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Mining Your Neighborhood for Friends

Making Friends in The Neighborhood

Next Door: Making Friends in Your Neighborhood

With life being more mobile than ever before, we’re less likely to know our neighbors—missing out on a fertile and convenient source of friendships.

Compared to prior generations, people are much more mobile—picking up and moving for education, job opportunities, romance and other social reasons, or even wanderlust.

Additionally, with more women in the work force, they are less likely to spend time with neighbors in their immediate neighborhood. In fact, they are far more likely to make friends in the workplace downtown or across town, and even online based on shared interests. Home can be especially isolating if they work at home or are heavily involved in caring for children and/or elderly parents.

The unfortunate fallout of these changes has been the isolation and anxiety that is far too common in our culture. Even though we feel lonely, we may be hesitant to reach out to the people next door.

About a year ago, my friend and colleague, Laura E. Kelly wrote an excellent guest post for The Friendship Blog telling how she bravely used technology and a new website to overcome the feelings of estrangement from neighbors that are so typical across America today.

Earlier this week, Katherine Boehret of the Wall Street Journal wrote about NextDoor.com on AllThingsD.com too. The journalist tested the hyperlocal website in her Washington, D. C. neighborhood with some measure of success. I wanted to bring the website and both these posts to your attention again because as the site matures, it grows increasingly useful to its users.

Do you have as many friends in your neighborhood as you would like to have?

Take a look: NextDoor.com

Read a blog post in the New York Times about NextDoor.com.

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Category: MAKING FRIENDS, Where to meet friends

Comments (4)

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  1. ditta02 says:

    I have a neighbor, who I have a good time with when we happen we see each other at the park or around the neighborhood. I would like to be friends, but she seems to be hot and cold. Whenever I see her she will say “oh you have to come to this workout class I am doing” or “you’ll have to come over and see what I have done to the bathroom”, and my response is always, sure let me know when. The part I am confused by is that she never follows up. I have invited her to do things outside of these encounters, and about half of the time I invite we get together, but again she will say we have to do something, and never sets it up. She has referred to me as her friend before, but maybe she throws the word around. Is this girl really not interested in a friendship, and just says those things to be nice, or something else?

    Thanks a lot

  2. Dave says:

    I would recommend meetup as well. Also, Facebook now has OpenGraph that allows you to find friends in your area based on their interest and mutual friends.

  3. Mio says:

    Another way to meet locals (maybe not next door neighbors but people in town) is Meetup. If you are in a big city like me (NYC), there are so many groups for different personalities and interests – if you are shy, introverted, want to go to movies, even if you like puppets! You won’t make friends instantly but getting out there and meeting new people is a start.

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