Five Steps Young Adults Can Take to Manage Loneliness Post-College in NYC
It is no secret that the New York City Metro area has a reputation as being one of the most fast-paced and action-filled cities in the world. Many young people face challenges in establishing friendships. They may attend many social events. However, they still feel lonely at the end of the day. Young adults often face the additional challenge of adapting to a less predictable social environment than they may have experienced in college. Social groups may also lack continuity. New acquaintances may rarely be seen again. Indeed, NYC is in many ways the polar opposite of a contained campus community. However, these five strategies can help you establish friendships in NYC.
- Think Quality Not Quantity
With an abundance of social opportunities for young adults, one can become overwhelmed by meeting new people. However, this may leave little opportunity to form quality friendships. It may be tempting to attend five new crowded events that are well publicized and in your neighborhood. However, doing so this may not be what is in your best long-term interest. The benefits of seeking out activities and social groups with regular meetings, continuity among members, and opportunities for forming deeper friendships often outweigh the difficulties inherent in finding such groups.
- Do What you Like.
This city offers many activities through which it is possible o meet young people. Many of my clients complain that they had to leave behind their favorite activities such as sports and the arts after they move to the city. However, if one looks hard enough, he or she can find his or her favorite activities right here in the city. These groups can include meetups, young adult religious groups, and even weekend long excursions with other young adults. All of these activities offer the opportunity to become familiar with others who have similar interests. This can ultimately create meaningful and lasting friendships.
3. Join Other Young Professionals
Many young adults are entering a professional fields for the first time. This can create challenges as well as a desire to meet others going through similar professional experiences. Therefore, finding a professional group that meets frequently to learn about others in the profession is a potentially rewarding opportunity. Examples could include the NASW for social workers, or a legal networking meetup for young attorneys.
4. Make Arrangements in Advance
Unlike college, were it is easy to see friends casually and spontaneously, most young adults in the New York Metro Area have busy schedules and long commutes. Therefore, it is often necessary to plan meetings with potential friends weeks in advance. Creating a regular schedule in which one maintains regular social appointments is critical for developing a consistent and supportive group of friends.
5. Have Patience
It can take many months and sometimes years to establish friendships in the New York Metro area. The city is huge, with lots of different opportunities to meet others, so if it does not happen right away, don’t give up, but continue to think about strategies you can develop to meet other like minded individuals.