Learning how to develop a close relationship with someone new, whether you’re looking to start a friendship or a romantic relationship, can be difficult. Finding a like-minded person is often the first hurdle, but in order to develop a closer bond with someone, you must be open, honest, and caring. The key difference between an acquaintance and a close relationship is trust. Here’s how to make new friends, communicate on a deeper level, and build trust to bring your relationship closer together.
Part 1: Making Friends and Finding Partners
1. Choose someone you want to get to know better. Start a conversation about common interests or ask questions about them. Begin on a lighthearted note, whether in a group setting or one-on-one.
Consider employing the F.O.R.D. technique, which involves focusing the conversation on the following topics: Family, Occupation, Recreation, and Dreams (Hopes).
Consider a conversation to be two-sided. Be interested in what others have to say, and make yourself interesting by relating to others. Share your experiences, but give others a chance to speak. Be approachable and personable.
Even if you are more of an introvert than an extrovert, simply being positive in the conversation and expressing genuine interest in what the other person is saying will increase your chances of developing a stronger connection.
2. Make an effort to interact with that person one-on-one. It can be difficult to form a close relationship with a group. Cultivating closer friendships and relationships frequently necessitates one-on-one interactions. This could entail doing something aside from work, school, or home.
Invite a friend to lunch, coffee, or a hangout spot.
Invite them to join you on a hike, walk, or other outdoor activity.
Visit a bar for a drink.
Participate in activities that make you feel like your best self.
If that person agrees, it’s a good sign that they’d like to get to know you and give you a chance. If they decline, it could be because they are too busy or are not interested in a close relationship.
3. Take an interest in trying something new with someone. Getting out of your routine can often help you become closer to someone. Consider trying something new if the new person is interested in something you would normally be less likely to try. New experiences can help you make new friends and make you more open and interesting to others. Consider breaking out of your comfort zone in the following ways:
Instead of going to a restaurant, go to a local food festival.
Visit a nearby state or national park for the day.
Visit a non-traditional museum, such as a radio and television museum or a sports hall of fame.
Instead of going to the movies, consider going to a local comedy show or a play.
Attend a sporting event that is out of the ordinary.
Take a class together — art, fitness, cooking, or something completely new.
4. Look for a partner. Many happy romantic relationships are founded not only on sexual compatibility, but also on a close friendship. It’s crucial that the person you’re dating makes you feel attractive and loved, but it’s also critical that you can communicate about important issues.
Consider online dating. This is an opportunity to meet a large number of people and see if you click before meeting in person.
Attend parties, events, and social gatherings with the intention of spending one-on-one time with someone intriguing.
5. You should go out on your own. Consider doing things on your own, away from the people you usually hang out with. Doing things on your own may encourage you to interact with new people and open up more than usual.
If you don’t already hang out with a friend, you’re more likely to develop a relationship with someone new.
Part 2: Communicating at a Higher Level
1. Be an attentive listener. Don’t be distracted or try to multitask, especially if you’re trying to build a relationship with someone new. They may interpret your lack of focus or attention as a sign that you are uninterested in getting to know them. Consider the following ways to demonstrate your interest in them:
Listen intently. Give the new person your undivided attention. Keep an open mind.
Maintain eye contact and provide nonverbal cues of comprehension, such as saying “uh-huh” or nodding your head.
Understand what they’re saying and respond with empathy. Consider saying something like, “It sounds like you had a difficult day after taking that final exam.” I understand how stressful it can be. I just finished a difficult exam last week.”
2. Spend time with each other. There is a level of comfort that is built simply by being in the same place and doing something together, and this is an important step toward reaching a point where it feels natural and safe to begin having deeper conversations. When you watch a movie together, for example, you’re not necessarily talking or relating, but you’re sharing an experience and becoming accustomed to being in each other’s company.
Make the other person a part of your life. Invite them to group outings, sporting events, team or club meetings, or just to hang out in the park.
3. Discuss difficult subjects.  Formal paraphrase These are not likely to be discussed the first time you meet someone new, but rather after you have established a one-on-one rapport with them. Being open to discussing difficult topics can bring you closer to someone. Deeply communicate your thoughts and feelings. Trusting someone new every now and then may make you feel better in the long run.
One of the most important topics to discuss can be values and beliefs. You are more likely to become close to that person if you understand and share values and beliefs.
Stressors related to upbringing and recent personal crises may lead to a deeper understanding because sharing fears or insecurities can be difficult but cathartic.
Consider asking questions like, “How did you feel as a child?” or “Do you have a good relationship with your parents?” It is critical to learn about someone’s thoughts and feelings.
4. Conversations that are solely about you should be avoided. Make sure you both get to talk about what you want to talk about, and give everyone an equal chance to speak up. One-sided conversations may leave the newcomer feeling unappreciated or unimportant.
Deeper relationships are built on mutual respect and appreciation for one another’s contributions.
Consider saying something like, “That’s how it was for me last week; how about you?” or “I’d like to hear about what you’ve been going through.”
It is critical to allow someone to speak without interruption.
Part 3: Establishing Trust
1. Allow yourself to be exposed. Vulnerability may appear negative and frightening, but it is actually a positive way to open yourself up to a closer and deeper relationship with someone. Vulnerability entails revealing a side of yourself that is difficult to discuss but necessary to share with those you trust in order to build a close relationship.
Learn to be emotionally honest with yourself. While this may be difficult in large groups, it is critical to share your concerns and fears with people in smaller or one-on-one settings.
Don’t obsess over the negative. It is critical, especially if this is a new person, to focus on both the positive and negative aspects, rather than just one or the other.
When someone asks, “How’s your family?” rather than saying, “They’re fine,” be honest about what’s bothering you. You don’t have to turn the conversation into a rant, but it can help someone understand what you’re going through. Instead, you could say, “They’re doing quite well. My mother is ill, but we’re all working together to support her.”
2. Acquire someone’s trust. Be a trustworthy friend or romantic partner. Don’t always put off calling or texting someone new because you have other obligations. Make time for the people who are important to you.
Being dependable is an important part of establishing trust. It demonstrates that you follow through on your promises and that your words are not hollow promises.
Playing games with someone you like or possibly love is not a good idea. Be available to them.
Make an effort to be on time or stick to your plans. If you fail to “honour your word,” you will lose someone’s trust.
For example, if you know you’ll be late, call or text the person you’re meeting to let them know. And, if you’re going to be unable to attend an event, notify them at least 24 hours in advance.
3. Make that person your top priority. When you make someone a priority by returning phone calls in a timely manner, arriving on time for a scheduled event, or giving them your undivided attention, it has a significant impact on how close you are with that person.
Make someone feel important. If you demonstrate through your words and actions that this person is both interesting and important, the person is likely to respond in kind. Treat others the way you want to be treated.
Let someone know you’re thinking of them if you’re in a romantic relationship. While boundaries are important in any relationship, fostering love by making someone feel special is essential.
Consider giving a small gift on special occasions, or even just when you believe they could benefit from your assistance.
If they are stressed, worried, or in need of assistance, offer your assistance. Being handy and helpful can make or break a relationship.
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