15 Proven Tips For Staying Friendless And Alone

broken-friendship-poemsFollowing my recent post about friendship, I thought I’d follow it up with this handy guide to ensuring that you avoid friendship and deep connection with others. It’s proven to work.

1. Assume others will be a hassle

There are three ways to view new people who seek to enter your life.

You can view them as a blank page because you don’t know them yet. You can imbue them with a sense of possibility and potential. Or, and this is what I recommend, you can decide to feel threatened by them.

It helps greatly to make the assumption that this person will be a hassle to you, either as a bore or a burden. Taking this stance from the outset will naturally result in you putting up barriers to friendship with them, and they will be driven away before you even get the chance to know them.

2. Assume that others will reject you for even the smallest of things

If you find yourself liking someone and they seem to like you, make sure you don’t relax into that friendship or there is a real danger of lasting friendship and connection occurring.

Instead, add some anxiety to the mix by believing that you will be rejected at any point. Believe that the friendship is conditional and will end with even the mildest of disagreements.

This will keep you tense and emotionally distant even during time together, and you will become too calculating and strategic to develop true intimacy.

3. Fit in

This is related to the previous tip, but is an important element in the avoidance of close friendships. Never voice your own thoughts, needs or feelings. Be a chameleon.

If they love Coldplay and you loathe them, say instead that you love Coldplay too! Before you know it, you’ll be surrounded by Coldplay fans and spending your time and money at Coldplay gigs.

You’ll soon either lose any desire for the friendship and leave, or you’ll stick around people who you don’t connect with. Either way, it’s a success.

4. Never choose friends – wait to be chosen

There are lots of people just like you in the world. They have your values, enjoy the same pasttimes, talk about the same topics that you love to talk about.

When you meet these people you could very easily take active steps to pursue friendships with them. You could invite them out, ask them round to your place. You’d be choosing them as friends and acting upon that instinct.

Obviously, this would likely result in you being friends as the person will have been hand picked by you and just the kind of person you love hanging out with. So instead, whenever you meet a person you really like, don’t pursue the friendship.

Instead, wait to be picked by others. There’s a better chance that you’ll end up with someone you’re not really suited to or who gets on your nerves, and so there is much less chance of true friendship developing. The moral is, stay passive, be chosen, do not choose.

5. Focus on the differences – not the similarities

Intolerance is a great barrier to friendship. You can nurture yours by focusing on the differences between you rather than the many similarities. Ideally, keep a list of reasons to reject the other person.

View others as a bit thick, think insults about them when they chat to you, castigate them in your mind for mild differences in political views or religious beliefs.

It is helpful at this point to reduce the person to these differences, completely discounting any other positive aspects of their personality, and dismissing them in their entirety.

It ensures that only the perfect have a chance of being close friends with you, and as perfection does not exist, it successfully rules out all possibility of friendship.

6. Have friendships that happen to you

Always treat the process of friendship as something that happens to you, rather than something you can shape. So if a friend wants to do something or go somewhere and you don’t, never mention the fact. Just go along with it passively and grumble about it to yourself.

There is, of course, the option of telling your friend that you don’t want to, but that will only lead to the possibility of doing something that you both really enjoy together.

It also runs the risk of building intimacy and trust through honest sharing of feelings. It is far better to feel bored and unhappy within the friendship as this will more likely lead it to fizzle out.

7. Have no personal boundaries

If a person should fight their way into your life to the point where they regard themselves as a friend, ensure that you maintain no personal boundaries whatsoever.

Refuse to regulate the distance and frequency of the friendship. Let the friend decide this. This has two benefits. Firstly, you will natuarally invite boorish overbearing people into your life as they will pick up the signal that you have no personal boundaries.

But more importantly, it will make you fearful of making new friends. You will lose trust in your ability to regulate friendships to such an extent that you will see all new people as a threat.

The result will be that you will subconsciously strengthen the wall around you. If you do this particularly well, you can hopefully keep everybody out successfully without even trying.

8. Friendship has one model

There are lots of models of friendship. Some will go out on boozy nights out. Others will engage in hobbies together. Some will have friends round to their house. Others don’t bother with friends at all.

Ignore the fact that there are hundreds of friendship models from which to choose. Instead, look at how your parents did it, and follow that blindly.

If you were lucky enough to have parents who didn’t really have friends, or who engaged with friends in a way that you wouldn’t like yourself, even better.

By following that model and acting as if other options were not available to you, happiness from friendship is less likely, and so you are less likely to nurture the friendships that you have.

9. Believe nobody likes you

If you find yourself in the situation where you have found a friend that you like very much, don’t fret. You can still ruin that friendship and turn it into something unpleasant to experience. Here’s how.

Simply tell yourself that they don’t really like you. Assume that they are merely humouring you and that they don’t really want to be spending time with you.

If they appear to be going out of their way to invite you into their company, just remind yourself that they are nice people and are probably just being polite, maybe because they pity you, or for some other dutiful reason.

Always assume that you are constantly teetering on the verge of rejection. This will have great results. It will mean that you won’t enjoy the friendship even though you like the person. It will also mean that you shy away from contact with the person so as to protect them from having to be with you.

10. Don’t belong, don’t be close

This is a really helpful belief to hold if your goal is to avoid friendships and stay alone.

Believe that you are simply not worthy of belonging or being close to others, and then act accordingly. Not only will you reject social invitations, but you won’t make any either.

You will instead seek to protect others from the toxicity that is you, and so you will spend your days isolated and alone, even though others actually like you.

11. Equality sucks

It helps if you don’t engage with the world from a position of equality. Vet newcomers by assuming they are lesser than you until they prove otherwise. This will keep most people at bay as you will prejudicially assume that they are not worth having as friends.

If however they pass that test, then treat them as if they are much better than you and that you are vastly inferior yourself.

Never work from a position of “I’m ok, you’re ok.” That will only lead to healthy well chosen friendships.

Instead, start from a position of “I’m ok, but you’re not.” Then once they’ve proven themselves, switch to a position of “you’re ok, but I’m not.”

12. Walk away the moment things go wrong

Once a friendship has any difficulties, this is your opportunity to walk away. You can do this dramatically or by letting it whither on the vine, depending on your personality. Either way, this will kill the friendship.

Sincerely airing the issue will only risk fixing the friendship and putting it on an even stronger footing than before. So if you spot a difficulty, run for the hills. This is your big chance to lose the friendship. Don’t miss it.

13. Never be you

Don’t be you. After all, you’re not worth knowing and nobody wants you. (If you don’t believe that, start believing it. It’s key to evading friendship).

Be someone else instead. Then work so hard at maintaining the facade that the friendship exhausts you.

By not being yourself, the people who would make fabulous friends will be with other people just like you, but somewhere else. And you’ll be surrounded by people you have nothing in common with.

This is an effective tip because, even if they don’t spot that you’re faking it, you’ll lose such enthusiasm for the friendship that you’ll gradually stop coming out to play. Before long, you won’t be friends anymore.

14. Stay hidden

Friendship is a nourishing, intimate relationship between two people. Things like openness and trust will only deepen your friendships. So stay hidden.

Keep your cards close to your chest. When a friend asks you something that would reveal something personal and key to who you are, clam up and get defensive.

Remember, if you don’t completely reveal yourself, you can never be completely loved and appreciated. Don’t share the most vulnerable parts of yourself as this can only lead to genuine intimacy and lasting friendship.

15. Choose fear over togetherness

Friendships can often feel difficult, especially if you’re following any of my tips above, but even if you’re not. This difficulty can lead to feelings of fear and anxiety when friends ask for your company.

Here you have two options, choose togetherness or choose fear. If you choose togetherness then you’ll work past your fear and do it anyway. But this will only lead to lasting friendships.

So instead, give in to the fear and stay alone. Make up an excuse to save face if you need to, but let the fear win. Togetherness is the oxygen of lasting friendships. Don’t succumb to it.

So….

So that’s my 15 proven tips for avoiding friendship and living a lonely life. Follow these and you’ll be sure to be alone and miserable. Good luck!

Comments

  1. Dave Williams - December 1, 2013 @ 9:06 pm

    AFC Liverpool have a home game saturday, Alun. Just saying, like. :)

  2. alunparry - December 1, 2013 @ 9:07 pm

    Alas, I am in Manchester on Saturday studying like a studious person. This isn’t even me following my own advice above. It’s true. I follow the results each game and always have. Good luck Satdee. Nice to hear from you too Dave.

  3. Dave Williams - December 1, 2013 @ 9:10 pm

    Oh well that is a great shame. We play Bootle on Boxing Day. Now don’t be telling me you are studing that day! Keep safe, Alun.

  4. alunparry - December 1, 2013 @ 9:16 pm

    Home or away?

  5. Kate - December 1, 2013 @ 9:37 pm

    You know you could stay at ours if you ever have to go to Manchester . We have a sofa bed, a great shower/bath and guaranteed no weird housemates. You would be welcome

  6. Dave Williams - December 1, 2013 @ 10:11 pm

    Alun, AFC Liverpool are at Bootle’ s place on Boxing Day.

  7. alunparry - December 1, 2013 @ 11:31 pm

    Hi Kate, I’m staying with a lovely fellow student when in Manchester, but should that ever not be possible I’d love to stay with you. Thanks tons x

  8. David Martin - December 2, 2013 @ 11:15 am

    More helpful hints to avoid inadvertently turning strangers into friends:-
    • avoid eye contact at all times
    • respond sarcastically to attempted social chat
    – e.g.(1) It’s cold today / You don’t say, Einstein
    – e.g.(2) Good morning / What’s so good about it/ [the old proven classic]
    • have an intimidating appearance – for a man this might include combat gear (boots, camouflage trousers and jacket, beanie), a bushy beard, dark glasses worn at all times, and the company of a Staffordshire Bull Terrier
    • have loud, animated conversations with yourself, occasionally punctuated with wild, uncontrolled laughter

  9. alunparry - December 2, 2013 @ 11:28 am

    Haha. Good tips David. They will all help add to the armoury.

  10. morag - December 4, 2013 @ 8:15 pm

    Hahaha I love this. I’ve not responded to the previous post yet, which I have realised relates directly to a possible 16th tip. Don’t prioritise friendship in your life. Treat it as something that just happens (see above) and if you fail to feel fear of boredom/exposure & find yourself genuinely comfortable & interested/ing, here’s what to do……Be incredibly busy with other things, forget completely about that friendship while distracted by nothing in particular. Then, when your flighty brain finally remembers, you’ll feel guilty & awkward – and as a bonus, the friend may feel somewhat let down & uncared for. Keep practising this handy lack of focus, while occasionally wringing your hands bemoaning your lack of consistent connection. This will help to fuel self doubts (see above) creating a perfectly vicious 360 degrees & ensuring you never actually consistently prioritise the thing you say you want. Et voila! A tiny personal realisation. I think I’m partly just too butterfly-trained!

  11. morag - December 4, 2013 @ 8:20 pm

    Brained, not trained!?!

  12. alunparry - December 5, 2013 @ 11:59 am

    Hi Morag

    It’s interesting isn’t it. We get what we choose. So if I’m in a position where I don’t have the deep, connected friendships I want, it is because I have committed myself to not having them, even if I’ve done that out of awarness.

    Your example is a great illustration of that. How we can end up prioritising other things until the friendships are no longer there.

    My question would be, why?

    Why are you prioritising other things over connection and friendship? What is it about the things that you do prioritise that you treat as more important than your friends?

    What are these things that you become busy about, too busy for your friends? What psychological hook are you hanging from when you decide to do all your other busy things?

    I know for instance, that when I’ve avoided friends, at root is the fact that the process isn’t relaxed because part of me is still trying to prove myself. The proving of myself is hard work, and who chooses hard work?

    At other times, I’ve overwhelmed myself with work I felt I “should” be doing, and I’ve had to assess what the “should” was about. Who was I really trying to please? Why was I attempting to single handedly save the world?

    Al

  13. Morag - December 5, 2013 @ 8:41 pm

    Oooh. Why? Pondering. Will try not to get sidetracked before replying….

  14. Den - March 31, 2017 @ 2:20 pm

    I’m a fellow musician and a friendless loser. I’ll never have any real friends because. Pff dunno I just have always had few or no friends. I’m not good at friendships.i suck at keeping in touch and I have zero social skills, sometimes I feel like it’s autism or sometime similar, IV become quite bitter and resentful of people at times I’m afraid. It’s a shame because me music would be much better with a full band. Oh well. Anyway I was reading that a growing percentage of people consider themselves friendless. What do you think about that?

  15. alunparry - March 31, 2017 @ 5:28 pm

    Hey Den

    Other than the ability to form a band more easily, how do you feel about not having friends? Is it something that saddens you, or are you fine with it?

    Al

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