During a quick water break at the halfway point of an intense circuit workout, filled with upper cuts and med-ball slams, I locked eyes with the girl next to me exchanging a “WTF are we doing here” look. I felt her pain, I too was struggling to fight through the non-stop, 8am boxing class. After class, she and I passed each other, sharing tired smiles and a unspoken sigh of relief that we had survived. There was a zero percent chance I was going to make it through the rest of the morning without a coffee, and since I was heading there anyways, I invited my boxing partner to join me.
Rachel and I had the best time chatting about our goals and travel plans over coconut milk lattes. She works in fashion, which I thought was totally cool. We both have blogs, love yoga, and care about sustainability. It was a legit “friend first date” and we had a ton of “friend chemistry.”
The key to making friends as an adult is not only finding that “friend chemistry” ie. people that you actually want to spend time with and vice versa, but taking the time to see them again after you initially meet. Rachel and I met for a pilates class the week after, and went to mindfulness workshop together last weekend. We officially made time to nurture a friendship and got to know each other in the process. Go us!
It seems like Rachel and I’s friendship started off easy, but it’s definitely a unique situation. I have met tons of girls at events, classes, etc. that I seemed to click with, but have yet to meet up with again. Not because the feeling wasn’t mutual, but it’s like an impossible math algorithm making schedules work and dedicating a weeknight to getting to know someone new. It’s exactly like dating, to be honest.
MY BEST ADVICE FOR MAKING FRIENDS IN THE WILD, i.e. as an adult, is this:
- Join a Community – For me it’s been The Wing, Nike Run Club, and my amazing little yoga crew. The more you frequent a space or activity, the more likely you are to bond with the wonderful ladies who also frequent that space or activity. What’s great about this is you get to enjoy something you love while also spending time with great people who love it as well. This results in friendships formed with minimal effort required. Not to say that you shouldn’t make effort, you totally should! But friendships within communities are just easier and more natural.
- Build Friendships in Groups – My friend Rosemary was kind enough to share to her group of friends with me by inviting me to an all-lady dinner party and to yoga classes. These group activities have allowed me to bond with her and her friends, and enjoy some wonderful girl time. 1) Thanks Rosemary, you’re an angel and 2) Find yourself a girl group and invite everyone (and have them invite their friends) to dinner/brunch/hangs in the park. Sharing and mixing existing friend gangs by getting together for a group activity is a great and low pressure way to make new friends.
- Have No Fear – Compliment her boots, ask her to join you for a salad, tag her in an Instagram meme. Friendship can pop-up and blossom before you even realize it, so have no fear and just be yourself.
It’s a little less natural, making friends as a working adult. It’s not as easy as in college. I honestly can’t even remember how I managed to form my amazing girl gang during that time, it just kind of happened.
The great news is no matter how old we are, no matter how busy work and life gets, or how very married and motherly we might become…we are always going to need our girlfriends to call for advice, to invite over for wine, or to bond over womanly excellence with.
Just know you always have a friend in me. You and me, we got this!
Feb 25, 2017
Special thanks to a few of my favorite NY Women– Rosemary and crew, Laurel, Rachel, and my kick-ass Wing Women– for the inspiration behind this blog.