Tips for making and keeping friends as an adult

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When Pew Research asked Americans where they find meaning in life, one of the most common answers was friendship.

The researchers found that adults who had strong friendships were more likely to report high satisfaction with their lives.

But making friends as an adult can be hard.

We're busy. We're tired. And most of us just don't know where to start.

Shasta Nelson, friendship expert and author, says making and keeping friends doesn't have to be complicated. She shared her advice with MPR News host Angela Davis. Darren Johnston of Break the Bubble, a Minnesota group that exists for one purpose—to help adults make friends, joined them.

Advice for making friends

• Don't go into every situation looking for a best friend. You'll be putting too much pressure on yourself and others.

• To make friends, you have to make time. A 2018 study found that you need to spend 50 hours with someone to be friends, and 200 hours to be good friends.

• Struggling to find friends? Look for them at work. Having a best friend at work has been found to increase morale and productivity.


Shasta Nelson is an author, speaker and friendship expert. Her latest book is called "Frientimacy: How to Deepen Friendships for Lifelong Health and Happiness."

Darren Johnston is a board member and enthusiastic leader of Break the Bubble, a Minnesota group that exists for one purpose: to help adults make friends

To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

Correction (Feb. 26, 2019): An earlier version of this story incorrectly spelled the title of "Frientimacy."