A Stranger In A Big City

March 4, 2009Comments Off on A Stranger In A Big City

You’ve just moved to a big city and you don’t know anyone. How would you make friends? How do you get yourself into a friend’s circle?

You might ask friends and family from back home to introduce you to people they know in the city. You might join clubs/social groups. You might attend events. You might invite your work colleagues to a post-work drink. You might introduce yourself to your neighbours.

What wouldn’t you do? You wouldn’t approach a stranger in the street and ask him to be friends – no matter how similar he looked to you. You wouldn’t ask 5 people at once to be your friend. You wouldn’t expect someone to be your friend if you haven’t given them a reason to be.

Community building is surprisingly similar to this. Like being in a new city, you’re surrounded by people. But you can’t easily strike up a conversation with a stranger. You need a connection to talk to them. A mutual acquaintance, a shared event. You need a common interest beyond living in the same city or liking the same topic.

This means, for the best part, you need to treat community building as friendship making. The easiest way to become a part of the community is to become a part of it. Attend events, ask your friends who they know that loves {community topic}, befriend one person and then meet his or her friends.

Build a friendship group first, then keep going.

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