups. Some unknown group of people given the same assignment to carry out as a group ends up discussing to find a way out of the problems given to them.
In the process, they begin to walk together, relating together on issues outside the assignment, and in the end, they become friends.
2. Repeated & Unplanned Meeting/Interactions
There are times when you keep meeting someone within a short period and in the process, interactions take place. It may happen in your new location when you just discover a coffee shop and all the times you go there you keep seeing your neighbor.
You can also see the same neighbor in the church or a get-together you attend the next day. On your way down the street to buy something from the supermarket, you may randomly cross paths with the same person. Studies have shown that repeated and unplanned meetings or interactions can lead to friendship.
So, when you keep running into a person’s path over and over and interacting in the process, there is a tendency that two of you might be friends.
3. Easy Access
When people have easy access to one another, there will be an enabling environment for friendship. Most people like someone that brings his or herself down to mix with them regardless of the position he or she is occupying.
When one is not exposed to people to access, it will be difficult to make friend with such a person. If you give free access to people to come to you or you can easily access someone, there is a tendency for friendship in the long run.
Smart Ways to Make New Friends in a New City
Having known the factors that hinder friendship move and as well as the major keys that enhance friendship move as a new neighbor, the job is half-done. If you are keen on making new friends as you move to a new city, there are some habits you have to develop.
This is not the time to turn down invitations of your neighbors – as it can serve as a means of meeting people. Sometimes, you need to leave your comfort zone to achieve your aim of making new friends.
To be frowned upon, making friends in a strange land can sometimes be challenging unless you are equipped with smart ways to achieve this. While some people are naturally talented in making new friends as a new neighbor in a community, some struggle to do so.
Whichever category you find yourself in, these below smart ways to make new friends will make the task easy for you.
1. Make Yourself Known to your Neighbors
Your first attempt to making new friends in your new place is to introduce yourself to your neighbors. It is not funny – you may have thousands of friends on Facebook and yet have them living next to you in your street without knowing they are the ones.
There may be an enabling environment to make friends, but if you do not make a move, you may eventually miss the opportunity. A brief introduction about what you can do.
Don’t be too shy to say “hi” to a neighbor you just see for the first time. After saying “hi,” other things can follow. If you need any item such as a lawnmower and you discover a nearby neighbor has one, go and meet him or her and introduce yourself as a new neighbor, and you would see how they will accept you with gladness. From there, you can become a good friend.
2. Don’t forget your Past Connections
Moving to a new place doesn’t mean you should forget all your connections at your old location. There is always a principle about people meeting and leaving people. While it takes time to make new friends, it only takes a moment to forget them.
Forgetting old friends can be so easy when one party moves away from another. Before you focus on struggling to make new friends, ensure you don’t forget your old clicks.
They are still relevant even if you make a thousand friends today. You never can tell, there may be some of the old buddies living close to you in your new neighborhood.
Just try Facebook search or alumni network, and you will see that many old pals are few meters away from you. According to Dr. Yager, “keeping in touch with your pass connection can ease your transition period” and make you relax to search for new friends.
So, while you are hunting for new friendships in your new location, don’t ignore your old friends.
3. Invite your Neighbors to a Get-Together or Housewarming Party
Many people may think it is expensive to organize a get-together or meal party, but it is not too much for you to do in a view to know your neighbors better.
Those neighbors you have been meeting and greeting in the street supermarket, saloon, and coffee shops can become friends if you take this single step.
If you are the type that is hospitable, this is the time to make use of your gift and gain new friends in your new location. You can plan a get-together or holiday meal or housewarming party (if you just packed to your home) for people in the community.
This is one of the ways to tell them they have gotten a new neighbor in the community. It is worthy of mentioning that you should not expect a 100% turnover of your invitees.
Remember you are doing this for a purpose; so, don’t place value on the number of people that honor your invitation. You may be surprised to see people a few days later, tendering an apology for not honoring your invitation.
4. Be a Good Neighbor
Building a friendship relationship shouldn’t be a struggle if it is approached properly – friendships can naturally take place when you are good, respectful, and polite to your neighbors. Another way to make new friends is by being a good neighbor in the neighborhood.
Two wrongs can never make a right – if they are not, make sure you are. Many neighbors may even decide to move closer to you due to your behaviors and accommodating nature to them.
This has been found as one of the effective ways to make new friends in a strange land. When they discover you have good attitudes towards everyone that comes on your way, they will be happy to make friends with you – without even ask for it.
Try to be nice and courteous to the neighbors around, be free to them, be always ready to render assistance, and appreciate your neighbors whenever you should do. When you do all these, you will see how people will respond to your gesture.
5. Attend Local Cultural Gatherings
Attending community cultural events is another smart way to meet your neighbors and make friends with them. There are many local cultural gatherings in various neighborhoods; check the community calendar year to see if anyone is coming soon.
You can as well check the official website of the city or local newspapers to view the list of available cultural events you can attend to bring yourself to the limelight of the community. From there, you can introduce yourself to your neighbor and make friends with them.
Some of the yearly local cultural events include music festivals, live concerts, carnival, art festivals, and much more. Attending local cultural events are beneficial because they are focused on catching fun, most are remarkably communal and entail group activities where people showcase their talents.
They are other ways of feeling among the people even as a new neighbor.
6. Try an App
While you are making efforts physically and humanly, you can as well go digital to make friends. The world is now a global village where everyone is connected. There are apps meant for meeting people and making friends.
Just as you are looking for friends, millions of people are also out there making the same efforts – even eager than you do.
Apps such as Nextdoor helps people to connect with each other in the same neighborhood or community. We3 and MeetMe have been reviewed to help in pairing like-minded people in the same street or location.
Bumble is not only a dating app but also connects people to become friends. There are hundreds of these apps that can connect you with thousands of people living close to you that are looking for friends just as you are.
With these, you can sit in the comfort of your home and be making new friends. You can then hook up when everything is set.
However, be cautioned of meeting people in a tricky venue whenever you are physically meeting your virtual friends for the first time.
7. Join Community Facebook Groups
There are many members of the community in your local Facebook groups you can connect to make new friends from your neighborhood. It has been studied as one of the brilliant ways to make new friends when you move to a new city.
Instead of dying of boredom indoor, why can’t you grab your Smartphone, go to Facebook and search for people in your local Facebook page.
Different results will come up; narrow your search down to your neighborhood and you will see different faces you have come across in the market or local gathering.
From here, you can add them as friends and send a private message to them to kick-start your friendship with them.
8. Use your Hobby to Make New Friends
What is your hobby? Some peoples’ areas of interest can be jogging, drinking coffee at the coffee shop, playing tennis, weightlifting, and other outdoor activities that bring people together.
In your bid to make new friends, don’t do it alone, as it can be an avenue to make new friends. Joining a hobby group or club gives you a chance to meet and make new friends. While this theory may be partially true, preparing yourself for friendship can go a long way.
Many people do keep to themselves or do things on their own and don’t bother to mix with people that they share the same interest together; hence, it will be difficult for them to make friends.
Relating to people in the group or club makes it easier for you to know them and make friends with them than otherwise. While undertaking those activities in the group, strike up a conversation that will give other people access to you. If you are not free to group members, you may be isolated, and they will feel that you are proud.
Though you may not partake in the activities to make friends, the truth is that friendship naturally takes place between two or three people when they do things together. So, turn your hobby into a means of making new friends.
9. Give Back to your New Community
You can use one stone to kill two birds by giving back your new community. When you give back to your community, people tend to love charity givers and make friends with him or her, and also, you will enjoy the blessing that follows.
There are many ways you can give back to your neighborhood. These include hosting a fundraiser, joining a board, partaking in public environmental activities, caring for less-privileged, and other volunteering activities.
Before you know it, neighbors will begin to move closer to you, and from there, friendship can spring up.
Making new friends in your new place shouldn’t take much sweat if you are on the right path to do so and also approach it effectively. While you don’t know anyone in the new city, there seems to be someone out there you know very well but it only takes extra efforts to fix such a person out of the neighborhood. However, this is not automatic and may not happen quickly. Take time to study your environment while you are still in touch with your old pals. No matter how smart you are in making new friends; always accept the fact that making a long-lasting friendship is not what will just happen in a day.
You must be ready to drop your pride, let your new friends know your “real you,” and let there be true love in the community. Even, as you are making efforts to make new friends in your new neighborhood, it is important that you don’t force yourself on anyone to become your friend. Play your parts as suggested above and leave the rest. Stay tuned for more informative posts from this page!
Thomas has a degree in literature from Stanford University and a profession in Mass Communication. Thomas is a member of the Moving Feedback research team, an expert in writing educative articles to help readers make the right buying decisions. He is well versed in moving industry matters to give the best advice on moving needs.