For the Introverts—How to Make Friends in College When You’re Shy
Making the most out of your college experience can be challenging if you are an introvert. It can be difficult to put yourself out there and jump into new social situations. However, you will be doing yourself a disservice if you do not make the effort to connect with others in your campus community. Here are three ways to make friends in college even if you are shy.
According to Transformations Treatment Center, changing the way you think and dismissing negative thoughts, worst-case scenarios, and not thinking about what others think of you can help combat your social anxiety. The first step in making these important social connections is to be intentional about talking to other people. Sometimes all it takes is the courage to make the first step in initiating personal interaction with others. Even just talking a little bit with people can help. Just take out your headphones, smile, and compliment others when you pass by. These kinds of small interactions can often help start a new friendship.
A college campus is flush with an abundance of opportunities to get involved, making this an easy way to meet new people and to expand your social circle. Carthage College suggests checking with your college activities association and picking out a club or two that interests you. Not only will this get you out and about, but it will naturally connect you with people with similar interests. This increases the likelihood that you will relate to these people and that friendships will naturally evolve.
You cannot expect to meet people if you are holed up in your own dorm room or your apartment all the time. In order to make new friends, it is important that you put yourself in situations where you are more likely to meet new people. Hanging around on campus is an easy way to make it more likely that you will meet others. Instead of studying at home, consider taking your books to the library. Or make it a habit to grab lunch a few times per week on campus. You will likely find that social interactions become more plentiful once you naturally surround yourself with like-minded students.
While these steps may require that you step outside of your comfort zone, the efforts will be well worth it. You will enjoy your time at college more if you are able to connect with others and develop friendships that will last a lifetime.
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