Finding friends isn’t that hard when you’re relaxed, honest and open. Even though the German language is not easy, as a student you are very fortunate — because German students often speak English.
If you are new to a country, you often have no friends at the beginning and feel lonely. It is therefore all the more important to have the courage to mix with people, participate in joint activities and visit interesting places.
Find Friends: How to find friends in Germany
If you don’t study in your hometown or are not doing your apprenticeship, it’s not always easy: from one day to the next you’re in a completely new environment, you have to look for an apartment, get to know your university or work colleagues, maybe you’re looking for a side job… and build up a new circle of friends. Not so easy, huh? But don’t worry, it’s easy with our tips!
How to meet new people
Getting to know new people is the easiest step for many. But sometimes it can be difficult: for example, because you don’t like to go out for a party or because you have hobbies that you do not like to do on your own.
One option is that you just have to find something that makes sense to you – doing sports, for example. Maybe you don’t feel like it at all, but other people feel the same way. A first starting point has already been found!
And if you talk about your activities with someone in your course and then never go back to sports again, but rather drink a beer together? you have already reached your goal!
How do I know if the other person is interested in friendship?
In principle, you will quickly notice this by whether the other one “moves along” or not. Usually, the other person will also make a suggestion about what to do. If the initiative always comes from you, there is probably no interest in intensifying the contact. Which is not bad – there are so many other people! And it doesn’t always fit for both sides. So just relax!
How to open up to the outside world
There is only one thing to consider when getting to know people and opening oneself: Find the Golden Way! In concrete terms, this means that you don’t tell your new friends about your digestive problems or your difficult childhood. But you don’t say “Ah… okay…” all the time to everything your counterpart says, without revealing anything about you. It’s not that hard, is it?
No kidding: You should just find a good mix of listening and telling. Show that you are interested in what your new friends like, what they do and what moves them. But also tell something about yourself – best of all, you start with harmless experiences, report about your hobbies… very private topics you leave out for the time being. Growing interpersonal relationships and the important thing is that you develop a sense of where you are standing with your companion. Which brings us to the next point!
Too much thinking is only bad… sometimes
Don’t think about where you can get “friends”. Finding friends is not like shopping – you can easily find them when you actively go through life. So be active, do something, but not with the aim of making friends. It’s just stressful for you – and maybe your counterpart will notice it and be more tense at the same time. So just be easy, and you’ll find it!
The first contact is made – and now?
As I have just said, friendship takes time to develop. You have to get a feeling for who the other person is and how he or she ticks. So you’ll slowly find out what you have in common, where you’re very different, what you can talk about with each other and what you can’t talk about.
You don’t have to think that you have to share everything just because you’re friends. Of course there are such friendships. But as a rule, we only share a part of our lives with all people. And that’s okay, too.
Now you might want to intensify the contact – but how do you do that? The problem: there is actually no Golden Rule for this. It is a sense of the right moment, for example, to suggest that you do something together, have a coffee, go to a certain celebration or visit a museum.
What is exactly the right thing to do at a certain point in time can never be answered for all people. It always depends on where you met someone, what you are interested in and what the dynamics between you are.
Generally speaking, if you want it to develop a closer friendship, you should invite your friends to your home at some point. When you visit each other at home, this is always a sign that it is a closer relationship or that you want it to develop.
And the most valuable advice:
…. even if you may find it a bit difficult to open up and find the right wavelength, try to participate in many activities in your student community!
Go to parties together, go on a trip, cook together or do the simple things together, e. g. learn and exercise.
Shortlist: Do’s and Dont’s when getting to know each other
Most important tips for a successful conversation with friends
As said before, the ultimate rules for making friends do not exist. It’s always about getting involved with the other person a little bit and looking at what’s right for you. Empathy and intuition are therefore the most important tools of the game!
Nevertheless, here is a brief overview of the most important dos and don’ ts in terms of “finding friends”:
- Don’t uncover your darkest secrets. Opening up is part of making friends, yes. But don’t overdo it at the beginning.
- Don’t ask intimate questions at the beginning.
- Be an attentive listener. Look at your friends as they speak and react to what they say!
- Don’t just talk about you, talk about what your counterpart says.
- Be attentive to body language – try to understand what moves and affects the other person, even if he does not say it. This way you can better understand your counterpart.
If you take these 5 tips with a heart and don’t hassle yourself looking for friends, but rather take it easy and relaxed, you will surely get to know new people quickly!
No interrogation, please.
A new acquaintance is not an interrogation room and the acquaintance is not a suspect. Nothing is as deadly as to harass someone with private questions at the first or second meeting. Such questions include, for example, the following:
- Do you want kids? Why (not)?
- Do you have a boyfriend/girlfriend?
- How long have you been single? Why?
If your counterpart wants to tell you something about this, he or she will do that. But not necessarily at the first meeting. In particular, the Why questions may cause the other person great embarrassment, because they seem to have to justify themselves to someone whom they hardly know.
Even if you may ask out of curiosity – this is really unpleasant for your counterpart. You may also find this hint a little strange – but unfortunately, this is actually a common mistake.