If you’re currently reading this, it’s most likely because you’re a college student who’s still struggling to make friends in college. Girl, let me just say, I’ve been where you are and in many ways I still am. You are not alone, and many of the people you see going out every weekend are in the same position as you. College is a time when we are supposed to meet new people and establish lifelong friendships, but it’s harder than it seems.
On top of the already challenging task of making friends in college, we now have the added difficulty of less social events and increased seclusion. So, how does one make friends in college during covid?
This might seem like an odd thing to start with, but if you want to make friends in college you have to be patient. Friendships don’t happen overnight, and true, genuine friendships can take months to years to become established.
You will meet a lot of people in college, but being patient and waiting for the right one’s is so important. This is something I’m still practicing in my own life. It’s hard when you go to a new place and meet people. I often want to compare new relationships with my established ones. When they don’t seem to “measure up” I think it’s not worth pursuing.
If you want to make friends you’re going to have to be patient and allow your new relationships to flourish. As a christian, I often include these people and relationships in my prayers. I ask God to give me patience to allow our friendship to grow, and time to pour into our relationship.
2. Let go of fear
Maybe it’s just me, but there are a lot of times I stop myself from asking a new friend to grab coffee or go study because I don’t want to bother them or get myself in a potentially awkward situation.
If you want to make friends in college you’re going to have to let go of this fear that things will be uncomfortable. The truth is they will be at first, but all good relationships start this way and to get past it you have to spend more time together.
3. Invite people to things already on the calendar
One of the biggest obstacles in the way of potential friendships for me is time. In order to combat that, I’ve started asking people to join me for things like church, a study date at a coffee house, time in the library, a quick lunch break, etc.
These are things I would already be doing, but now I’m inviting someone and allowing myself to build relationships while not having to carve out extra time in my busy schedule.
4. Give people a chance
I like to think of friendships in the same way as romantic relationships. Sometimes you need to give people a few “dates” before you write them off. It can take people a while to open up and sometimes nerves get in the way of forming good friendships.
I’m definitely more of the quiet type when you first meet me and rarely will speak up in large groups, but that doesn’t make me a bad friend. I like to keep that in mind when hanging with new people.
5. Join a club or bible study
One of the best places I’ve been able to meet people is through my small group. We still meet during covid and there’s even the option to meet via zoom. This is a super safe way to meet and form relationships with people who are similar to me. I’ve been able to connect to girls who are younger and older than me.
Small group settings can be a great way to build community without feeling overwhelmed and it’s relatively safe during covid. If you don’t know of anything already like this on your campus, maybe it’s time to start one! Invite a few girls to meet weekly for coffee or breakfast.
6. Be yourself
You will never meet the kind of friends you want if you aren’t being yourself. It’s challenging in college to want to change or agree with something you don’t just to feel like you belong. Brene Brown, in her book The Gifts of Imperfections suggest approaching friendships with the goal of authenticity instead of the goal of approval or acceptance.
Praying over friendships is something I do at least weekly. I pray daily for all sorts of things, but friendships are usually at the top of my list. It’s human to want good relationships and the best person to ask is God. I pray that He will bring kind-hearted, joyful, and gentle friends into my life. Girls who will bring me closer to the Lord, keep me true to myself, and always have a good time.
These are some of my top tips for how to make friends in college during covid! What have you been doing to meet friends in college?