It can be intimidating to meet new people, but if you overcome those fears and look in the right places, you’ll enrich your personal life and advance your career.
Some people want to meet new people, but just don’t know where to find them.
It could be for new friendships, business networks, or romantic relationships. They have the desire and personality, but can’t find the places where others want to connect long-term.
For others like me, meeting new people is just plain scary. We know we need to do it, but we freeze up at the thought of that introduction.
If we let our fears and obstacles get in the way, we miss out on the potential of really great friendships or beneficial business opportunities.
What’s holding you back may be the thought that meeting new people requires you to go to a bar or party and introducing yourself to complete strangers, hoping you have something in common.
7 Ways To Meet New People
But meeting people is a lot easier than you might expect. There are several types of groups that form where it’s the norm to meet new people and develop relationships. So if everyone’s doing it, you don’t feel awkward.
Where do you find these new people and groups? Here are some of the most common places:
1. Find a Local in Interest Group
You can go online to find a ton of local groups that meet up around a common interest.
Head over to meetup.com.
Here, you can browse your city and find organized groups that meet up in different places throughout the week. These groups meet together over various interests, including hiking, crafting, photography, book clubs, business, tech… almost anything you can think of.
All you have to do is create a free account and RSVP to the event. Then show up and meet new people doing something you all enjoy.
2. Join a Local Sports Leagues
If you’re into sports but aren’t great at talking, this is the perfect place for you.
Most cities have sports teams and tournaments that you can sign up for, and they’re usually ongoing. There are leagues for basketball, softball, volleyball, hockey, even dodgeball.
You can even check out your local gym – they usually have various teams and tournaments that you can sign up for as well.
The great thing about sports is that you just have to introduce yourself, and the rest of the time is mostly non-verbal. You play with other people and gradually build trust through the sport.
3. Take a Class for a Hobby You Want to Learn
There are things you’ve always wanted to learn how to do. Why not meet new people while you’re at it?
You can take one-time or ongoing classes in a lot of different interest fields, such as cooking, painting, martial arts, dance, sculpting, languages, and so many others.
You can head to groupon.com and find some great deals on classes in your area.
4. Business Networking Groups
If you’re looking to build relationships to advance your career or business, business networking groups are the best for that.
A group of people in different industries often meet together once a week or once a month. People have the chance to share about their business and refer each other to new business.
Search online for ones meeting in your area. It’s a great way to build solid partnerships and potentially get more customers and clients.
5. Attend Conferences You’re Interested In
Conferences can help you grow in your area of interest and form new partnerships.
You can find conferences for almost anything you’re interested in, from personal to business.
Conferences do take a little more effort to meet new people as it’s easy t blend in with the crowd. But if you attend one, build up the confidence to talk with the people you’re sitting next to before and after each session.
Since conferences typically last a couple days and are packed with sessions, you’ll be sitting next to new people constantly and are bound to meet someone you connect with or can work together with.
6. Volunteer for Something You Care About
Volunteering is wonderful for you own personal growth as well as meeting new friends.
Choose a cause or organization you really care about and look to see if they have volunteer opportunities in your area. Idealist.org is a great place to see which nonprofits in your area need volunteers.
There’s a certain camaraderie that comes when you’re serving people with people, and you get to meet new people who don’t just hold similar interests, but hold similar values as well.
7. Attend Church or Other Religious Activities
If you have any type of spiritual background, religious services and activities are a natural way to meet new people.
Since religion is a deeply held worldview, you’re more likely to make long-lasting relationships because of your similar beliefs.
Most churches or other places of worship will have activities outside of their main services, which provides a great way to meet new people in a more casual setting. They’ll often have midweek groups that meet up as well, so you can get to know people better.
Make an Intentional Goal to Meet New People
All these places are great ways to meet new people and form relationships. They could turn into lifelong friendships or beneficial business ventures.
But it doesn’t happen naturally. You have to take the first step in attending. That won’t happen naturally either.
Make it a goal to meet new people this year. Schedule it in your calendar. Try to attend one event a month, or even one every 3 months.
Unless you write it down and plan it out, it’ll never get done.
Meeting new people make be one of your resolutions this year, along with many others. But like this one, you might not be sure if you can accomplish it.
Read this article next to learn how to create goal for this new year that you’ll actually succeed in: