There’s a famous saying, “Strangers are just friends you haven’t met yet” and maybe, that has some truth to it.

In Monash, we tend to see the same faces every day. Maybe it’s when we’re on our way to class or maybe we study in an area that’s full of people we don’t know.

As more time passes, if we go to the same area, we’ll end up recognizing the people we see every so often, building up some familiarity with them.

Though, I’m sure everyone, at least once in their life, has hesitated to actually approach these people.

We’d think about doing it but never actually proceeding with the idea – probably because we think they’re too busy to make friends, that they have something better to do and don’t need people bothering them, or the typical (if you think they’re good looking): Maybe they’re already seeing someone.

All these assumptions are valid; you probably have a reason behind this thought of yours. But here’s the thing: You never really know till you actually talk to them, right?

I’ve experienced this last semester when I was so hesitant to approach this guy because I was never sure if he even knew of my existence. However, when I did approach him, he mentioned that he has noticed me around- we’re friends now, I think?

Talking to people can be scary, especially when you know almost nothing about them. But then again, isn’t that the fun of it?

Getting to know new people, learning about their stories, perhaps both of you will have a lot in common.

There are different ways to actually approach these people, one of the more so called “natural ways” of doing it is by smiling at them when you make eye contact.

It’s a small start but a good and friendly one. Smiling at people reassures them that you’re not judging them or that you might have a bad impression on them.

You could also try to approach them if they look like they’re not too occupied and strike up a conversation, make a good first impression.

If they mention that it’s their first time seeing you, that’s, fine, isn’t it? It shouldn’t bother you because there might be other people on campus who’ve noticed you but you haven’t noticed them either.

If the person you want to befriend is in an activity or performance, you could always go up them when they’re done and go, “You did great! Congratulations!”

Making friends is a long process, sometimes you never really know where you stand with that person – an acquaintance? A schoolmate? A classmate? A new friend? A person whom they’ve just had one conversation with?

If you’re not happy with your current relationship with them, take the initiative and try to get closer to them. Don’t force it though, no bond should be forced. Let things develop naturally and mutually.

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