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Developing and maintaining long-lasting friendships can be challenging for some. Having friends is important. In addition to filling up your social calendar, maintaining quality friendships can have tremendous benefits on your general health.

Forming Friendships

From the playground to the classroom, most children have no problem making friends. When it comes to adults, developing and maintaining long-lasting friendships can be challenging for some. Some adults find it is difficult to get out and meet people, a necessary step in forming friendships. Some people are so busy with work and family life, that they even find it difficult to maintain a relationship with existing friends.

 

Many times, adults find that in addition to all of their responsibilities and priorities, their interests may change, leading to the friendship drifting apart. Job changes or promotions that require relocation can also make it difficult to meet people in a new environment.

Making and maintaining quality friendships are about just that...quality. When it comes to friendship, quality wins out over quantity every time. Having 1 or 2 quality friendships is much more significant in terms of health benefits than having a dozen mediocre friendships. When you set out to improve your social life and develop meaningful friendships, there is no magic number of friends that you should set your sights on.

While people who are especially social may thrive with a large network of friends, others who are less social and prefer more one-on-one time with friends may prefer a smaller circle of 1 or 2 tight knit friends. And in terms of friendships, not all are created equal. Some friends are good for leisure activities such as attending sporting events or going to a movie, while other friends are on more of a personal level, those with whom you are able to share your deeper thoughts and emotions with.

Individuals who have a difficult time meeting new people and fostering new friendships need to simply broaden their horizons and enlist some creative efforts. If you are a parent or a dog-owner, you can simply go for a stroll in a local park with your child or dog. There are bound to be other parents and pet-owners there as well. Striking up a conversation with a stranger can be easy when you share a common interest. If there is no park in your immediate vicinity, you can simply go for a walk in your neighborhood. Other members of your community are likely to be out and about doing the same thing.

Take up a hobby or join a gym

Some of the best ways to meet new people are to take up a hobby or join a gym. Many fitness enthusiasts who have a passion for exercise are more than happy to welcome newcomers into their circle. Consider joining a gym, taking an exercise class at a local community center or signing up for recreational sports leagues in your area.

Making friends can be as simple as accepting an invitation from someone who invites you to a social gathering. Many times, social opportunities will present themself. Pay attention to those opportunities and take advantage of them. If a few co-workers ask you to join them for lunch, take them up on the invitation. A simple lunch meeting can be a starting ground for the development of a quality friendship down the road.

Continue reading after recommendations

  • www.mayoclinic.com/health/social-support/SR00033/