When I considered a move to Asheville, my mind quickly went to leaving the wonderful friends I would be leaving where I lived for the past 8 years.  My heart sank; boy, I would sure miss them.

But then I realized if I hadn’t taken the chance to relocate with my company and move to Delaware, I wouldn’t have met them in the first place.  I then found it fascinating to go back over my life and think about all the changes in my life that have lead me to find so many wonderful people.  I stopped when I got to Madeline whom I’ve known since I was three.

At a recent relocation workshop I facilitated, several people confessed their biggest concern about moving was making new friends.  One participant repeated a saying I remembered my mother telling me years ago, “It’s hard to make friends when you’re old.”  I’ll admit I even said it myself–but now I realize it is a limiting belief.

I’ve been trying to figure out how this cultural belief evolved.  My friend Marie is 81 and she continues to make friends.  Alice, age 90 who recently moved here to be near her daughter, plays bridge every week with her new friends in the assisted living facility where she lives.

Friendships blossom with a common bond.  Certainly work is a natural breeding ground for friendships since so much time is spent there.  But other places could be church organizations, volunteering, life-long learning classes, etc.  You need to be willing to take a chance and invite them to coffee, lunch or another activity.

As I write this, the girl scout song I learned in my childhood, “Make new friends, but keep the old; one is silver and the other gold” is playing in my head.  How wonderful that along the way some of my silver friends have turned to gold.  I celebrate and value my golden friends and look forward to getting to know my silver friends better.

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