As we get older and stop meeting people through extracurricular activities and in school, it can seem harder to make new friends. If you find that you're struggling to make bonds with people, you might want to consider some of the best ways to make friends, according to science. There are plenty of studies that show how people make friends and what others respond to when it comes to forming strong relationships, and knowing these facts can help make finding your new BFF that much easier.
"Whether we like it or not, it can become harder to belong to a friendship relationship for different reasons, as you grow older," says psychotherapist Hazel Stewart-Hyslop over email. "People change as life changes, and forming new friendship can be harder. This might be due to marriage and family life, careers, moving locations, etc. To form friendship, there has to be a willingness and openness to engage and accept each other."
It might sound overwhelming at first, but in addition to being friendly and authentic, there are a number of things you can do to increase your chances of making new friends. Here are 11 of the best ways to make and maintain strong friendships, according to science.