If you’re preparing yourself for another solo Netflix sesh, you’re not alone: many Londoners have been using old mate Google for help on finding pals in the capital.
How do I make friends in London? is one of the most googled questions by Londoners.
Research shows that London is one of the loneliest places in Europe, with 52% of Londoners feeling lonely. That is pretty bad on its own before you factor in other studies that have linked loneliness and social isolation to mortality. Not good!
Making new friends is undoubtedly a good move. But the problem is that as an adult, finding new friends is not easy – particularly in big cities like London. If you’re looking to get into the dating scene or networking in a business context, there are plenty of apps, groups and events, but what can London offer people just wanting to make friends?
The great news is that the internet is full of ideas. A quick search will give tips that vary from the practical (joining a sports team or going to meet-ups with peoples who share your interests) to the eyebrow-raising (friendly swingers extending open invitations to their wife-swapping clubs). Of course, Coronavirus lockdown measures permitting. You’ll also find a good number of Redditors extolling the virtues of chewing your face off in a nightclub chioom…. lol Without repeating what is already out there.I can tell you that in my experience, these are the top three tips for making connections and finding friends in the city:
1 – Volunteer in the community
Volunteering is a great way to meet new people, and do some good whilst you’re at it.
Check out Team London volunteering for ideas and opportunities.
You can also check out Hands On London, a popular charity facilitating community based volunteering.
2 – Learn something new
It’s always fun to learn something new, plus it’s a good way to meet people! Check out Hotcourses, a fantastic platform to find nearby courses in just about anything. Painting, wine tasting, astrology, knitting, philosophy – whatever takes your fancy, you’ll sure to find like-minded people and learn a little too.
3 – Exercise, but make it fun
If you’re itching to keep fit, have fun and connect with new people, London’s got you covered.
Check out Rabble, a novel type of social sports club disguising exercise as fun games like dodgeball, British bulldog, and something called ‘zombie hunt’ (we’re extra curious about that one!).
Check out Facebook groups and google your question often. There are new things coming up all the time. You’ll definitely find something you fancy…
But, I wanted to tell you about something that I have read and it is important to bear in mind.
According to Sarah Stein Lubrano at The School of Life, making new friends is not about what you do; it’s about having great conversations. Especially, being brave enough to go deep.
When chatting to people, it’s vital not to remain on the surface because you don’t really make friends that way, warns Stein Lubrano. People must think about “conversational crossroads”, where you can move from having a surface conversation to talking about feelings. That’s how important connections are made.
So, lonely Londoners, the secret to making friends is to break that frown and open up to people. … Perhaps avoid trying it on the tube in the morning. Better safe than sorry…