Saturday, November 9, 2013

Branching Out

I've written a few times before about the challenge of making new friends in my (no longer all that) new city. And I've been thinking about that a lot lately.

I'm good in one on one situations, and have definitely made friends in the area - people who I get dinner with on occasion, or these days go for walk with, but most of those have been people I've met through work so it's not reaallly branching out.

I realized that when I get invited to do things beyond a one on one group my default answer is to say no. This isn't the case (usually) when it's a close friend doing the inviting. Usually in those circumstances I'll go, because I usually have at least met some of the other people involved. In fact, I've had several friends tell me that they never question including me with a group as I can adapt no matter who the audience is. Which is true when I stop and think about it.

But I guess I don't stop and think about it often since I'm busy turning down those invites.

Anyway, lately I've been doing the opposite. Going out with new groups of people even when my instincts tell me I should just stay home.

On Halloween I was invited to a gathering at a friend of a friend's in my neighborhood. A few people were getting together to hand out candy at one house and since I don't get trick or treaters on my street my friend thought I might want to come. She invites me to things all of the time and I pretty much always don't go, and I realized I needed to stop saying no.

So I went and had good conversation, saw cute kiddos in costumes, ate yummy food and all around had a fun evening.

Fast forward to tonight. A friend from work invited me to book club at her house. With all of the reading I do I've never actually been in a book club which is surprising. I was free tonight and I decided that I should go, even though I admit I was a bit unsure. And, while there were a few awkward moments here and there, overall it was a fun time and I ended up staying a lot longer that I expected. It's a newly forming book club - this was only the second meeting - and most of the girls already knew each other, but my friend only knew one other person and I only knew her but... by the end of the night we were all hugging goodbye and making plans for next time.

Yay for branching out!

1 comment:

  1. Oh... I can completely relate! I am a one-on-one kinda person. I do not do well in groups or crowds- I end up getting anxious and make myself sick. But people do not take the time to understand that not everyone likes groups or can handle groups- so even many of my closest friends just stop asking me to ANYTHING- even the one-on-one things. It still hurts sometimes, but I am used to it, and dive into projects and writing. :) I am happy to see you have been able to branch out and it worked out successfully! Maybe I should try it again too. Who knows? This time might be different. :)