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Luke.J Offline
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College how to make friends? - August 29th 2012, 10:18 PM

So bit of background information.
I had some friends about 2 years ago who started getting into things I wished not to concern myself with, so I moved away from them and long story short I have never had any real friends other than that, I say real friends I don't think that they were really real friends either but hopefully you get the picture they were doing bad things I left.

I have had aquaintances who I hung around with at school, but I like spend all my time at home and don;t go out except by myself and with family, which I don't particularly mind but it is a bit lonely.

Anway I am starting college on Monday and I was wondering if you and tips or ideas on how I can make a good impression and get some real friends, I don't really know why I haven't been able too, I see people walking around with all their friends and think why can't I do that.

Some otherthings that might be affecting are that I am a bit overwight I hope this wouldn't affect people wanting to be friends with buy there you go and I have a slight speech issue, I am quite often unclear when speaking and talk quite fast and stutter a lot.
Any suggestions/ideas are welcome.
Thank you in advance.
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Re: College how to make friends? - August 30th 2012, 01:01 AM

I don't see why the weight would be an issue - one of my best friends was well over the healthy weight range, yet she was one of the most popular girls I knew, due to her bubbly personality. The speech impairment may be the bigger issue - if people are having trouble understanding you, then it's going to be difficult to hold a meaningful conversation with them, which decreases your chances of developing meaningful friendships. Have you ever worked with a speech therapist? It might not be a bad idea to do so, both for the sake of your future friendships AND future career (where communication skills may be vital to your profession).

I am a lot like you, in that I'm content with being alone and doing my own thing the majority of the time. Like you said, though, it can become lonely after a while. My advice is to do what I did: force yourself to go to social events, even if you don't feel like it. I highly recommend you live with other college students, whether it's in a dorm or apartment - that way, you will be forced to interact with other people, and you'll be "in the loop" about what's going on around campus. It takes practice, and it seems you are sorely out of practice. Just as you have made a choice to spend your free time at home, you now have to make a choice to put yourself out there and meet new people. Otherwise, old habits will most likely lead you down the same path you went down over the last two years.

Join clubs. Talk to the people around you in lectures/classes. Ask your roommates if they want to grab a bite to eat at the cafeteria. If you can, work part-time and chat with your co-workers. Get involved in study groups. Whenever an opportunity arises, go for it. It will take time, but you'll start to see some improvements as the months pass. Just keep at it! Show interest in your new acquaintances, and try to get to know them on a more personal level. Most won't be interested in return, but some will, and those are the friendships you want to spend the most time developing.

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Re: College how to make friends? - August 30th 2012, 06:35 AM

For the longest time, I was also content with spending my time alone. But, like you, I started to want real friends to hang out with when I did feel the need to go out and do something. Like Robin said, you just need to force yourself into attending social events. Is your college going to have any fun activities during your orientation? If they do, participate in them! It doesn't matter how silly they sound. By putting yourself out there and participating in the events, you'll be able to meet new people who will also be going to your school. Use the events as a time to get to know people. You can strike up a conversation about anything! It could be something as simple as asking what their major is, commenting on something you've noticed about them (ex. a band tshirt), or their thoughts on the event itself! Once the conversation starts flowing, it'll be easier to come up with conversation topics.

Also, get involved! I can't stress that enough. Join clubs that are focused on things you are genuinely interested in. You'll have the chance to meet people with similar interests to yours and you'll have a built-in conversation starter! If you're living on campus, try to meet people in your hall. Perhaps you could find some people to have a pick-up game with or grab a bite to eat with. Talk to people in your classes, as well. Even trying to form a study group for a tricky course will show people that you're interested in spending time with them.

Once you start, you have to keep pushing yourself to be social! It might be hard at first, which is perfectly normal. But, if you can manage to talk to even one new person a day, you'll find that it gets easier with time.

I hope this helped!

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Re: College how to make friends? - August 30th 2012, 09:33 PM

Hey Luke. I think we're pretty much in the same boat right now. I'm starting college in a couple of weeks

I think the best thing is for you to try and be generally friendly. Take part in class discussions, try and initiate conversations with people and attend the freshers week parties (if they have them where your studying). Also, do they do an enrichment programme where you're going? I know that mine does and we have the opportunity to learn first aid, take part in sports, do a language etc. This might be something for you to consider.

An easy way to break the ice is to simply sit down next to someone who looks equally as lost as you, before introducing yourself. I'm sure they'll be relieved to have someone to talk to and will generally be a lot more open.

Ooo, and study groups. After the first few weeks, ask someone if they fancied studying during their free with a few friends. Great way to meet new people.

Hope it goes well!

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Re: College how to make friends? - August 30th 2012, 09:44 PM

Thank you both so much for the adivce I will definately take it in and try to impliment it on Monday when i start.
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