Ask Alma: Few hang-out friends


Dear Alma,

I have a nice majority of friends. However, I hang out mostly with my cousin. I am a year older; she is 18. With this being said, she has friends that are in her group range and vice versa. All my friends left for college while I stayed my first two years at home to save money. While being full-time at work and school, I still have leisure time. I find myself isolated because my cousin periodically hangs out with her set of friends more. I believe that because they seem to be more on her “level” and I don’t do half of the things they do. All this is fine. I just find myself bored on most occasions because I basically don’t have any friends to hang out with. I don’t think going out by yourself is that much fun and finding real friends these days are like finding money on the street. What should I do?



Dear Anonymous,

What a fantastic question and I’m so glad you asked. Sweet pea, you are just getting started with life. Your biggest problem should be time, LOL. Believe me when I say, there’s a world full of activities and adventures for you to explore.

Here’s what I’d suggest. If you run, join a running group. Check out the site Do you sing? Join a church or community choir. Take a cooking or swimming class. Tennis, maybe? My cousin Eric enjoys graphic design and art, check out Cause TBT, the question is: what incites your interest? Once you think of something, search that particular group on Facebook. That’s a good start. How about Zumba! Girl, you gotta shake that thaang – show no shame, LOL. Excuse me, I got carried away, back to my Salt & Pepa days.

What I’m saying is: Challenge your comfort zone, expand your horizons. It’s kool to hang out with family and friends, but take some time to explore other hobbies that may interest you as an individual.

Depending on where you live, volunteer at a hospital, or with animals at a local shelter. I know some senior citizens who would love your company. Get out and do something for someone else. There’s more to life than just empty hanging. You’re mission should be to hang out with a purpose. Pour into yourself a hobby or activity that reaps the benefits of attaining a personal goal. Something that engages you and causes you to lose track of time. You’ll meet new friends and a variety of great people who share the same interest.

Get started now, today. Write down every activity you’ve ever dreamed of trying, regardless of location, destination, cost or going at it alone. My advice, young heart – run free, be brave, be bold, you can do it. Side note: I know you’re almost grown, but always tell your parents where you’re going. Before you know it, you’ll have more on your plate than you can chew. Email me back and let me know how it’s going. I can’t wait to hear!