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Inspiration for living a luxuriously and balanced life

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Being Social & Friendships in the Resilientista Years


The gals of Sex and the City are a great representation of the ease in which friendships are made in our 30s. The opportunities for social outings with other women seemed limitless and friendships were easily made. Why does that seem to change as we get into our late 40s and 50s? Is it age or is it something else?

I pondered this question recently, and thought about my own situation; at first glance it was easy to paint it as an age thing. But with further thought, I believe it's more of a life stage thing, and not being able to make friends after 50 really is a limiting believe. There is no friendship cut off age and as life changes (think geographic moves, divorce or loss of spouse/partner, illness, semi/retirement, empty nester etc.) or, current friends no longer offer the support and encouragement that makes a friendship, many people find themselves needing or wanting to make new friends.

Most notably when I found myself with unexpected free time on my hands and reached out to my gal friends for an impromptu gals nite. While everyone was excited about the idea and so wanted to attend - most already had other commitments for that evening. What I learned is that impromptu may not work the way it once did - as many have spouses, children, grandchildren; others are back in the dating scene or already filling their weekends way ahead of time (one friend in particular is booked every weekend past Labour Day!). 

Does this mean that social activities as your life stage changes is limited to mostly family or solo activities? ABSOLUTELY NOT! ~ one only has to click through Instagram to see women in their late 40s, 50s and beyond actively having amazing social lives with their gal (and even male) pals.

Here are 8 ideas to start cultivating new friendships:

1) Step outside your front door: this may seem like a given, but you will not meet new people unless you get out your front door.

2) Give Back : volunteering is a great way to help others, feel a sense of belonging to a community and meeting new people.

3) Make Friends with Yourself : take yourself out on dates, and outings, get to know what you enjoy (and equally important what you don't like) doing. When you are your own friend, you are exuding an air of happiness, confidence, and love; and that will be the friends you will attract.

4) Take a class: It doesn't matter what the class is - so long as it's something you enjoy. You will already have one thing in common with your classmates. So sign up for that pottery, yoga, sewing, spin etc. class.

5) Travel with a Tour Group: If you enjoy travelling but all your friends are busy or you have no one to travel with, don't let that enjoyment go. Travelling with a tour group, offers the feeling of traveling with someone as well as the opportunity to meet new people who may turn into a new friend.

6) Reconnect with Friends: Sometimes friends drift because of life circumstances. If there is a friend you really enjoyed doing things with reach out to them, who knows you may be able to pick up where you left off or may have an amazing new friendship. If it doesn't go beyond the initial contact - that's ok too!

7) Create a Social Routine: Especially if you work from home, are (semi/) retired, that gets you out of the house. Once or twice a week - have coffee at a particular cafe; go for a walk; or meet friends after after work.

8) Use Technology : Whether you find yourself in a new city or your life stage has changed  MeetUp.com  is a great way to meet new people with common interests.


Would love for you to share in the comments 
your experiences and ideas for making new friends in the Resilientista Years..

image credits: 1) Google Images 2)Diamond

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6 comments:

  1. Well said! My problem is that I was raised as an Army brat. We moved all over when I was growing up. Once we stopped, I had to adapt to living in one place beyond 2-3 years - which I didn't do very well. I was accustomed to moving and not creating meaningful friendships. Those I made only lasted as long as letter-writing lasted. A handful of years. I have many "friends" but honestly? The connection, while nice, isn't as in-depth as what you're talking about. I know other people have long-term friendships with women they've known for years. Since I don't really share easily, I can't see myself doing anything like that. I hated meeting in groups, be it baby showers, Tupperware parties or whatnot. I guess that is why things like this are a foreign concept! I have Alpha Hubby - he actually is it all - best friend, best supporter, best confidant, etc.

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  2. I have recently started up a lunch club - we are called Exclusive Ladies Lunch Club, and have a club page on Facebook. We have over 70 members, some interstate, some on the opposite side of the world. Even though we are only just about to have our second lunch, it shows that there is a definite need for ladies who have the time for a weekday lunch and natter, to be able to get together, even if its only once in a while. The plan is that eventually we will have sub-clubs internationally, who get together for lunch, music, theater, galleries etc..

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    1. Ruth ... that sounds amazing and yes I agree as women step into the next chapter of life - connecting with other women is food for the soul!!

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  3. Dearest Celia,
    Well it is never easy for maintaining an in-depth close friendship.
    Either work or family is demanding too much time.
    Also as I notice we are aging, even on FB and other Social Media outlets, our age group is veering off into a different direction. ALL they post or write about is their Grandchildren...
    Bragging and adoring their little Princesses (less about Princes...) in a way that at times looks unhealthy. What do those little ones grow into?
    We never got that much attention as we did grow up, that's for sure!
    Over the decades I've been able to connect with my dear friends and most of them are in my life for several decades.
    But on the other hand it is also different with an aging husband as his needs for certain activity is less.
    As for me personally, we have a weekly lunch with a dear Church friend but with my dietary restrictions I end up mostly eating just a salad and even bringing my own healthy dressing for that. Still, there is the positive connection and friendship we exchange but it is a bit tailored to age and situation.
    What I always loved most when still living in The Netherlands, were those impromptu visits where you chat over a good cup of coffee or tea. Very intimate and oh so rewarding for the soul.
    Sending you big hugs from across the miles and I know we both would love to do such impromptu coffee/tea visits if the distance was not diluting this!
    Mariette

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    1. Dearest Mariette ... so blessed that we did get to have a face to face meeting and sharing some wonderful memories. If only we lived closer MOST DEFINITELY we would make regular coffee/tea visits... Think of both often <3

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