We are well into the new year so it’s time to take a crack at your resolutions if you haven’t already. I identified my resolutions for 2022 in a previous blog post. One of my resolutions was to expand my social network and make new friends. Many people call this “finding your tribe”!
What Does It Mean to “Find Your Tribe”
Finding your tribe to me means wanting to surround myself with people who have the same values – that doesn’t mean I want my network of friends to always agree with me. In fact, I think it’s beneficial to surround yourself with people who can provide a fresh outlook. But I would like to have people around me who share my values of treating people with respect, encouraging friends to fulfill their dreams, having generally equal give-and-take interactions and taking the time to maintain our friendship by connecting with me (and me with them) in person, or via text or social media.
Finding your tribe also means finding people who share some of your interests. If you want to maintain the cohesive bonds of friendship, you should have at least some similar interests.
Why Do You Need to Find Your Tribe?
We all need a sense of connection with others; that’s what life is all about? Time and time again, research has shown that people who have friendships live longer. Friends should be a source of support, fun, inspiration. If you don’t have friends who are providing these qualities, maybe it’s time to find your tribe? Perhaps you had a circle of friends you were close to, but they have fallen by the wayside since life has been known to get in the way. Sometimes friendships relax their bonds because one person moves away and it’s not as convenient to see each other. Perhaps one of your friends has pressing priorities e.g. looking after an ageing parent or having a baby dramatically changes one’s priorities and doesn’t leave much time for friendships. Perhaps your friend has recently got a demanding job that doesn’t leave them much leisure time? Whatever the case, it is rare not to lose a few friendships due to life circumstances.
How Do You Find Your Tribe?
Finding your tribe may not be easy; otherwise, we would have done it already, right? The first thing to do is identify what you are looking for in potential friendships. Many of us are looking for more shared experiences. It’s also helpful if we don’t have to travel so far to get together with our friends. Proximity breeds attraction, right? So you might want to identify some of your strongest interests and how you could share them with others. For example:
- If you love reading, you might want to join a local book club. Many Toronto Public Libraries operate their own free book clubs on a monthly basis. Joining a local book club means you will not only meet other bibliophiles, but these booklovers will live in your neighbourhood, which will increase your chances of developing friendships.
- Love golf? Join a women’s (or men’s) golf league. Having participated in a women’s golf league, I can vouch for the fact that they are great ways to network while having fun, getting some exercise and improving your game.
- Love to try new restaurants? Join a Meetup group that meets at different restaurants for brunch or dinner.
- Want to support social causes such as protecting the environment or helping low-income peop9le? There are many volunteer groups that will ensure you meet people who are interested in the same goals that you are.
- Love yoga? Sign up for yoga classes and meet other people who share your passion. Don’t just practice yoga at home like I do lol.
- Love to get outside? Join a walking group. There are several walking groups on Meetup who get together every week, walk several kilometres while exploring different neighbourhoods.
- Want to improve your culinary skills? Take a cooking class to learn to cook your favourite cuisine. You’ll be sure to meet new people and who knows, you may continue your friendships outside of the class.
- Have you been suppressing your artistic talents? Join art classes at your local Michael’s arts & crafts store. (This is something that is on my to-do list!)
Joining Facebook groups that are based on your common interests is also a good way to meet other like-minded people. Of course, the ultimate goal is to meet those people in person!
Make Time for Friendships
How much time do you have to devote to friendships? If you find yourself responding, “Not much” to that question, you might have to rejuggle your priorities. Take stock of how much time you spend watching TV. If you spend many of your nights watching Netflix (*puts hand up), replace one of those TV nights with a Meetup group or yoga class or whatever tickles your fancy! You might just meet some members of your tribe!
Please let me know in the comment section how you found your tribe.