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Forget About the Bar Scene…

April 12, 2008
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Picking up someone in a bar is down near impossible for most people. I was thinking about writing ways to get past that icy stare, a table of snickering girls, flat out rejection, and other roadblocks to meeting your next date at the bar…Then I realized there was a much more effective technique in meeting someone new: Networking.

So forget about bars and clubs and unlikely chance romantic encounters at a laundromat. Start learning about how to network. You need to start building as large of a circle of friends as you can handle. If you’re not meeting new people from your friends, it means you need to make more friends.

The hardest part is building that new network of friends. Here are some places you can start meeting more people who start to naturally expand your circle of friends.

At Work: If you work for a big company, start socializing with people in different departments or do other jobs that the people you normally hang out with. If you don’t really have a job where you can socialize with others, consider getting a part-time job at a restaurant or retail store. Soon you’ll have new friends to hang out with after work. They’ll introduce you to other friends.

At Schools: If you go to a university, you can meet people just by joining the student union or a club that has similiar interests as you. If you’ve long graduated, you can still consider taking classes at a community college or attending a workshop that interests you.

At Churches:If you go to church, chances are you are missing out on many opportunities to meet and network with people. Read your church bulletin for different weekly activities you can attend. See if there are any groups you can join. Make it a point to introduce yourself to at least 5 other people each time you attend a service. If you church has different service times, try going to a different time each week.

Volunteer: If there is something you are passionate about, look to see what groups you can join and help them promote their cause. You’ll be happy you’re doing something you love and helping others – and you’ll meet many other people with the same interests as you.

Find a Sport: Maybe you like bowling or playing softball…whatever the sport is, find a local team or league you can join. You will make many new friends who you can start socializing with and get a little exercise too.

Find a club: Visit Meetup.com to see what groups and clubs around you are accepting new members and share similiar activities as you. Try to avoid “Singles” clubs, since while in theory they should work, a lot of pressure exists on the group. You will have much better results meeting with people who share your hobby where conversations will flow naturally.

The key is to remember you may not meet someone special from any of these activities, so be sure it is an activity you genuinely enjoy and can benefit from. The goal is not necessarily to meet someone at the activity, but to meet friends who introduce you to new friends who then introduce you to other friends…and hopefully eventually you’ll meet a friend you’d like to develop something more with.

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