How do you begin to build relationships in a place where you have no previous connections?
If anyone has ever moved to a new place, they know how difficult it may be to build relationships/make friends. Has anyone experienced this recently (or not so recently) and had success? What places did you visit? Did you use electronic means i.e. email, facebook, twitter, etc?
All you have to be is open minded...I meet people in Supermarkets, gas pumps, registration lines at school..everywhere you go there are people you can meet..some people ..in the very rare times that I have dined alone, have offered to sit with me...Oh, even in libraries...you meet people...
Every time you meet someone, ask them about their work, where they came from, their family life, their hobbies and other things you usually know about your friends. As they answer, show them you're listening and respond with any common interests you might have. This will build a link between the two of you, and at some point, you'll realize you've become friends.
If you are a writer, it is fun to join the local writers group. I did this when I moved back to England after more than twenty years abroad. I fit in as a writer with the group - and this is the important aspect of it - "feeling as though you fit in somewhere".
If there is a local Book Club, then this is a good way to express your thoughts and get to know other's thoughts, to slowly build connections.
If you are a walker, or have some hobby, then perhaps there are like minded people in your area, who would be happy to include you in their plans.
I also found that the local library had notices which helped me get to know who my neighbors were. I learned how very different we were. The local newspaper was a source of local information too.
I once submitted a poem to a competition the newspaper was having and, as it happened that week, I won! The journalist came to photograph me and I went onto the front page. People said "Oh I saw you this week in the ....and we started chatting" (and it was about what is dear to me, possibly even to them.....again it is all about how connections start to get made.)
About friendship though, it takes years to make a friend, I find.
I wish you every success in your new place. I'm not of a generation that has absolute faith in socializing through the network, though lots of people do and many with success.
Make some cookies or deviled eggs, take them to your neighbors and introduce yourself.
I've moved so many times in my life, including some out-of-state moves, but the one I made about six years ago was the hardest ever!
I'd only moved 4 hours away from the community where I was well established and had a successful business, but I'd gotten tangled up in a bad relationship that took me a long time to escape. Also, the psychological effects of that coupling devastated my self-esteem and dropped me into the depths of depression for a long time. I was self-employed, so I couldn't really meet people "at work" as I'd always done. I found some classes but didn't make solid connections there. I also located groups at meetup.com (a great resource, by the way) but only got myself to one of them. Again, I made some business connections but nothing that sprouted into friendship. (I wasn't in a great state of mind, remember, which certainly affected my ability to be appealing to others.)
I finally found a singles group that played darts every week, which I joined because I like darts and pool. My social circle officially expanded to about a dozen people. Through a connection there, I met my husband, which has led to meeting many other people through his family, his work, and our social outings.
I've become a huge believer in asking people to introduce me to people they'll think I like. It worked for me in ways I didn't expect it to!
One thing that really interests me is how different people get out there to build relationships. I recently moved to Edinburgh, Scotland for 4 months, and my friend and I were starting from zero. We didn't really know anyone. I found that people (University age and 30's) used social media a lot. Things were set up on Facebook, and we would meet others for coffee without having their cell number. From there relationships were formed. We would do things other than coffee. We opened our home to others. People came and went. They felt comfortable. We also were visiting different churches to network and meet people.
I just moved back to Memphis after my time in Scotland. I was raised here, but all my friends are in other places in the U.S. and the world. So now I feel like I'm starting from zero. I don't know how long I'm going to be here, but I'm trying to find different means to meet people of all different types.
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