How to Make Friends as an Adult

Do you ever feel completely disconnected? Do you dream of going on coffee dates and adventures with a group of fun women like you- all having a good laugh and some heartfelt, fulfilling conversations?

You're done with school, and now you're at a loss for how to make friends without that forced daily interaction. Sound familiar? Well, ME TOO girl. I've been there. But I got you! 

I want to share some ways to make awesome and genuine friends as an adult! Let's put an end to that longing for meaningful friendships, okay? Here are 5 simple ways you can make more local friends! 


1. BE FRIENDLY. (Duh!) 

If you wanna make friends IRL, you gotta be friendly in your daily life. Smile. Be nice. Talk with your cashier and your barista. Maybe this is just the Idaho in me talking, but you can make friends with all sorts of people if you just set the intention to BE FRIENDLY in your daily life. 

For example, I have a favorite cashier at the grocery store. Her name is Jen, and I freakin' love her. I always go to her line, even if it's a little longer wait, and she's always so excited to see me. We have a good talk, we know what's up in each other's lives.

Maybe that just sounds sad, but you're the one on a post giving you advice for making friends, I'm just keeping it real. We're all goofballs here, so we may as well embrace it. 

I've had several close friendships spring from just having regular conversations with my favorite baristas! (Talk about a pro coffee buddy!)

I don't hold up the line everywhere I go, but I usually have a nice brief chat with my cashier or with the people waiting in line with me, and it's a lot of fun making those little connections, just sharing a moment of genuine interest in others. Especially if you're nervous talking with people, get out there and make those small brief connections. Imagine how great it would feel to be the reason someone smiled. 

A quick side note- one of the #1 reasons we decide to take this step… and then don’t… is because we don’t feel GOOD about ourselves. Right? We’re uncertain, we’re nervous. We don’t know how to dress or present ourselves the way we want to be seen by new people, and we get nervous and leave without saying hello- or we never even leave the house. This is what my mentorship program is here to help with. I mean, that’s what my whole blog is here to help with and you’re welcome to keep taking whatever helps you from my writing! But if you want more support- start here.



2. Engage in social media groups!

I resisted social media for SO LONG! Like, I HATED it. Especially Facebook. But when I started working with a life coach, I realized those underlying issues I had with social media were coming from two sources. 

First, I had a miserable bunch of people! 

Your vibe attracts your tribe, but on social media that goes one step further: your tribe's vibe attracts your tribe TOO! It's all connected. 

Well, my family is part of my tribe too and- as much as I love them- some of them have a horrible vibe going for them!

Social media helped connect me to my family and old friends, but it also helped draw connections to people my family was connecting with and all of their low-vibes attracted a lot more low-vibe people into MY feed!

When I learned to UNFOLLOW people, to make sure I only followed people intentionally, people who's lifestyle and energy were aligned with what I wanted for myself and with the kind of people I wanted in my own life, suddenly Facebook became a really great place to network and share!  

The second issue I'd had with Facebook came from my own desire for validation.

I got out of the cycle of looking for validation and approval in so many aspects of my life, but in Facebook I would so easily fall back into that mindset of wanting more likes, more comments, more messages.

Once I learned to manage my time on Facebook, spend time on my own mindset and grounding meditation practice every day, and stop looking at it as a competition or source of self-worth, it got a whole lot more fun!

It became less serious, and more about those connections. Which is what we want! 

If you have issues with Facebook or social media in general, I encourage you think a little deeper about where those issues might be coming from! 

I'll step down from that soapbox now. On to the actual point!

If you want to make genuine friends, try out those local Facebook groups! Look at the groups for your area and if any of them interest you, join them!

Interact with people.

Start commenting on posts that are interesting to you. Engage people. Ask questions, encourage them where encouragement is due. Offer suggestions and recommendations when people are asking. Start engaging with people in your area and when a connection is made, shoot them a private message!

I can't tell you how many friendships these days begin that way! It's such a fun way to make friends who are really close to you and interested in similar things as you! 

For safety, remember to meet in a public place, of course! And have fun with it! 

3. Attend local classes and events!

This can be ANYTHING! Join a spin class or a yoga class. Join a gym and post in that Facebook group that you just joined x-gym and are looking for an accountability partner, see if anyone wants to be your gym buddy. Get creative! If you're on a tight budget, look for free events and classes. Free yoga week, introductory classes, donation-based classes. Join a book club at a local library or book store.

If there's a college nearby, check out their Facebook page or website for free events. A lot of colleges do fundraising events that non-students are welcome to join. This is an especially good one for you college-age or freshly-out-of-college ladies who are looking for people close to your age! 

Don't just put your head down and do the work. Come early and stay late to talk with other members. Strike up a conversation with the instructors or with other students. 

4. Volunteer in an area you care about! 

This is one way to make friends that can be SO. MUCH. FUN! Volunteer at local non-profits! Personally, I ADORE elderly people, so I love volunteering in nursing homes and senior centers. But if that's not your jam, don't even think about doing that!

Think about what interests you- does your local humane society need people to come play with the cats and dogs? Mine always does and if you're an animal lover you're definitely going to meet some like-minded people!

You can volunteer at schools, hospitals, soup kitchens and homeless shelters, animal shelters, with organizations and foundations that support women coming out of abusive situations, you can look into programs like Big Brother Big Sister. There are so many possibilities! 

5. Do the activities you wish you had friends to go do with you! 

I mean, if you want to meet people who will go do stuff with you, maybe you should start being the kind of person who does that STUFF. Just sayin'. 

I LOVE hiking, and I always wished for friends to go hiking with. I wouldn't go because my husband was working and I had nobody to go with. When I finally gave in and went by myself, I made 5 new friends- 5 new hiking buddies- that same day! 

Get out of your shell, go do things on your own, and while you're out there INTERACT with people! Look them in the eye, smile, say hello, ask how they are! Start a conversation up. Ask about their cute dog. Compliment their impeccable style or their killer tattoos. If you want to be noticed, start noticing others. 

So there you have it. You now have 5 new fool-proof ways to make friends! Get out there and do it! 


Want to make a friend right this second?

Hi! I'm Jessica.
Come find me on Instagram and say hello! I’d love to meet you.


Jessica Peña

One more time in case you were thinking about it- for more support in these areas and some reassurance and fresh perspective right at your fingertips, take a look at my mentorship program. This is exactly what it’s for!