Connor Miller seems to have cracked the code for being able to make friends as adults, outside the school and work setting.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on May 28, 2021. It has since been updated.
When we graduate from high school and are all set to go to college or join the workforce, we can't help but feel apprehensive about not being able to make friends. Leaving behind the comfort zone of the group of friends we made in high school to start again from scratch in a new environment can seem daunting, especially for an introvert. It may seem almost impossible to be able to make friends again. And yet, even the shyest of us manage to make friends after high school. When a person on the internet wondered about the same thing, this TikToker's advice is by far the best one.
TikTok user Connor Miller seems to have cracked the code for being able to make friends as adults, outside the school and work setting. It is simple and doable. In the video that has now gone viral, Miller states, "Show up somewhere regularly." He goes on to explain, "The reason you make friends in high school is because you see the same people every day. The reason that you make friends at work is because you see the same people every day. If you want to make friends as an adult, go to the same café every week, or go to a calligraphy class." The video has been viewed more than five million times and is now making rounds on other social media sites as well.
He even has a suitable solution for the introverts, "If you don't want to leave the house, you can just go to the same Twitch stream every day," Miller continued. "That's what I do and I've made friends there. If you are a familiar face in a place where people share your interests, you'll make friends." This tip is especially useful when it comes to the present situation, in the midst of a pandemic. As humans, we need that connection and we can easily forge those virtually as well. But when we are a vaccinated society, we can sign up for all those classes we wanted to and show up again and again. Before we know it, we would have made friends. Maybe for life.
Miller works as a community coordinator at Discord. Discord is an instant messaging and digital distribution platform designed for creating communities. So maybe he does know what he's talking about. If you can't take his word, then there has been a lot of research conducted about this problem that seems to persist in our society. One research, according to Business Insider, found that the most popular people in an apartment building were those who lived in the most highly-trafficked areas: the foot of the stairwells. This proximity helped them form friendships.
Similarly, another research was conducted to find out if the proximity between police trainees would lead to them form close bonds. When the 44 subjects of the study were asked to name their closest friends, they happened to choose those who fell closest to them in alphabetical order of their seating. The key factor was to keep seeing the same people on a regular basis. "Treat it like a gym. Keep going back and trying, and all of a sudden you'll find you're better at it," Katie Acheson, CEO of Youth Action, an organization that represents young people and youth workers told ABC Net.
Vera Eck, MFT, an Imago relationship therapist in Los Angeles told Refinery 29, "Humans are tribal and we need to make the effort to either find or create our own village." These tips may especially come in handy for the millennials who feel lonely and like they have no friends. A YouGov poll found that 30 percent of millennials feel lonely. This is the highest percentage of all the generations surveyed. It could just be the sign of the times and millennials may feel better with age or they can try showing up regularly to places.