How to make friends in English~ブリティッシュカウンシルで友人を作った方法

Today’s post is about my story to make friends in British Council. Nothing special. But I am happy if it would be useful for somebody.

本日は、British Councilでどのように友人を作ったのか書いておきたいと思います。ありふれたことしかしていませんが、誰かの背中を押すことができれば幸いです。

One of the big concerns of Japanese who live overseas is how to make friends in English. As you know, our official language is Japanese, not English. And Japanese language is far different from English. If you start learning English since you become adults, learing English is not easy. Especially we struggle to speak English. I believe many Japanese are not confident on speaking.

10 years back, I took annual leave and went to Vancouber, Canada. The purpose was studying English. I have studied English for only two weeks. During this short journey, I competely understood I was not such a person who proactively and spontaneously talk to people, enjoy chatting and join social activities. This was my firts time to spend some time overseas. I felt isolated and wanted to go back to Japan immediately. The school teacher suggested not to be shy and encourage me to join social activities. Eventually I couldn’t make friends.


Back to now. How did I make friend? The answer is very simple:

  • Do not hesitate to talk with others.
    Honestly in the first term, it was difficult to make friends as most students were confident on their English and I was not confident on my English. But unlike 10 years back, I tried to find the person who were interested with Japanese culture and some students worked for Japanese company. In addition, I would like to show my interest with their culture: Indonesia and India etc. In the second term, I felt like I was more confident on speaking English. This time I tried to show what I was interested with and luckly unlike the first term, most of classmates were very friendly so we exchanged our number and finally had a Takoyaki Party.
  • Go and do social activities. If you have a shy and a withdrawn personality but you want to make friends, then try to overcome your concerns.
    I started small things: just try to share the interesting news or how my work was going etc during the short break. Firstly it was enough, after being used to it, you could go and dine out with classmates. Although I needed to go back home right after class, I could enjoy the chatting and the party. Luckly there was one guy who was very positive to organise the social such as dinner. He suggested the exchange of our numbers.


  • 会話をすることを怖がらない


  • ソーシャルアクティビティに参加する

After all, there are many chances to make friends in English. For example, Meetup apps. You can find and create the local community for what you are interested in, such as Yoga class, dance class or badminton etc. And you can also join online group page., For me, I join the Facebook group page of our condo. Throught the FB posts, I can know what events would be held.

Hoever please do not forget you should be yourself. No needs to change yourself just to make friends. If you feel like tired to look for friends, do not pursh yourself. Sometime we feel like we want to avoid second-language conversation. It is quite common. If you can’t make frinds till the last day of the class, please do not disappointed with yourself and remember the beautiful saying that trees lost their leaves every year and they still stand tall and wait for better days to come.

ここまで英語での会話から友人を作る方法について書いてきました。でもここで強調しておきたいのは全然自分を変える必要はないということです。第2言語で話すのは本当に疲れるので、疲れた時は休みましょう。英語で会話する必要はないと思えばそれでいいと思いますし、日本人同士で固まることは当たり前のことです。うちの会社をみてもインドネシア人同士、インド人同士、ベトナム人同士で固まってランチに行きますし、母語グループが形成されるのは極めて自然だと思います。英会話のクラス最終日にもしランチやディナーに行く友人ができなくても、どうってことないです。You should be yourself. 自然体で参りましょう。


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