The Introvert’s Guide to…Making Friends

In this episode Jess and Phil talk about making friends as an introvert (or even just as an adult), and how difficult that can be.

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Phil Rickaby: I’m Phil Rickaby and I’m a writer and performer and I am also an introvert.

Jess McAuley: And I’m Jess McAuley and I am a theater maker and I am also an introvert. And this is the introvert’s guide to

Phil Rickaby: on the introvert’s guide to we talk about the introvert life and how to live it to the fullest.

Jess McAuley: We’ll choose a topic and discuss it as well as try to find other helpful hints on social media and the internet at large,

Phil Rickaby: if you want to drop us a line, we would love to hear from you. You can find us on Twitter and Instagram at introvert guide to the number two, and you can find the website at introvert’s guide If you want to send us a message, you can do that through the website, or you can email us at introvert’s guide to And remember, we may use your questions or comments on an upcoming episode of the introvert’s guide to.

Jess McAuley: And if you like the podcast and you listen on apple podcasts, please consider leaving a comment and a five star rating, your comments and ratings, help new people find the show, but even better, whether you listen on apple podcasts, Google podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. If you know someone that might like the introvert’s guide to tell them about it.

Some of our favorite podcasts became our favorites because someone we know told us about them.

Phil Rickaby: So, Jess, when was the last time that you made a new friend,

Jess McAuley: what people make friends

Phil Rickaby: I’ve heard that that’s the thing that people do.

Jess McAuley: Oh my goodness. That was a genuine laugh too. I think the last, I think the last time I made new friends was I want to say when I started my new job in 2019, I think, I just think it just worked really well and kind of clicked with the people in that department and yeah, from there, I think like, just as I moved through from department to department, I started just jelling with people.

So it’s, but it’s still been a couple of years.

Phil Rickaby: I’m going to complicate the question. Oh, when was the last time you made a new friend that wasn’t at work?

Jess McAuley: Oh boy. Oh, I know, I know. I know when I did a community theater show in 2019, so just a little bit after I started my new job, I made, I met some really nice folks. Okay. But I didn’t see them after the show finished. So,

Phil Rickaby: so not really great friends, just show friends,

Jess McAuley: just really nice people, really nice folks that I have on my Facebook.

And I wish them the best.

Phil Rickaby: I think that the last time I made friends outside of work was when I was on a fringe tour. Or you could be you could say that that’s partially where. But it’s not my day job, so I’m going to go with not work. But that was probably the last time that I can imagine myself making a new friend.

So the question is, the question is how the heck, and this is not, I think that I think that some extroverts have this same problem too, but the question is how do we as adults make friends? And when that’s complicated by how do we as introverted artists make friends, then the question is anybody’s game.

Jess McAuley: Oh, it’s, this will be forever a topic that just will not have any answers to it. I, I feel as though this is something we could revisit over and over, and the conversation can still keep changing because it’s, it’s hard these days to make friends. And especially because we can’t really go anywhere and with things changing and protocols changing, it’s tough, right?

Because we need to stay safe, need to stay back. And that kind of limits where we can go and how we can socialize.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah. I think, I think that the, the, the question about the question itself is sort of like a pre or post pandemic question, because everything is so up in the air right now. It’s not like we’re going out and able to really meet people.

But it’s like, I know a few people who, because of the way that we’re doing, let’s say for example, to keep it, you know, cause its us. If they’re doing like digital theater sometimes they’ve managed to, to meet people they normally wouldn’t have met because they’re working with people who are across the country from them or in a different country and they’re creating something with them, but that’s online and it’s, it’s, you know, just also guys, it’s a show who knows if it goes past the show, but outside of all of that and outside of the pandemic times it’s still an open question for that as well, because even if we weren’t on rotating lockdowns and things opening up and then closing back down and still being concerned and distancing and all that sort of stuff, we’d have the question.

How do we make friends? Do you have any thoughts about that?

Jess McAuley: Honestly, I think it has a lot to do with what I’m looking for to get out of these relationships. Am I looking for just more people to broaden my horizons and my social network? Am I looking for, you know, a new companion? I think it depends on what sort of relationship I have the mental capacity to nourish that I think will actually narrow down where I can meet these people.

So again, specifically for you and I, sometimes that can be in an artistic atmosphere. We can meet like-minded people. We can have those deep conversations community theater, again, that was a place for me to meet people. If I’m looking for that network, then sometimes work is a really great place. If you haven’t exhausted all of your.

All of your relationships there.

Phil Rickaby: I think, I mean, we can narrow this down to a couple of different scenarios. There’s two scenarios that I can think of. First one, I think is one of the more common ones. If for some reason you have to move to a new city, let’s say you move to a new city for school, school simplifies meeting people because you’re thrown into situations where you’re going to meet people.

But if you are thrown into a situation where you’re moving to a new city for work, not everybody wants to make friends at work and other, but it does make friends at work. So you end up in a position where you’re in a new city and you are trying, you know, you don’t know anybody in this new city, let’s say, so now you have to figure out how you’re going to have some kind of social life, how you’re going to meet people in this new city.

On the other side, my other hypothetical is post pandemic. When let’s say we’ve been you’ve, you know, you’re, you still feel affectionate for the people who you knew before, but because of all of this stuff, you’ve sort of drifted apart. And now you find yourself in a position where maybe that’s not a relationship that, that has any has a lot of meaning for you anymore.

Now you have to get out and find new friends, new companions, new activity buddies, let’s say,

Jess McAuley: you know, I think what’s what’s useful is social media platforms like Facebook have what’s, what’s called neighborhoods. They’ve got pages where for your designated city. And so often I see a lot of folks saying, Hey, I’m new here. I’m just wondering what’s in the areas or anything to do. I’m looking to meet people and they’re looking for advice.

I actually am thinking what a wonderful new avenue to try. I mean, it’s tough to put yourself out there in physical situations, but to maybe put yourself out there in a digital sense, seems helpful in, see it just breaking the ice.

Phil Rickaby: I have to admit that Facebook has presented me with a neighborhood’s option several times.

And I’ve been reluctant to join a neighborhood partially because I feel like don’t, you have enough information about me already Facebook. But also like, I just, I’m not sure what it would do for me. So have you joined a neighborhood?

Jess McAuley: I have, I I’ve joined my neighborhood and it’s interesting to see like new restaurants popping up or a new groups that are opening in the area.

So I personally enjoy it. I do have to skip a lot of notifications cause there is some conversations that just, you know, don’t tickle my fancy, but I mean, you could always leave these things later, once you’ve exhausted all of your options out of it too. Right? Like even just for the sake of experimenting.

Phil Rickaby: It’s true. It’s true. Let’s say that you didn’t have Facebook as a, as a method for meeting new people. And let’s say that that getting involved in a community theater show for example, was not in the cards for somebody. Okay. What would you suggest that somebody do to meet, to meet new people and make some new friends?

Jess McAuley: I, this is going to sound a little cheesy, or this might be a practical idea, but I’m, I do enjoy the old fashioned method of even checking out community boards at a library. There’s lots of groups. There’s lots of activities that take place there. And it’s always nice to participate in those public spaces.

Again, you never know who you’re gonna meet and you never know what sort of skill or new knowledge you’re going to pick up to. Right. So, and of course I am a big advocate of supporting your public library. Absolutely. Yeah. So community boards, check them out, see what’s out there. You never know, right?

Oh, trivia nights, trivia trivia, trivia nights. Yeah, lots of different pumps.

Phil Rickaby: What if you’re really bad at trivia?

Jess McAuley: It’s always nice. Okay. I have gone to a trivia night by myself. I’m not the greatest at trivia, but I watched from a distance and you laugh, sir. But I watched from a distance and just to watch and be a witness to it.

And I actually found myself talking to the people that were next to me that weren’t participating either. I know, I know Jess out in the wild. I I actually found myself. I it’s different. I, I never did it again. I just did it the once. But it was, it was worth the try. It didn’t necessarily mean I made best friends, but it made socializing easier.

Now, if you’re still not interested in that again, there’s, there’s other things to try, but trivia is fun.

Phil Rickaby: There used to be on the Reddit, on the Toronto, you know, most cities have their own Reddit subreddit. Right. And there used to be there’s there was a monthly get together at a, at a downtown pub.

And I, it was the kind of thing where I kept, and this was like years ago. I kept telling him, so I should go to that. I should go to that. And I never, I never did. And then one time I did, but I, I ended up arriving essentially too late and already. And if I say too late, because essentially clique’s and conversations had already basically sprung up and I felt.

Really awkward being there because there were already conversations going on. So I essentially showed up and went no, and I, I know opt out, but I would imagine that if you were if you were to show up earlier that a friendly organizer would come to you and say, Hey, are you here for the meetup? And then you would at least be in the area in, in the, in the pub and, and be able to participate in a way that maybe you, if, if you were me and showing up just a little bit later we’re able.

Jess McAuley: Sorry. It’s always just weird to hear Phil Rickaby and showing up later in one sentence, because I know I had them full person. I know I had it. Yeah. Yeah.

Phil Rickaby: The thing that I had to do different man, and there was some other things. And so I showed up late and I know it’s weird because I am not a late comer.

I am always early or on time, but this time I was late.

Jess McAuley: So if you’re looking to make friends be early,

Phil Rickaby: but not too early,

Jess McAuley: not too early, don’t come to the party too early.

Phil Rickaby: Don’t. One other thing is that the, I mean, it’s primarily seen as a dating app, but Bumble has a friends option. So you can go to the site where words just looking for friends now I’ve never done it.

So your mileage may vary because it’s weird. It seems weird to me to swipe left or right on potential friends.

Jess McAuley: Yeah. Yeah. You also have to pay for it. It’s like it to me, what I don’t like about it is you have to pay for it or you can’t see pictures. You can’t see like, the information is so limited that it’s not a very accessible app because I myself wanted to try it.

I wanted to try it when I moved back to my hometown.

Phil Rickaby: And it, it, it, I didn’t, I didn’t know that you had to pay for the friends option, which is probably why one of the many reasons why I haven’t.

Jess McAuley: Yeah. I wanted to see who it was that I would be potentially interacting with. What if we wanted to meet up? And I had no idea what you looked like. Wow. I

Phil Rickaby: find like I still find it weird.

The idea of swiping on, on people who you think are friends. It’s one thing to do it to people you think about dating, but what are you doing? And you’re like, why are you swiping left or right. Like, are you like this person’s hot? This person’s not, or this person’s interesting. I don’t, I have no idea. I don’t know.

Jess McAuley: No, it’s, it’s true. There’s a difference between doing that for prospective suitors than there is for somebody that you’re just looking to maybe go out for a coffee with, I think you really close off your options at that point.

Phil Rickaby: Did you say pre prospective suitors? Yes. Very very Tennessee Williams. Have you very Southern some people,

Jess McAuley: Hey, some people would call me articulate.

Some folks, call me classy,

fill cost me Tennessee Williams.

Phil Rickaby: That’s your new nickname, Tennessee Williams. We’ve got to change all the descriptions. It could be a Tennessee Williams.

Jess McAuley: Absolutely. If I don’t introduce myself, the next episode is Tennessee Williams. We’re reshooting this. Yeah, absolutely.

Phil Rickaby: I’ll be sure to write that down and remember it.

You know, I think that one of the reasons why this is sort of such a, a big problem is, you know, I hear about people who are introverts and, you know, they’ve been, they’ve been sort of like content in their shelf for a little while, and then they get to a point where they’re like, I need to spread my wings a little bit, but if you are not in school and you you’re really, like, let’s say that, you know, you work to get a paycheck, not to make friends.

Then how do you make friends? And that’s sort of like the whole, the whole question, and this is why it’s an important one for us to, to discuss. So we’ve got like those grocery store, community boards or the library, community boards we’ve got potentially going to a trivia night and, and lurking there.

We’ve got maybe Bumble, but apparently I have to pay for that. What about, I don’t know if there’s like some kind of like activity that you could do, like if one of those paint nights or something, or, or, I don’t know, a pottery Fang somewhere. I’m just throwing random stuff.

Jess McAuley: No for sure. And again, that comes right back to checking out those community boards.

You mean like even your local arts organizations? I used to live in in London, Ontario, and the arts project was an incredible space to be able to go and do that, but they didn’t necessarily advertise that on social media. So I found that the more I was going to visit these spaces, the more I was, you know, just taking the time to go out physically and explore the more I was finding them.

Because again, a lot of organizations don’t post these things because they have enough of a demographic that are coming in to visit. Right. So finding those different public spaces, arts organizations, I just always support them. They’re always going to have something interesting.

Phil Rickaby: It’s interesting because to me.

If you’re not posting it, like you could be like, yes, we get enough people, but if you’re not posting it, you’re not really doing anyone any favors because then how does anybody find you?

It just seems like a man, that’s a tough one thing. Yeah, no, I get it. But you know, that’s sort of why, like, it can, it can feel a little exclusionary, like if you showed up and it’s always the same people who were there, so they’re already in a clique and you’re the new person. If they’re not the kind of group that’s going to be like, Hey, it’s a new person.

Come over here, sit down. Which, you know, if they’re a group of introverts, they’re probably not going to be. Then that’s, that’s sort of the, it sort of like, feels like you’re not welcome. And so you might, might actually bail or go once and never go back. Oh.

Jess McAuley: And it’s gotta be heartbreaking too. If it’s something that you’re actually genuinely interested into, right.

Yeah, I know that there’s definitely some community spaces here that I’m genuinely interested in, but I know that I’m not going to get, you know, a social aspect out of it. It’s going to be a, I show up and I definitely leave alone, you know, friend wise, not looking for a date.

Phil Rickaby: No, no, no, no. Yeah. It’s theirs.

And I mean, this is, I think the, the, the difficulty here is that I, in this particular arena have not been particularly successful when I’ve been, when I’ve been in a position where I’m like, I need new friends. Right. I have erred on the side of an introvert met me and decided that I was now their friend.

I have been, I have benefited from many introverts or extroverts adopting me and deciding that I was their new friend. And that’s, that’s how I got associate.

Jess McAuley: I love that adopted introvert. I think that should be our good platform,

but it makes so much sense too. I mean, I’m just thinking about how many times that has happened now. I have like a little shelter puppy sign on my back, I think.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah. I mean, this is the thing is I think that for, for a lot, for, I know that I’ve benefited from being adopted by extroverts. Many times, you obviously have also benefited from being adopted by, by extroverts many times.

So, you know, if, if for some reason, I dunno, I dunno. Like where can you go to find extroverts to adopt you? Right. That’s I guess if that’s what you needed, what would you do? I think. For me, one of the things that was, was often in the past a way that I was able to meet new people and here we get back into nerdy fill.

So you’re going to get really excited. I can hear you rubbing your hands together because we’re going to talk about how I used to do live action role play

Jess McAuley: one sec, one second. Phil nerd. There we go.

I can hear the pain. Sorry.

Phil Rickaby: It’s fine. It’s fine. But that was, that was like one of the ways that I met people. Cause it was a social situation. Now, granted, it was all based around the character you were playing and things like that, but it was, there were, there are people that I have met through that. Who were still very wonderful friends now.

And so, although it is easy to roll your eyes at it and keep in mind that it’s not always like it is eh in, on TV and it’s not always what you see if you’re watching the Hawkeye series on Disney plus it’s not necessarily that, but it is close in some cases. But it’s, it is it is a way to get out there and sort of to where it’s acceptable for you to pretend to be somebody else cause everybody else is doing it.

And then afterwards, suddenly you have a bunch of people who are basically your new.

Jess McAuley: She, no, actually you bring up a good point. I just remembered not just art spaces, but there’s even gameboard board cafes. Yes. Yeah. Or, or even just oh my goodness. Tabletop stores as well. Those spaces are incredible for newcomers as well.

And if you’ve never tried tabletop gaming, it is a game changer. It’s it is absolutely a hobby that I would encourage you. And I’m sure Phil, you would encourage others to it’s. It’s a wonderful space to go and meet new people. And there,

Phil Rickaby: you know, I say first off I have to ask, have you done tabletop gaming, Jess?

Jess McAuley: Fine. I’ll go. As far as I’ll go. As far as to say I played D and D for quite some time. Okay.

Phil Rickaby: Well, I mean, here’s the thing about that though, is that, is that. These sorts of things. And if you, if there is a board game cafe near you find it, if they have like an open table night or if they do something like that, because if they do then great, you show up, you play some, you learn a board game, you play the board game and maybe you’ve met some new people.

If you’re going to, to do tabletop gaming, like Warhammer or something like that, which just believe me, when I tell you that if you fall down the manager’s hole, you’re never getting out. Just understand that. But it is also a great way to meet new people. If there’s a way to, there’s a like a a gaming store that has a D and D night or something like that, where they’re welcoming people in go there.

We have an, if it’s a, it’s a V it’s an introduction to D and D like that could be fun, too. Like all of these things are available for you. You just have to seek them.

Jess McAuley: Absolutely. And all levels are always welcome. There, there are certainly beginners classes that are, that will take it from the very base level, because sometimes there are some tabletop games that do get complicated.

Don’t allow them to scare you away. There are lots of games with different levels out there, and again, the community is very welcoming.

Phil Rickaby: Absolutely. Absolutely. And it’s a, it’s a great way to, to, to, even if it’s not something that you ended up that you end up doing, you tried something new and you might’ve had a little bit of fun.

Jess McAuley: Yeah, absolutely. I know I’ve never had a bad time playing Catan. No, my husband likes my ass, but I just feel like, you

Phil Rickaby: know, whatever. No friends, don’t let friends play Catan with each other friends. Don’t let friends play settlers of Catan together. It’s just, it’s just that

Jess McAuley: it gets violent. It’s never a good time.

I may have uttered some threats here and there.

Phil Rickaby: I mean, this is the problem with it. This is a problem. Settlers of Catan is very dangerous game. Much like, you know, we’ve heard like think, you know, if you remember, there was a Seinfeld episode where Newman and Kramer were playing Risk. A lot of people have the same feeling about risk is that it’s it’s can be a certain, that risk and settlers of Catan could be a friendship ender.

And I know people who have like, yes, the game has in the past, been in their house, but it’s not welcome on the table because it’s a game where you were expected to hold out on your friends. It’s not cooperative it’s player versus player. And so now I have to either lie to my friends or hold out on my friend to try to screw my friends over, which can be fun.

But after a while, if in certain groups it can start to feel a little vindictive. So it’s in some, in some, some spheres, it is not a, not a great game to play with friends or somebody who is, who is liable to be a table flipper. Don’t

Jess McAuley: I would argue that monopoly is the exact same thing, though.

Phil Rickaby: Well, you get no argument from me.

You get no argument from me. Monopoly’s a terrible game.

Jess McAuley: Oh, it’s awful. I mean, the second that you land on park place and you look across the table and you see like, just your friends, devilish eyes glowing from the other side, there’s that maniacal laughter coming from them. It’s like, who are you?

Phil Rickaby: No, absolutely.

Absolutely. And when you have that bad role where you’re suddenly you’re landing on all of that person’s properties and suddenly you’re out of money because they’ve just taken it all. Yeah.

Jess McAuley: Yeah. I, yeah, that was me and my dad. I had to stop playing with him. Oh, dad’s dad’s not allowed to play monopoly anymore.

It’s his favorite game? I love the man. Absolutely not. I’m not nourishing that love language.

Phil Rickaby: No, no. And that’s not even a love language. So monopoly is not a love language. Let’s just get that out of the way

Jess McAuley: it could be at this point,

Phil Rickaby: I guess it could be, but not, not the kind of know my love language and I don’t relate.

Jess McAuley: I just, I, if anyone is like flipping through this podcast and they come across our rant of monopoly, they’re like, what is this? This is, truth

Phil Rickaby: is welcome to inter it’s guide to where we cover a variety of topics.

Jess McAuley: Yep. I’m Tennessee Williams.

Phil Rickaby: So I mean, the, I think the there’s all kinds of options out there. They might not be the thing you think. And, and if, if I think it’s important to talk about this, cause I think for a lot of people, when they get to a certain point in their lives, they think the only way that I’m going to be able to make friends is to go to a bar and meet people.

And that for most introverts is just not happening. Unless an extrovert sees you in a.

Jess McAuley: Yeah. I can’t imagine that those ever really turning out great. No. Yeah, no, I I’ve. I’m I’ve never really gone to, besides that trivia night, I’ve never gone to a bar where there’s like maybe no event by myself, just because I, you know, different coming from this perspective of being a small person at a bar by themselves, it’s already a little intimidating.

And like you said, unless there’s that extroverts, those extroverts that are willing to invite you and even then I’m still a little wary of that.

Phil Rickaby: Sure. I mean, because the bar is not for everybody and in some ways you have to make judgment calls the whole time we were there.

Jess McAuley: Sometimes it’s too loud.

Phil Rickaby: Oh my God.

I can’t. I can’t. Okay. So when I turned 40. I found that I could no longer spend time in a bar and have conversations with people. My hearing was, I mean, I’m not, I don’t have hearing loss or anything, but I could no longer discern, like my ears could no longer focus on the speech while the music was happening.

So it was like time, time to not spend a whole lot of time in loud bars.

Jess McAuley: Yeah. My my husband and I used to go to we used to hang out at bars whenever I first moved to London, but that’s because like, that’s, that’s just where him and his friends hung out. And so him and I started going in, the more like we, we progressed in our relationship.

I think we went out to a bar one night. We were there for like maybe a drink. And we were like, I want to go home. I want to make some tea and we’ll watch a movie like, and no second night, like I can’t have a solid conversation with friends at a bar anymore because I, you know, I have auditory processing disorder.

So it makes it almost inaccessible for me to join in on a conversation because I can’t take in what you’re saying properly and I can’t join in on, I can’t join.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah. I think generally bars are not necessarily the best place for making friends either because chances are that friendship maybe based around alcohol.

And that might not be the best relationship.

Jess McAuley: Yeah, absolutely. It, you don’t know how often you’re going to have to go back and hang out with that friend and those spaces get old real

Phil Rickaby: quick. Okay. Yeah, they do. They do. I guess. In general, you kind of have to be a little bit creative and think outside of what you’ve sort of been socialized to think is the way that you’re going to meet friends, because you’re not in school anymore.

And if work is not really a place where you want to meet friends, I mean, depending on your job, maybe you don’t want to. So how do you do it? A bar might work for you when you’re, when you’re younger, but it’s not really going to work in the longterm. So what activities or what things can you find that will help you to, to find new people?

I think that’s kind of what we’ve been going over.

Jess McAuley: Yeah. And when you do find those new people. Make your judgment call, but if there’s somebody that they’re, you’re willing to socialize with, again, it’s sort of like that first state dance of saying, yeah. So not do you come here often? I am not saying say that.

No, no, no. Don’t but I am saying that, try to engage them and see if maybe they’d be interested, you know, if it’d be okay if I take along the next time you come, the next time you come back or again, not that phrasing, I’m just, it’s really hard

Phil Rickaby: if you’re doing something that is like a regular thing, like a trivial or a, if you decide to, to give a try at some live live action role playing, or a tabletop gaming or board gaming, like don’t just go the ones go, go to the next.

Especially, if you had a good time go the next time, maybe those people are regulars and they go often. And which case you’re going to have a better time because you get you like now those are familiar faces and you don’t have to force the friendship. It’ll have.

Jess McAuley: Yep. Exactly. And then next thing you know, you can add each other on social media.

If that’s a thing, spot phone numbers, though. That’s when the real friendship can begin, but it’s breaking the ice. That’s the hardest part. And don’t let that hold you back. But again, that all depends on. If the relationship is there don’t force it. You don’t want to come off too strong.

Phil Rickaby: Kind of why I’m saying like go to the event.

If it’s a regular thing, go a few times. That way you’ll see, like, if you’ve gained where this person before, maybe they’ll invite you over to the table or you have the opportunity to play with them again, let it happen a little bit more organically. I know we want it to happen overnight because if you, especially, if you’re in a new situation or a new place, it can be kind of lonely, but you know, you want to have it happen in an organic way.

So a it doesn’t come across as creepy or desperate

Jess McAuley: here, here. Yeah.

Phil Rickaby: Shall we go over to some social.

Jess McAuley: Oh, let’s socialize with some friends. Yeah. Let’s go to social

Phil Rickaby: On social media, we asked making friends is hard, especially as an adult without school and the activities we practiced in our childhoods.

It’s difficult to find people you connect with for introverts. It’s even harder. We’ve all heard the meme about how introverts make friends when an extrovert adopts them. But is that really the way, how have you made friends as adults? Steven says my professional career activities and my hobby are both social leaning activities.

So yeah, pretty much forced me to be an extrovert.

Jess McAuley: Oh boy.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah, I, I, I of I’m kinda like forced, you talked about like,

Jess McAuley: you get turned that on and off. It’s all good.

Phil Rickaby: Anyway, nitpicking baking shine. Shawna said kids help my friends in the last seven years have come through classes because of babies slash small kids. And then knowing one extrovert and having her friends adopt me again with the extrovert adopting.

Jess McAuley: Wow. We really lean on them right now.

Phil Rickaby: I mean, I think we do anyway.


Jess McAuley: You know, this may be an introvert only space, but extroverts, we appreciate you.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah. This is a bunch of friends I wouldn’t have, if not for the extrovert who adopted me. Jamie said I haven’t made new friends with anyone outside of work or channel 10. I haven’t made friends with anyone outside of work or tangentially collect.

That’s a hard word or tangentially connected to an old friend to an old friend in many years.

Jess McAuley: Okay. Me too. I

Phil Rickaby: hear you. I hear you because I mean, that’s sort of the whole thing, right. Is in some ways we can lean on our, on existing friends. And through them we meet new people. But if we’re in a position where that’s not on the table, then we’re sort of lost, right?

Jess McAuley: Yeah. I don’t know. Like I’ve never really connected with old friends. I feel like once. Relationship. I mean, I’m, you know, I feel bad saying it, but once that relationship has been exhausted it’s and to the graveyard we go, I suspect

Phil Rickaby: you about friends who have just been friends with him for a long time, rather than old friends that have fallen by the wayside.


Jess McAuley: Right. Go Jamie.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah. Leanne says, well, I never really left school because I’m a teacher. So a lot of my friends are also professional colleagues. Otherwise I have a couple of social hobbies where I made a lot of great friends recently though. It’s been making friends with parents at my kid’s activities because I spend a bunch of times chauffeuring my littles around.

And when you spend so much time sitting in lobbies together, you get to know each other. I’ve met a few other amazing dance moms and have clicked well with them. Ironically, a lot of them are educators too. So there was some quick connection.

Jess McAuley: I’m going to note that as a future parent. Yes. Yeah. Okay. Okay.

That, that’s an avenue for meeting

Phil Rickaby: people. Absolutely. Absolutely. Sitting in lobbies or waiting for your kids to finish their lesson. Oh boy. Yeah. At least said you have to go out of your way to engage some activities and tend to pick up friends on the way that are. Like-minded that being said, you become comfortable with smaller circles.

The older you get, I’ve been comfortable with small circles for like 20 years.

Jess McAuley: Yeah, me too. I didn’t realize how comfortable I was. I always thought there was something wrong with me for having a small circle, but no, no, no. It says, this is where we live this.

Phil Rickaby: I mean, this is the thing is I think that when we’re younger, like in your twenties, you think that you need to have a lot of friends.

Right. But especially if you’re an introvert that probably doesn’t feel very. And it, it did like, like, you know, we’ve talked about my ideal party size, like five people plus me. So six people total, maybe, but like five, once it gets over five people, I’m kind of like, that’s where it starts to push into. Now I’m starting to be uncomfortable and overwhelmed.

So like knowing that like my closest group of people is that my, is that say at a birthday party or something that’s ideal for me is like five people. My, my close friend group is quite.

Jess McAuley: Yeah, no, I, I can I honestly can get behind that. And I mean, again, you, I really like what Elise says. You do have to go out of your way to engage in these activities. You do, you have to take those chances there because no, one’s going to knock on your door and if they do, they’re not there to make friends.

So don’t try there.

Phil Rickaby: No, that’s probably not going to happen in the way that you want it to. And so you do, if you are in the market for new friends, you’re going to have to get out and try a couple of things. So. My lady ran, Zetta says I work from home and I don’t have kids. So I don’t meet a lot of people.

Usually LARPing is one of my sources of new people, but it takes a while. I tend to play big noticeable characters. People expect my actual self to be that way. Otherwise my significant other is a giant extrovert. He makes new acquaintances all the time and then forces me to give them a chance. The thing is I have friends.

I don’t particularly need more, more friends. It’s just more people I have to remember to talk to at least once in a while, I feel like the eight friends I have is plenty. Yeah. I, my slow clap for that because I am, I am very much in support of that.

Jess McAuley: Which part was it the LARPing or the small friends?


Phil Rickaby: friends group friends group.

Jess McAuley: Fair enough. No, absolutely.

Phil Rickaby: I just need to, I need to speak up in defense of morphing. I have to speak up in defense of live action role playing and here is why it gets a bad rap in media. Anytime that it’s brought up, that people are just outright unpleasant nerds or they just like, they don’t come off well, but it is a great way.

To put on another personality for a little while to pretend to be somebody else. And it can also help you to stretch your social skills in a way that maybe you hadn’t before to try to, to, to, to, to interact with people in new ways, and that can actually carry over into your life and, and help you in situations where you can draw on the experience when you are pretending.

And then use that in, in, in, in real life for social situations and things like that. And it is fun and it’s, it’s, it’s a great way to meet people. So by all means, take a chance on LARPing. Don’t knock it till you try it, Jess.

Jess McAuley: Okay. That’s it. If a LARPing situation comes up, I’m going to do it. I’m going

Phil Rickaby: to hold you to.

Jess McAuley: I am. You can go for it. I have said it before. I am willing to try new things. I love D and D I love, role-play not that way. I didn’t think so. I, I just I’m putting it out

Phil Rickaby: there,

Jess McAuley: but I am willing to try it because I, I don’t, I, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it. It’s just, listen. You mentioned it a couple years ago.

It caught me off guard. I did not expect it. And it’s just something I can’t stop.

Phil Rickaby: The, I think the issue is that as adults, we are taught to stop playing, make belief, right? Once you get to a certain age, you were meant to stop pretending. Now in the, in the theater world, we do it all the time, but we call it acting and that makes it a bit. But to, to sort of do like pretend pretending and imagining and like make believe and putting on new characters, that is something that children do.

And as adults, we’re not, we’re expected to have given that up and we don’t do that anymore, but this is a great way to connect with that imaginative space in your brain that maybe you haven’t touched in awhile. And that’s the last thing I’ll say on it, because I feel like I’m on a soap box and I should stop.

Jess McAuley: It’s a, it’s a good soap box. It’s a good one, sir.

Phil Rickaby: Thank you.

Jess McAuley: Shall we go to the

Phil Rickaby: internet? Let’s go to the internet.

Jess McAuley: Okay. So I thought it had been a while since I had looked for extroverts giving us introverts advice. Now this article is not specific for extrovert to introvert. It’s just a. Proclaimed extrovert giving their advice. And I wanted to dissect this article because it actually presents a few anecdotes that I thought were, were a hit or a mess.

Just gonna, just gonna say it. It’s, it’s actually just titled the extroverts guide to making friends everywhere you go. And

Phil Rickaby: I actually need that guide because that just is maybe it’s my perception. That’s just being an extrovert. That’s what I

Jess McAuley: thought too. And especially cause like this, this particular extrovert has a very broad definition for the word friend.

Just going to start that out there where this may be a new friendship to ER, sorry. Whereas introverts, we have a very specific definition for friend, whether this be somebody that we can really connect with on that on a, on a deeper level. It’s not just a surface acquaintance. It’s this is somebody I can actually have a good connection with.

Whereas I find throughout the article guy, you’re going to see it for yourself. Yeah. Okay. All right. This was written back in 2015, and it’s just a blog by the way. So on Saturday night, I stood solo in a long line for a free comedy show, shoving a Chipotle burrito in my face. I was hungry alone and had no plans after this anyway, but by the time the show was over, I was walking out with a group of people for a night of drinks and dancing.

My evening turned out totally different, which I was totally hoping for. How did that happen? Well, I heard the girls in line behind me, eyeing my burrito and wondering out loud whether they should grab dinner there too. I turned around and said, you definitely should. We started talking at first about burritos, but then we kept talking after the show, they invited me to join them.

I ended up having a great Saturday night with random people. Yeah. So this sounds like something where we kind of touched on earlier that we, we can go to these spaces and we can try to pick up conversations with people. This is with the intention of making friends, but put it, this is like a, just anywhere I go, this is what I do.

And I just can’t envision doing this.

Phil Rickaby: No, absolutely not. I, as, as it’s, as you reading through that, I’m like first off, if I was in line eating a burrito and I hear people behind me talking about whether they should get a burrito, do you know what I say? Not a goddamn thing. Keep my mouth shut because I don’t, I’m not here for them.

Like this is small talk and I don’t want it. I

Jess McAuley: know he was thinking that I’m like, if someone starts talking about my burrito, like I just, I don’t, I don’t have the wherewithal to turn around and be like, you’re, you’re totally shy. And like, I just, I don’t know. It’s one of those things of like, unless they tap me on the shoulder and say, Hey, where’d you get the burrito.

I’m not going to, I’m not going to tell you to go get one.

Phil Rickaby: No, and I I’m likely like, if they’re talking about, oh, that guy has a burrito, I’m probably doing like the dirty look over my shoulder. Like leave me alone. I’m here with my

Jess McAuley: black beam coming out of your mouth too. When you do it, like,

Phil Rickaby: shoot it, shoot a look.

Or just like get away from my burrito. But also like, I’m not gonna, I’m not going to be like, you should go get one. And if they were like, Hey, where’d you get the burrito? I’d be like Chipotle. And I turned around and I’m like, that’s, that’s the end of the conversation. Right. I’m not like Chipotle, like what kind of, what kind of burrito do you like or anything like that?

I’m just going to be like, Here’s the name of the place. Don’t talk to me anymore.

Jess McAuley: You’re going to love the rest of the article

Phil Rickaby: is going to be really productive.

Jess McAuley: Oh. So productive. I loved this. Okay. So the next anecdote right out the gate, I don’t love being alone. So I always give it a go. Yeah. Sometimes things get awkward.

I don’t always walk out of places with new friends. Take Wednesday night. For instance, I went to a trivia night by myself. It was weird and somewhat awful. I surveyed the room for. I surveyed the room looking for a seat. It seemed like everyone had plopped bags and purses everywhere to save seats for their own friends.

But I finally found a free chair with a group of people that seemed friendly. Is it okay if I sit here? Yeah, absolutely go right ahead. Cheerfully relieved. I said, thanks. I’m here alone. So, and I really wish they had taken that as a Q2. Something introduce themselves, ask me if it was my first time here, bring me into the fold.

It was a social event after all, but they didn’t. So I just sat there at the fringe of the table, soaking up the awkward. This is what happens in life. Sometimes it works out. Sometimes it doesn’t sounds like life doesn’t it. And that bothered me.

Phil Rickaby: You know, there’s so much that I know at first off the trivia night is not necessarily.

Event for you. It’s probably a social event for the people who are participating in this, in the trivia. Also like I really feel for the people at the table who were kind of like this person sit there and this person is like, so it’s my first time here. And they’re like, yeah, I go back to their conversation.

Like, they’re not, they’re like, yeah, weirdo.

Jess McAuley: That’s what I was thinking. Like, okay. Going back to the trivia night that I went to. I didn’t participate because I had no one to go with. I just wanted to watch. And I ended up making a pleasant conversation with the people beside me. I had a nice time, but I didn’t have the audacity to sit down at a table wanting to participate and go, Hey, I’m looking for friends.

Want to bring me in extra extroverts. We tend to not adopt you. It’s the other way around

Phil Rickaby: the other way around. And you know, the thing is that like, you’re essentially like you sit down at a table with strange people. They’ve never seen you before. And what it is, it is obvious to them that what you were actually saying is I’m looking for new friends.

Will you be my new friends?

Jess McAuley: That’s not how we make friends. No. Okay. So the next one, it must be exhausting living in Stuart Vice’s world. Now Stewart vice has written a few articles. He’s an introvert. And she specifically referencing the article an introvert’s guide to eat and drinking out which is the art of going to restaurants and dining out for the experience of being there rather than meeting people.

So bringing a book, you bring your iPad or a phone to listen to music and podcasts. So something you and I, Phil has mentioned. We like doing, we like going to these places by ourself. So she says, I suspect this piece appeal to more than just introverts, specifically this generation of shut-ins and socially risk averse folks.

The internet created what he says strikes me as a manifesto, auntie pat taco, which means it’s unfriendly. I don’t think this is something to aspire to. I think it’s lazy and an uninspired way to live. Maybe it’s because I’m a traveler, but I’ve always lived in a different world. I operate with one rule, reach out and say, hello.

It’s led to awesome things for me. For one, I became fluent in Italian just by striking up conversations while living in Milan. I got to have lunch with a former Footner, but JF, which is a football club and incident, this 10 bowl of Turkey, by the way with a former player in Instanbul, just because we started chatting in a cafe, I once got invited.

Just because we started chatting in a cafe. I once got invited for a beautiful weekend in an Austrian village. I’d never heard of all opportunities I had from opening up to people around me, not necessarily extraordinary things, but these memorable events have peppered my life and travels they’ve helped me learn how other people live, expose me to new ideas and perspectives.

They definitely would not have happened if I insisted on looking down.

Phil Rickaby: I would just like to say that I, that as an introvert, we don’t look down, we’re out there. We’re taking in the world in a different way, but we like to shut up about it. I find it like the idea of like it’s exhausting to live in Stuart Vice’s world, because he likes to go to a restaurant by himself.

No, he is not exhausted at all. He’s living his best life by just enjoying the place he’s in reading a book and eating his dinner. This is a beautiful way to do things. As far as an introvert is concerned. When I first started traveling for work I did worry because at a certain point it was, you know, the first few times I traveled you travel on your own.

So I wondered would I feel awkward when I’m in a restaurant, surrounded by other people and I’m alone. And the answer was no, I really enjoyed it.

Jess McAuley: And not only that, it, it didn’t take away from your experience at all and enjoying it just, it doesn’t mean that you didn’t embrace life. No.

Phil Rickaby: And also, like, you know, we’ve talked about traveling as an introvert and it can be a great thing to like, if you’re an introvert, it can be great to travel by yourself.

Yes. It can be fun to travel with somebody else, but it can also be good to travel by yourself. There’s nothing wrong with it. And yes, you had a great opportunity. Avoiding getting murdered by being invited to a weekend in an Austrian Villa village would be what you didn’t know. That’s fine. You didn’t get murdered.

Great. But also, I mean, not Micah.

Jess McAuley: Yeah. The only thing I can really take away from that is even loosely, very loosely. I could take away. Don’t close yourself off to new opportunities, but that doesn’t mean that every single time I go out by myself, I need to say hello. I need to try something because we’re not afraid of being alone.

And again, our definition of friendship and connection changes and it’s different and it’s unique and nuanced. And it sounds as though this person just really likes meeting people for the sake of meeting people. And we don’t, we don’t have to be that way. We don’t, we have to be true to ourselves and nourish what we need.

Phil Rickaby: To me, everything is she’s describing in this article. Sounds very exhausting. I also, I just like looking ahead at the article here, like the first line of the next section is section yes, I’ve gotten weird looks. I’ve been excluded and rejected perhaps by introverts. No 100% by introverts. The way that you’re approaching us is annoying.

Jess McAuley: Absolutely. I’m sorry. When we go out with our group of people, those are our people. We have worked hard to cultivate these relationships. We have put in the time to get to know these people and have connections. We don’t have time to invite other people in because I’m sorry, when I go out, I don’t want to meet new people.

When I’m already with the people, it took me forever to get close to. It sounds

Phil Rickaby: it was a rant. Terrible to say, but you’re absolutely right when I’m out with a group I’m out with those people and nobody else. I’m sorry, but somebody new is not particularly welcome. Especially somebody that essentially is like, hello group of people.

I’m looking for new friends and you look like you’re my new friends. Like, no, no, we’re friends. We let you sit here. I sound terrible. I sound like a terrible person, but

Jess McAuley: though, but that’s the thing is like, we don’t own people, those conversations, it sounds like she’s speaking to a niche group. This is a niche group.

And it’s very, very tiny because I don’t, I personally don’t know very many extroverts that are like this. Have I run into them into the world? Yeah. I’ve probably talked to them on the bus reluctantly, but they’re the ones that struck up the conversation.

Phil Rickaby: You’ve spoken to them with that deer in the headlights, look on your face.

Like, okay, how long do I have to do this? Because I really want to get away from this situation.

Jess McAuley: It’s true. And they walk away like, you know, well, I’m really glad to have met you. And I’m like, yeah, Nice. And it’s like, I just, I don’t want to be your I’m not looking to be your experience. That’s all, I’m not offering you anything.

And that’s what it makes me feel like is I don’t owe you that conversation. You’re impeding on my time.

Phil Rickaby: I just find it difficult. Like the idea of this is this is, this is not a helpful article for introverts. This is certainly, I don’t even know if it’s helpful for extroverts who are probably already like able to make conversation in a way that’s comfortable for them.

But like, this is not a helpful article, certainly for, for our listeners, because except to be entertained by us ranting about it which let’s face it. Why else are you here? But I it’s it’s, it’s like, it’s just not. All I could, all I could think of is I’m looking at this article is how annoyed this person is making me.

Jess McAuley: I did, I did cause you know, misery loves company, but, but it’s no, but really like again, you can, the only thing you can take away is what I had mentioned earlier. Just be open to these things, but again, do it at your introverted pace. So if that means that you’re going to be going to that, that board game cafe, and you’re looking for open table nights, great.

That’s your space. You can go in there because that’s what those nights are meant for. You don’t have to go and strike up conversations with every single person you meet. That pressure should not be on you.

Phil Rickaby: Absolutely. Can I jump in with another example from. Which is like completely like not in juror, please.

She says, start by saying, hello, try this one day, put away the phone and ask somebody for else for the time. Or if they know when the next train is coming, smile, acknowledge the people around you ask for directions or maybe directions to a nearby restaurant. They like, like, yeah, I’m going to tell you the time and then please go away.

Like, yes, I’ll give you the directions, but we’re not friends. Now I’ve given you the direct, the directions. Please go to that restaurant. Just go run along Schuette.

Jess McAuley: This is going to come off mean. She sounds very self-absorbed you

Phil Rickaby: know what she does? She does. It’s like, it seems like she’s of the opinion that the correct way to move through the world is the way that she moves through the world.

And if you are not, you must be having a terrible.

Jess McAuley: Yup. Yup. And I also can see this person tapping on my shoulder and wanting to get in my space while I have headphones in

Phil Rickaby: oh 100%. Yeah. She’ll think you’re doing her a favor. She’s doing you a favor. I’m going to bring this person out of their headphone life and shine.

Like I’m going to bring them up. They’ll see the light. No, I’m wearing headphones for a reason. Yeah. Even if I’m not listening to music, I am. I have these things in for a reason. People like know

Jess McAuley: I thought you’d enjoy this article. I do this for you, Phil.

Phil Rickaby: I appreciate you. Did we learn anything today? Aside from the fact that we do enjoy a good rant,

Jess McAuley: I learned that I’m more in a self-reflection.

I actually do need to. When the time is right, I do need to embrace those public spaces again. Truth be told, I did apply for a a residency, a writer’s residency here in Niagara. So I thought that that would be a good time to actually go out and make some new friends. Whether that be a again, friendly networking acquaintances, or maybe new or artistic friends, like anything I can do to collaborate with people.

Because going on mat leave, I know that the situation might be isolating and it I’m going to need that. So I think I’m reminded that. Should I get into this to embrace it fully and to go annoying every single person? No, I’m just joking, but seriously, to take advantage of the opportunity of being able to go and meet those people in an appropriate

Phil Rickaby: atmosphere.

Yeah. Just remember that, that, like, if you’re doing the activities, you don’t need to force the issue about making friends. If it’s a regular thing, go regularly, or as often as you can, and you will be recognized by people. If you’re there once maybe, you know, maybe people, you know, they’ll interact with you, but when you’re there twice, they’ll start seeing you as more likely to be a regular and that sort of thing.

Like, like let it happen organically rather than trying to force it you’ll have a much better experience, but these are the kinds of things that can really sort of expand as if you need to expand your friend circle. These kinds of things will really help you do that.

Jess McAuley: Absolutely. Tennessee Williams.

And this has been the introvert’s guide to

we’ll know who our real listeners, our next episode. Yeah.

Phil Rickaby: When they start writing in, when they write in to ask about when they address Tennessee Williams we’ll know for sure.

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