If you’re thinking, “I don’t have any friends,” we get it. Let’s explore what this really means.

Not having friends can feel sad, but it’s not rare. It’s fine to not have a big group of friends. But if you want to make new friends, we can help.

Let’s look at why you might feel you have no friends. There are many reasons.


What does it mean to not have friends?

Realizing you don’t have any friends means facing moments alone. Also, you might wish to share with someone else, like laughing at a joke, discussing a movie, or navigating tough times. It often involves spending weekends and evenings without plans, where the silence can feel louder than usual. 

Not having friends might lead you to question your worth or wonder why connecting with others seems so natural for some but not for you. It’s a tangible feeling of being left out, watching others post pictures and stories of gatherings and outings on social media, while your own phone remains quiet. 

Feeling friendless can stir feelings of sadness and a deep sense of missing out on a fundamental human experience—sharing life with friends.


What it looks like to have no friends

You’re at an event, standing quietly on the side. Surrounded by conversation, you feel out of place, preferring the quiet of your own company. This preference for solitude? It’s a hallmark of introversion. Attempting to start a conversation seems like a monumental task, especially when self-doubt creeps in, whispering that you’re not enough.

Life has a way of throwing changes your way—moving cities, and starting new jobs, all of which can sever old ties. Amidst the hustle of daily responsibilities, the thought of making time for friends gets lost. And on days when anxiety or a shadow of depression looms, the idea of reaching out feels even more daunting.

Here’s a gentle reminder: it’s perfectly okay to be in this space. Recognizing the reasons behind feeling friendless is a brave step forward. It’s about finding your people, at your own pace, in environments that resonate with you. Your worth isn’t measured by the number of friends you have but by embracing your true self, quirks, and all.


The 10 Top Reasons You Don’t Have Any Friends

1. You’re shy or uncomfortable around new people

Feeling shy isn’t uncommon; it’s like having an invisible barrier that makes stepping into new social circles feel daunting. When meeting new people, that nervousness isn’t just butterflies in your stomach; it’s more like the whole zoo, making even simple conversations feel like a leap. This shyness can turn the thought of making friends into a mountain that feels too steep to climb.

But here’s the thing: every great friendship starts with a single, often awkward, step forward. It’s about finding those moments of courage to say “hello,” sharing a smile or asking a question, no matter how simple. Remember, many are looking for someone just like you to call a friend. Your shyness doesn’t define you; it’s just a part of your journey towards meaningful connections.

2. Your social skills need major improvement

Starting a conversation might feel really hard, especially when you’re not feeling sure about yourself. It’s a big step towards making friends, though. One good tip is to find events where people share your interests, like a book club or a painting class. Being around people who like the same things as you do can make it easier to start a conversation. However, be aware of signs of bad social skills.

Also, saying ‘yes’ to something new can be your ticket to meeting new friends. Just trying one new activity this week could open up opportunities to connect with others who might just be looking for a friend like you.

3. You not asking the right questions

If you feel like you don’t have friends because talking at events seems tricky, you’re not alone. Learning to chat with others can feel like a big step if you’re not used to it. But, there’s a simple trick to it: ask questions that need more than a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer. Questions like “What do you think about…?” or “How do you feel about…?” open up the conversation and make it more interesting.

Plus, there are lots of free online tools and resources that can give you ideas on what to ask. This way, you can practice and get more comfortable talking to people. Remember, everyone starts somewhere, and it’s perfectly fine to be learning how to make conversations better.

Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.” ― C.S. Lewi

4. Depression negatively impacts new friendships

On the other hand, feeling low or dealing with depression can make you pull away from others and prefer to be alone. It’s not unusual to feel like you don’t want friends when you’re down.

However, reaching out and being around people, even when it feels tough, can sometimes help improve your mood. Professional support, like therapy, can provide strategies to manage depression, and doing something different from what your mood dictates—like going for a walk or calling a friend—can be a small step towards feeling better. Remember, it’s okay to seek help and take actions that might feel hard at the moment but can lead to brighter days.

In a study published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology, found that people with social anxiety disorder tend to view their friendships as being of lower quality compared to how their friends perceive the same relationships. This means that those with social anxiety might be more critical or negative about their friendships, even if their friends think highly of the bond they share.

5. Friendship anxiety complicates things for you 

Feeling anxious can make being alone seem less stressful than trying to make friends. Sometimes, what looks like not wanting friends might actually be anxiety making it hard to reach out. Talking to a therapist can be a big help in figuring out if what you’re feeling is more about anxiety than just wanting to be alone. They can give you advice on how to deal with these feelings and suggest ways to make connecting with others a bit easier. 

Remember, it’s okay to take time to understand your feelings and seek support. Reflecting on whether it’s loneliness or anxiety affecting you and reaching out for professional guidance are positive steps toward feeling better and possibly making new friends.

6. No one knows who you are…show your personality!

Showing the real you can actually draw people towards you. When you’re genuine, you’re more likely to find friends who appreciate you for who you truly are. Hiding behind a mask might seem easier, but it’s your authenticity that will attract the right kind of friends. 

Start by being true to yourself in small ways; don’t be afraid to share your thoughts, interests, and feelings. Letting others see the real you can lead to deeper, more meaningful connections. Remember, being authentic is the key to finding friends who will like and understand you just as you are.

“Silence makes the real conversations between friends. Not the saying, but the never needing to say that counts.” ― Margaret Lee Runbeck

7. You’re in the wrong social circle. Time for a change.

Sometimes, you might feel lonely because you’re around people who don’t really get you. It’s important to be with friends who appreciate you just as you are. Think about if your current friends make you happy. If not, it’s okay to look for new friends who share your interests. For example, if you love painting, join an art class. There, you can meet others who also love painting.

Also, not going to events that interest you can make finding friends harder. Try to find places where you can do things you enjoy. This could be as simple as attending a book club if you love reading. Being a bit brave and joining new activities can lead you to people who like what you like.

8. You lack self-confidence for the first step

Feeling unsure about yourself can also make it tough to reach out to others. Remember, you have qualities that others will admire. Maybe you’re really good at listening or you know a lot about movies. Focus on what you’re good at and tell yourself positive things. This can help build your confidence. Once you start believing in yourself, making friends becomes easier.

Group memberships are more than labels. They show parts of who we are and connect us to others. Knowing our role in different groups helps us understand ourselves and how we fit into the world around us.

9. Cultural differences make it hard to find common ground

Having a different cultural background or speaking another language can sometimes make connecting with others challenging. It’s like being a new piece in a puzzle where it feels like you don’t quite fit. However, remember that there are people out there who are eager to meet someone just like you, someone from whom they can learn new things and with whom they can share their own experiences.

Embracing your unique background can actually be a strength, attracting friends who appreciate diversity and the richness it brings to friendships.

10. You have extremely high expectations of people

Expecting too much from others can often lead to disappointment because everyone has their own limitations. It’s important to set realistic expectations for your friendships.

For instance, if you expect your friends to always agree with you or to always have time for you, you might be setting the bar too high. Understanding that friends show their care in many different ways can help you appreciate the value they bring to your life. Openly communicating about your expectations can strengthen your connections, making your relationships more fulfilling and supportive.


FAQ’s about not having friends

Is it normal to not have any friends?

Yes, it’s normal. Some people don’t have friends, and that’s okay. Everyone is different, and some people prefer being alone or find it hard to make friends.

What are the effects of not having friends?

Not having friends can cause loneliness and isolation, affecting your mental health by increasing stress and lowering self-esteem, potentially leading to depression or anxiety. Social connections, crucial for support and happiness, are missing, which significantly impacts your quality of life.

How can I make new friends as an adult?

To make new friends, engage in activities that align with your interests, such as joining clubs or groups. Volunteering offers a pathway to meet people with similar values. Being proactive in communication and suggesting meet-ups can also foster new connections.

How can I overcome shyness or social Anxiety?

Tackling shyness or social anxiety involves gradual exposure to social situations, increasing familiarity, and reducing anxiety over time. Planning conversation topics ahead can ease interactions. Support from therapy or groups can provide additional coping mechanisms.

What are the qualities of a true friend?

A true friend is trustworthy, reliable, and communicates openly. They empathize, support through ups and downs, and respect personal boundaries. True friendship is marked by mutual respect, loyalty, and the ability to celebrate each other’s success without envy.


Where can you make friends?

Remember, the more you’re around people, the more likely you’ll make friends.

  • Work and Co-living Spaces: Engage with coworkers during breaks or live in shared housing to naturally meet people in your new city.
  • Fitness and Sports: Join exercise groups, fitness classes, or sports leagues to connect with others who share your interest in staying active.
  • Educational and Cultural Activities: Participate in city tours, improv classes, museum tours, or any learning activity that piques your interest, offering both new knowledge and new friends.
  • Clubs and Community Engagement: Explore local clubs, hobbies, or community center activities tailored to your interests, facilitating connections with like-minded individuals.

what is a friend

How to Keep Friends?

Want to keep your friends? Here’s how:

  • Meet Regularly: Hang out often. It keeps friendships strong.
  • Be a Good Friend: Be there for your friends. Listen and help them.
  • Stay in Touch: If you move away, use social media to keep in contact.
  • Put in Effort: Friendships grow when you care and make time for them.

Making friends doesn’t happen overnight

According to a study by Associate Professor Jeffrey Hall from the University of Kansas, it takes about 50 hours of time together to move from acquaintance to casual friend, 90 hours to transition to “friend” status, and over 200 hours to become close friends. 

“Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow ripening fruit.” – Aristotle


Start making a change today

Grab our free Tool Kit which includes a mini-course and a social blueprint, to help you prepare and boost your confidence for social interactions.

By joining our community and exploring more of our blog posts, you’ll move away from thoughts like “I don’t have any friends”. Instead, you’ll find yourself feeling more confident and ready. 

Let’s take this step together towards a more connected and fulfilling social life.

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