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Friend-Making 101 - The Uni Special

You probably looked at the title of this article and thought ‘how annoying, an article which claims to help people make friends. That's so stupid. I know how to make friends, I’m an ADULT for goodness’ sake.’ You're probably right and know how to make friends perfectly fine (although that bit about being an adult, oh please, don’t be so ridiculous). But if you **don't** know how to make friends, or are worried about making friends at uni (if you're about to start uni this September then you definitely are a little bit worried even if you say you're not, because absolutely everyone worries about this, even the greatest friend-maker in the world herself, Friendly McFrienderson, who you probably already know 'cos she's friends with everyone), then you should keep reading. You should also keep reading if you don't actually have any friends! Seriously, though, if this is you, you probably need to do much more drastic things than read this article. Like wash. And use deodorant. B.O. problems aside, you should come with me on this magical friendly carpet ride if you want to make heaps of new mates. I am the friend-making genie and I am here to help.

**Interlude to consider how weird the word 'friend' is after reading it so many times in such a condensed piece of text**


Let's begin by asking (making) some (lots of) simple (complex) questions (demands).

1. The super-super-pre-friend-making TIP:

Before you even GET to uni, you can totally make some weak relationships with the people who you'll be sharing your flat/halls/house/sports teams/toe-nail clippers with. And you know what they say, a weak relationship always leads to a strong one. Sometimes. Maybe. Approximately 50% of the time. So for all you optimists out there, the glass is definitely half full here! Lots of Uni halls of residences have Facebook pages that you can put hilarious and witty posts on so everyone will think you are a-w-e-s-o-m-e, for example you can post about where you might be staying/what you're looking forward to most about moving in:

'I'm in *insert flat number and halls of residence here* and I've just bought 50 shot glasses WOOP! Who's with me?! Let's get drunk LOL' or words to that effect. When people see a post like this, they'll think you're a total catch and immediately want to spend time with you and your 50 shot glasses. As your detective skills have probably already told you, all students like drinking so this is an easy way to find out who has this in common with you (absolutely everyone).

2. Buy cool kitchen utensils

Some people say that money can't buy friendship. In this instance they are wrong. Buying nifty kitchen stuff is actually a great talking point for those first few days of dinner times when you're getting to know people and don't really feel that comfortable discussing the death of your hamster yet. You can also earn friend points by offering to lend this well good equipment to other's in your flat. "Wow, Chris, this bright green spatula with googly eyes on top is so cool and funny! Where did you get it?!"

"Well actually, Sarah, it's funny you should say that, because I was reading this really hilarious article....." etc, etc. Conversation flowing? Tick. New pals? Tick.

3. Buy a door stop

Uni halls of residence doors tend to be those annoying fire doors *yawn* so they're really heavy and slam shut all the time, which can be quite deceptive and give off the impression that your blood runs thick with rage and solitude is your ultimate desire. But obviously, that's not you ‘cos you're all about making new friends at the moment, so you need to do something about that. By keeping your door open at all times, it literally forces people walking past your room into some sort of conversation with you, because no one wants to appear rude in the first few weeks of uni. If, after a few weeks, you start to realise there might be a select one or two individuals that you just can't bear to hear utter another boring breath about the meaning of life, then don't panic! The door stop is a completely non-permanent feature. But, I hear you cry, what about the people I want to speak to?! Well, call me crazy, but you can easily find out what they're up to by simply knocking on their door! Wow, who knew making friends could be so easy.

4. Make a flat WhatsApp group

Oh-em-gee, platform for continuous banter and planning fun stuff! If you're a bit nervy in real life this is really good ‘cos you can pre-plan funny stuff to say and everyone will think you are the cats pajamas. Then you won't be as nervous anymore and you can gradually feel comfortable enough to bring your innate wit to real life situations. Oooh, friend.

4. SO. MANY. ACTIVITIES.

In reference to the previous tip, you should try and plan some super fun flat activities to do to embark on your beautiful journey into everlasting friendship. Eating is always a good one. Pub quizzes, also excellent. Or, if you're feeling really adventurous, why not try a spot of kayaking?!* It's good for building strong team bonds and weeding out the weaker individuals of the pack. Just kidding, friendship shouldn't really be based on physical prowess (unless you really like kayaking because let's face it, you don't want to be teaming up with someone with zero upper arm strength and a tendency to give up quickly).

*kyaking is probably a bit out there. Most University towns won't have kyaking facilities. Don't worry too much if you can't actually go kyaking. You could always replace this with cinema trips.

5. Of COURSE we're mates! (The course-mate tip)

I know you've always dreaaamed of saying the sentence 'just going for drinks with some course mates' (who hasn't, right?!), and if you follow this tip you can make some dreams come true! It's always nice to have some pals who are doing the same course as you so you can bitch and moan about your deadlines in a completely non-judgmental and safe environment. Now you've got your flat friends and your course mates, you can continue to increase those lovely warm fuzzy friendly feelings (not THOSE kinds of feelings. But that's allowed too!), and you'll really be on the road to friendship success.

n.b. mixing these two groups results in a massive mega friendship supernova i.e. one great huge....

6. PAAAAARTY

What better way to meet new people?! There just hasn’t been and never will be in the history of everything ever. Examples of times when having a party is a fantastic idea:

-always

-everyday

-all the time

Even the time in that film project X where those fun-lovin' American teens went slightly overboard and drove a car into a pool or something. That was still a good idea because everyone had a brilliant time. Live for the moment and deal with the consequences tomorrow. Also, remember to invite people in the flats next door/in your block to your party. That way, they can't complain about noise levels because they'll actually be creating them - everybody's a winner.

WARNING: this is NOT a comprehensive guide on how to stay out of trouble and not get kicked out of uni. Universities can and will kick people out for doing utterly ridiculous and stupid things in halls of residences and student housing. If you love doing ridiculous and stupid things, consider joining the circus.

If you follow these very straightforward steps, you’ll instantly become a friend magnet. So if you want meet the Patrick to your SpongeBob, the Thelma to your Louise, or the Ross, Chandler, Monica, Phoebe and Joey to your Rachel, then look no further, the answers all lie here.
And remember; be yourself and keep doing you.

With these steps, making friends has never been so easy!

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