We would think that moving away into student accommodation, a heavy workload, or a brand-new lifestyle would be the most concerning things when starting varsity. However, many students cite making friends at university as one of the biggest causes of anxiety.
This period of your life can be tricky as you strike out on your own with far less input from your family and a bunch of new decisions to make. Being accepted socially is a big deal at this age too – so you’ve got your work cut out.
Making friends at university
Most of us are not that outgoing, gregarious person who seems to draw others to them with a magnetic personality and unrivalled charm. We’re probably a little shy and are likely to wait for others to make the first move.
What can we do to make friends without creating a host of social anxiety issues in our overworked brain?
They say that to make friends you need to be a friend, and this is a great place to start. Helping others to move their luggage or furniture, pointing them in the right direction (if you know the way!) and generally being available and willing to help is a brilliant way to get to know people. Introduce yourself, help out, and you’ll almost certainly make some friends along the way.
If there are social events or common areas, be present there. You will find that others are there for the exact same reason and will be more than happy to strike up a conversation and find some common ground.
Join Facebook groups
It may seem counterproductive to use social media to meet new people in real life, but it’s likely a safe space where strangers with common interests can get to learn more about each other. You can dip into the conversation when you choose to and strike up conversations at your own pace. That way, you will know a little more about these potential friends and aren’t starting from ground zero.
An open mind and a friendly face are the best ways to draw people to you if you’re trying to make friends in university.