After you successfully settled in your new home, unpacked all the boxes, you start realising that there is not a person you could call and invite for a cup or tea. Then a fear of loneliness and social isolation shows up and you have no idea how to deal with it. It might help you to treat it as a phase, but you should consider your first steps to change this situation. Making friends can’t happen overnight, but the sooner you start socializing, the sooner you begin enjoying living in your new country. Each friendship takes time to develop. It is a challenge which you must face along with all other difficulties adjusting a new way of life. Having a job there will make these things easier, but there is no reason to panic if you are still looking for one. The point is that it lets you have more free time to join a club, take a course, explore the area, focus on something you have always wanted to do and you haven’t had time so far. You might be discouraged by the fact that all people already have their friends but the fact is that most people like making new friendships.
Anyway you must make a strategy and set your goals. Firstly, research the ways how to get involved in the local community. You can probably find them online, joined by the groups who share the same interests, whether it is cycling, and dancing, cooking, some sport or music fans. It is a great starting point to be among people who are interested in the same things as you.
In case you already have a job there, you will have a good chance to socialize with your work peers. Most people at work are act welcoming after meeting a new colleague. That comes from the fact that everybody is familiar with the feeling of the first days at a new working place. They will make an effort to approach you in a friendly way so it is your ideal chance to invite them for a coffee break, organize a barbecue at the weekend at your place or ask them for a favour to go hiking with you in their spare time to be your guides. You will be surprised how much people love being somebody’s hosts explaining culture and history of their hometown. Take the initiative in making social plans with your peers. At least it will be a great opportunity to you to get to know them better and fit in your new working place easier.
Joining a sport club, or even just spending time in a gym a few times a week is also a great idea. It will not only get you in shape, but also increase your opportunities to start chatting with somebody. You may find someone like minded in a place least expected to be for long lasting friendship.
A further method could be voluntary work in a number of charities in any destination. A city guide book is here to help you or you can search an online tour of your area. That way you contribute to a good cause and the locals will surely appreciate it. Another plus for you!
Here is another tip, especially for the ones who are used to going out and enjoy a busy night life. Local pubs are the places where there are always friendly people and in a short time you will feel a greater sense of belonging. It won’t be long before any conversation starts. To keep in touch, exchange your phones and here you are! You have accomplished it nice and easy! Just don’t wait for them to text you first, make a move and contact them, it’s worth trying. Not all of them will become your close friends, but you can make some long- lasting good relationship with most of them.
Language can be another obstacle for you, especially if it completely differs from your own. In that case the first thing is attending the language course or taking some private classes. It is another chance to meet a lot of people, especially the ones in similar situation who are trying to adopt a new culture. Supposing that you already thought about it in advance to be well prepared for your new living and learnt good enough to communicate at work or with your new neighbours, bear in mind that each language sounds a little different depending of a region. So, listen carefully while people are talking and try picking up their accent. Even if you are not as successful in copying their talk as you want to be, they will find your attempts to fit in highly respectful and cute. Whenever you ask them to help you with a word or a phrase, they will be pleased to do it because you care for their dialect. So, it is another charming way to approach the locals and become friends with them.
Whenever you meet someone for the first time, keep your mind open and do not judge people too fast. Focus on things which you might have in common instead of noticing the differences between you. Spending time with them you may be introduced to their friends or someone they know. The more people you get to know, the better the chance to find some of them who you really like. If you don’t start talking to someone easily, you are shy and introverted, find some other ways to let them know you are interested in being their friend. It could be your behaviour, your gestures, and the way you look or act. Anyway, all of that takes time, and don’t be discouraged if someone lets you down. Be optimistic and cheerful and look on the bride side of your new life. Not many people get a chance to move abroad and so many of them would like to. However, having an optimistic and positive attitude will get you wherever you want in life.