New people, new chances! So I started a new job at a big engineering firm. From day one I try to connect with everyone I meet. Confident that all encounters will go well. Hopefully, I can make a few new friends among my colleagues. Like all the awesome people I befriended at my last job.
As we have lunch, slurping some cheap goulash soup, I try to go to a deeper level. But my newfound lunchmates were reluctant, rather discussing the weather. The weather?!? Fuck that!
Only then I realize, I don’t know any of these people, not really, nor do they know me.
Despite being surrounded by people, I felt lonely.
How do you go from only knowing people to being friends? It’s not as easy as I thought. I start remembering the long arduous process of befriending my former colleagues. Shit that’s true, that did take a long time. Or any of my other friends, all gradual processes. Fun though!
Colleagues are one example. But going from acquaintances to friends is ambiguous. Often we don’t know how to take superficial contact further to deep friendship. Especially as we get older.
Playground socializing is so easy compared to when adulting. As a four-year-old, you throw sand at some kid, say sorry, share a popsicle. Boom, 5 minute friendship.
A nice four-step process worth of a BuzzFeed article. But why isn’t it that easy as adults? It would be nice if you could go up to people and say: “Hey let’s be friends”. Then hang out and do fun stuff! But that somehow never works,…
Even in your late twenties and thirties, there are fewer opportunities for friendship. It even takes longer to create them.
But no matter what age, we all need friends.
It is nice to be invited by people you feel comfortable with. To connect and spill your heart. But as you struggle to make new friends, it can feel like you are destined to be forever alone.
There are many people having this problem. It is widespread in modern society. In the UK for example, 2.5 million men don’t have any close friends. It sucks. Loneliness hurts and is detrimental to our health!
A world of anxiety and suffering.