Difficulty making friends

Difficulty making friends


If you are having trouble making friends at University, remember that the process of making friends can be something most people find difficult. We are all constantly working to improve our social skills. The more experience we get, the easier it becomes.

What is it all about?

Making friends at University isn’t easy for everyone. We are all constantly working to improve our social skills in new situations and the more experience we get the easier it becomes.

If you are joining University straight from your A-Levels, then you may find making friends a little harder than some of your peers. This could simply be because you might have had less practice than a mature student or a student who has been on gap year.
It’s important to remember that you won’t be the only person feeling nervous meeting new people and it’s natural to feel intimidated and self-conscious. The first few weeks of term are an ideal time to make new friends as everyone is in the same situation and therefore more friendly.

Practical advice & tips

Here are a few tips to improve your self-confidence and make new friends.

  • Remember that increasing your confidence is a process and will improve over time as you expose yourself to new situations, environments and people.
  • Try making friends with similar interests. Sparking up conversation with people in halls about what you enjoy, or joining specific societies / clubs will help you find people with similar interests.
  • Try to make friends with people in your flat by hanging around in the communal areas, offering to make people a cup of tea or leaving your room door open when you are in there.
  • Make friends with their friends! If your flatmate introduces you to someone from their lectures or club, introduce yourself!
  • Talk to the person sitting next to you in class. You’re bound to have something in common as you are studying the same thing!
  • Remember that people make friends at different times throughout University. So if you feel that you haven’t made friends with your flatmates in the first week, don’t panic! You will have plenty of opportunities to meet people in your lectures and other social situations.

Here’s a few things to think about when meeting new people:

  • Take a deep breath, smile and be confident! They often say that confidence is an act and breeds natural confidence so give it a go, even if it’s not how you are actually feeling. People will respond well to this. 
  • Focus on them, not you. By doing this you will detract from the nerves you are feeling and you will seem genuinely interested in them as a person. Always have a few questions prepared in your mind if the conversation begins to slow down.
  • Ask them to do something! Once you have made a connection with someone, you should have a good idea on their likes and dislikes so follow it up with some concrete plans!

If these things don’t work out first time round, you can always speak to someone in your college / school who will be able to discuss these issues further with you.

Keep an eye on our social media (@CampusLifeSU) for more advice and guidance as well as our ticketing website for events and initiative where you can meet new people.

Where to go for further support

Check out this blog written by our Student Life Officer, Phoebe Martin- 5 Top Tips For Making Friends At Uni

Swansea University graduates sharing their experience of making friends.


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