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How to Make Friends Like You Did As a Kid

Follow the Example of Kids When It Comes to Making Friends


Remember when you were a kid and you seemed to make a new friend every single day? It can still be that way. Just think back to your childhood and how you behaved back then in your friendships. When people grow up and mature they tend to get more guarded with friendships, so learn to open up your heart to the possibility of meeting new people. Here are a few tips to help.

Focus on Activities

Friends leaping for fun.
Jordan Siemens/Taxi/Getty Images
When you were a kid, you met friends at the playground or school and got together mainly so you could play. Use that same mentality now that you are an adult. Find others who share the activities you like to do, and build friendships from there. By focusing on your hobbies, you'll be getting the satisfaction from engaging in an activity you enjoy, and will attract more new people to you as a result.

Forgive Easily

Do you remember when your best friend would knock you down or pull your hair one minute, but you'd be back to being best buds the next? The same can be true now that you're an adult. Forgiveness actually gets easier the more we do it. One trick that helps is looking at your friends as fallible humans. They are going to let you down at some point, so don't hold it against them when they do. The trick is not whether or not they slip up, it's how they act when they do. So if your friend makes a mistake but is sorry for it, forgive them and move on.

Get to Know Your Neighbors

Your friends probably came mainly from the houses that were close to yours when you were a kid. Remember when a new family moved into your neighborhood and you couldn't wait to find out if they had other kids your age? Use that excitement level to get to know the people in your neighborhood. There are plenty of different stages of friendship, so make an acquaintance today and you might be able to become friends somewhere in the future.

Show Up in Person

Sure, things like social networking weren't around when many of us were kids, so what we did instead was just go to someone's house and ask if they could play. That personal touch might elude some of our friendships today, especially when we spend so much time online and have such busy lives, but it doesn't have to. Rather than stay at home and email or text our pals, why not schedule a friendship date? If you have a busy day, see if you and a friend can tackle some of your to-do items together. This gives you both a chance to bond and feel better about getting things done.

Let Everyone Get a Turn

As kids, we played sports or board games, and everyone got a turn to shine. As an adult, friendships can become one-sided, with one friend giving time and emotions and the other just taking. If you're in a friendship like this, speak up if you're being taken advantage of. Or, take a step back if you're the one doing the taking. The benefits of friendship come from the emotions we get out of it, and you can only achieve that with friendship that is balanced.

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