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How To Make Friends as an Adult

This week, in a twist on the usual episode, Savvy Psychologist Dr. Ellen Hendriksen presents an audio excerpt from her debut book, How to Be Yourself: Quiet Your Inner Critic and Rise Above Social Anxiety

By
Ellen Hendriksen, PhD
2-minute read
Episode #204
adult friends laughing and having a good time together

Almost everybody struggles with it. But no one talks about it. What is it? How to discreetly sniff your own armpits in public? How not to buy the free sample after you just ate three of them? Not quite; it’s the mysterious process of making friends as an adult.

As a kid, making friends is easy—you’re buddies with the neighbors or the kids you see in class every day. But after Pomp and Circumstance plays for the last time and you’ve tossed your mortarboard, you’re thrust into a new world of adulting where everything, including friendship, gets more ambiguous. But fear not—you’re not alone, and here is what you need to know. I hope you enjoy it.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • The three ingredients for turning a stranger into a friend
  • The one ingredient that’s more powerful than shared interests or personal commonalities
  • How many conversations it takes before someone considers us a friend
  • How many confidantes the average American has (it’s lower than you think)
  • How perfectionism sabotages making friends or getting closer to acquaintances
  • The true definition of popularity, and how it’s different than what you experienced in middle school

If you liked the excerpt, you can pick up a copy wherever you like to get your audiobooks. If you prefer to read with your eyeballs rather than your ears, you can do that, too, with the ebook or a good old-fashioned hardback wherever you buy your books.

Medical Disclaimer
All content here is for informational purposes only. This content does not replace the professional judgment of your own mental health provider. Please consult a licensed mental health professional for all individual questions and issues.

About the Author

Ellen Hendriksen, PhD

Dr. Ellen Hendriksen is a clinical psychologist at Boston University's Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders (CARD). She earned her Ph.D. at UCLA and completed her training at Harvard Medical School. Her scientifically-based, zero-judgment approach is regularly featured in Psychology Today, Scientific American, The Huffington Post, and many other media outlets. 

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