I moved to Los Angeles on a whim this past August. I didn’t really know anyone here. I only knew one person, my roommate, who I knew from my ancient past (re: high school). I was working a couple of freelance jobs from home and was constantly plagued by the thought “How do you make friends as an adult when you work from home?” I could try to chat up strangers at the coffee shop or at bars or concerts, but I’m not bold enough to follow through on building relationships from random conversations with people I meet. So I did what any self-respecting, risk-averse person would do… I surfed Craigslist to find a band to join.
Most of the bands who post on Craigslist looking to find new bandmates are heavy-metal hair bands where all the members are 40-something men. That just wasn’t my jam. I scrolled through pages and pages of Craigslist for a few days before finding a post for this band called Youth On Soda. I thought their name was a bit odd and that their sound was difficult to decipher from their show’s live recordings. But, I didn’t have anything to lose at that point. I contacted the band and auditioned a few days later.
Well, I discovered that their sound is actually rad, and the name has grown on me. It’s been 5 months, 2 lineup changes, and 1 record later (which will debut sometime in May). Ori, the lead singer, is an eccentric, loud, and lovely Brit from the old country. Jared, the newest addition to the band and our drummer, is a hip, stylish, and loveable California native. Through our mutual love and respect for loud punk rock and noise, we soon became close friends. Then, a quick domino effect took place and I began to meet and become friends with people at shows and the friends of my bandmates.
So, how do you make friends as an adult? There isn’t really a clear cut answer, but I would say that joining an activity based club/group/sport is a good place to start. For me, joining a band meant doing what I love – playing music – while meeting and hanging out with new people who share a similar interest to me. From there it has grown into a plethora of friendships, and the opportunity to make cool music with interesting people. Joining something where you have built-in common interests and are already working towards a common goal is a good foundation for building friendships. Think about it. College and high school are both just places that thrust a bunch of people with common experiences and interests into situations where they’re forced to interact with each other. As a result, you organically build relationships with people. This is a similar way to make those organic connections.