A Recipe For Making A New Best Friend

Add in two cups of no expectations. Be off the market for a new best friend. You’re in your mid-twenties and satisfied with your social life. Feel like you don’t need to meet anyone new.

Stir in one fateful meeting. Meet someone at a party or at a bar or at a dinner. They’ll probably be a friend of a friend, which gives them immediate context. Smile politely and introduce yourself. Think nothing of them at first. In your eyes, they’re just another person in a crowded room, another person you’ll meet for a moment and watch disappear. Maybe you’ll run into them again somewhere and have a vague recollection of meeting them. You won’t be able to place them though and you’ll fret over whether to say hello or keep walking. You always keep walking.

But as fate would have it, this person won’t disappear like the others. This person is yours and you just don’t know it yet. Six months from now, you’ll have seen them laugh, cry, and confide in you. You won’t be able to remember a time when they didn’t mean something to you. You’ll say things like, “I can’t believe I’ve only known you for only a little while. It feels like forever.” And you’ll mean it.

Sizzle in six comments that stop you in your tracks. The night you meet them, you begin to overhear the things that are coming out of their mouth, and you begin to realize, “Hey. They’re saying some funny thoughtful shit. I like them!” As the night goes on, you listen attentively to their conversations and begin to engage. When you exchange words, both of you have this moment of, “Wait. I’m obsessed with you. We’re on the same wavelength. Welcome to my life. Can you be a major part of it?’ We’ve heard about the concept of love at first sight and it may not even be a real thing. Friendship at first sight, however, does happen and when it does, it’s very special.

Spend one amazing day together. Getting to know them is so exciting. In a matter of hours, you cover family, friends and lovers, and you discover that you’ve had similar experiences. It’s like you were both on the same life train, but hanging out in different cars. You obsessed over the same books, records, and moments in pop culture before you ever met. This makes it destiny. Feel supremely lucky to have found someone else who gets it, who gets you.

Garnish with one epiphany. You’re never too old to meet a new best friend. Your social life is never full enough. As you get older, you’ll see your friends dwindle down to a select few, and realize how rare it is to actually find lifelong friends. In high school, friendships were so ephemeral. In college, bonds were nurtured by the tight-knit environment created by school. When you graduate and are released into “the real world”, you no longer have any ties to anyone. You make the time for the people you genuinely care about. You say to the friends who matter,”Okay, things are no longer circumstantial. For us to remain close, we’ll actually have to put the work and time into it. I want to know you forever.” If you are still meeting people you want to know forever when you’re forty, consider yourself very lucky. TC mark

image – iStockPhoto

Ryan O'Connell

I'm a brat.


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  • Jordan


    You are awesome.

  • mertzy

    How do you get from “six comments that stop you in your tracks” to “one amazing day together”? Should I be asking people out on platonic friend dates? Or just next-day FB friending and hoping they update their status about going to see that band that is my favorite and none of my lame friends wanted to go but I mean if they are gonna be there maybe we can get drinks before, or whatever, no big deal if they have plans…

    Ugh, why do I find making platonic friends a lot harder than meeting potential love interests?


      It IS harder because most of the usual rules we follow for dating (as covered in the book “The Rules” by those two men) don't apply for friends.

      • http://twitter.com/srslydrew Andrew F.

        C'mon, Joben, this is all covered in “I Love You, Man” (the teachings therein are applicable to both genders, really).

      • taa

        joben… haha

    • http://twitter.com/nanabuuui Anna B

      It's cause you don't give a shit about platonic friends and you don't wanna look like an idiot in front of potential love interests.

      It's like the displays males use in nature to attract a female mate with favorable traits. Wrong move, and they're effed, unable to pass on their genetic traits. YEEE!

  • ricky schitltiiz

    wussup with the pic for this article… want to rub the belly of the girl on the left…..

    also thought catalog you should include the article image on the actual page for the article, right now it only shows as a thumbnail on the home page or the navigation

  • Suzanne Lindgren

    Yes! So rare and magical. We look back on our lives and realize we didn't even know we were waiting. There is no “what it” because we can't stand to imagine never having met them. Thanks for reminding me that this does happen.

  • George

    “It’s like you were both on the same life train, but hanging out in different cars.” -I almost cried this is so awesome.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1363230138 Michael Koh

    Me, I stare at someone until they ask me “what the fuck are you looking at?”

  • savagegirl

    As I creep up on 40, not only do I find that new friends come into my life, friendships grow out of what were mentorships in my twenties, but there are even some stubborn childhood friendships I maintain. Sometimes I lose track of people for a while and they always turn up again. I also had transients, mostly party friends, that I outgrew in my life more often in my twenties. Iknow it's difficult, but aim for older, try 60, because I'm looking at friendships in terms of the rest of my life.

  • douchegirl


  • Kevin

    In response to your last sentence: I am, and I do.

    Lovely as always, Ryan.

  • Maggie

    this was adorable

  • http://hellogiggles.com/random-moments-change-friend-best-friend/ 10 random moments that change someone from "friend" to "best friend"

    […] new friends as an adult is not easy, and making a new best friend is exponentially harder. Suddenly, there are no more homemade friendship bracelets or declarations […]

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