The thought of starting a new life in a different city is as equally daunting as it is thrilling; despite the excitement you may feel when you think about the prospect of the change of scenery, it can be lonely leaving friends and family behind as you set out on your new adventure. Although you might want to curl up under your duvet after a long day in the new office, the best thing to combat feeling isolated is to get out there and meet new people!
Even the most independent of us want someone to hang out with now and again, and having friends in your new city means that if you ever feel bored or maybe even homesick, there is someone to grab a drink with and help forget your worries! Making connections in a place where you don’t know anyone can be tricky, so we have come up with a few ways to help you make the first friendship move and be surrounded by friends in no time!
It can be tiring starting a new job, but try to resist the temptation to rush home and turn on the TV after a long day, and instead say yes to any offers from your colleagues to socialise! It is likely the people you work with will be the first people you meet in your new city, so if there is the opportunity to make friends with them, take it! As well as making your working environment more pleasant, by getting along with your colleagues you may get introduced to more people, and the more people you get the chance to become friends with the merrier!
Make the first move
It can be scary to put yourself out there, but remember that by moving to a new country (potentially alone) you have already done the scary bit! If you get along with someone at work, or keep making small talk with one of your neighbours, why not invite them to hang out properly? A friendship could flourish as a result and you’ll realise it’s not so scary after all!
Join a group
Although you may not have been on a team or part of a club since school, moving abroad is a great excuse to start with old hobbies again! Joining groups means you will be able to meet people with similar hobbies and interests, making it all the more likely you will hit it off and make some connections. Or perhaps you could join a group to try something completely new – you have already pushed out of your comfort zone by moving abroad so why not take it even further? Who knows, as well as new friends you might find a passion you would otherwise never have known about!
Similar to above, but this time we are talking about digital groups! There are plenty of groups on Facebook for expats and people staying in a certain area, so by joining and posting in any of these you are bound to meet people in a similar position to you! There is also the Meet-Up app, which connects people with similar interests and hosts events so you can meet people in a relaxed environment, which is perfect if you’re feeling apprehensive about putting yourself out there!
Try not to get too hung up over the whole making friends thing and go easy on yourself! You have already made a huge step committing to a new life abroad, and by simply enjoying the experience and having fun, natural friendships are bound to form!