How To Win Friends And Influence People classic book by Dale CarnegieThis section is based on the famous Dale Carnegie book, although I’m not going to give you the advice from his book because it is outdated when you consider the tremendous changes in society over the last 30 years, especially since the feminist revolution.

So many people who reach 30+ complain that all their friends are married or in long term relationships. And so they do not have anyone to hang out with or go out to party with. This leads to them exploring things like speed dating and other types of matchmaking services in an attempt to expand their social circle.

The fundamental thing that bonds people together is common interest. And in most cases you are friends with people who are more like you than unlike you. So this is where you would start to explore how to make new friends. What you have to start doing is to explore friendships with people based on the activities you participate in. So for example of you are a gym freak, and you spend 4 or more days per week at your local gym, it’s a good idea for you to start conversations with people who hang out at your gym. From there you can start building rapport over time.

Now how do you actually form friendships, especially if you have been single, for a long time. You simply start inviting people to join you out on other activities. You do not have to anything complicated but say for example you are having a braai at your place. This is the perfect time and place to invite new friends who can meet each other or existing friends. You have to remember that it does take some effort to get to know people. So you must be sure to make the barriers of entry as low as possible. So don’t even suggest a bring-n-braai instead buy everything and ask them to bring along their favourite drink.

One guy had this crazy way of making friends with women where he would invite them all out for drinks. They end up competing for his attention and this very healthy kind of attention is what creates rapport between people.

From Dale Carnergie here’s a few more specific tips:

Ways to Make People Like You:

  • Become genuinely interested in other people and smile
  • Remember that a man’s name is to him the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”
  • Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
  • Talk in the terms of the other person’s interest.
  • Make the other person feel important and do it sincerely.

Something else I like to do for my friends is to send them information about things they are interested in via email. And whenever I meet up with them we start sharing stories about what’s happened in our lives. I ensure that we speak more about what’s happened in their lives than my own. It’s impossible not to talk about myself because inevitably they will ask me the same questions I’ve asked them. You can also use websites like Facebook to connect with old friends and new ones.