Although this may feel slightly odd at first, getting in touch with the right people can absolutely be worth it. Whether you’re into dancing, cooking, playing sports, or fomenting revolution — your town is sure to offer a club that’s right for you. Sure, many of us enjoy working in the comfort of our own living rooms — but to make friends, it’s going to help if you put yourself out there. One of my friends made an (unintentional) new bestie on a dog-walking website in the UK. The premise of these is that busy owners list slots to walk their dogs, and dogless dog-lovers sign up to walk them. The thing is that you never know who you might meet and possibly befriend at such garage sales.

Depending on how long you’re staying in a new place, local charities and nonprofits may offer opportunities to volunteer for weeks at a time. Digital nomads sometimes earn a bad rep for not trying to assimilate and get to know locals, this is the perfect way to make local connections from the start. It may require knowledge of the local language to get your foot in the door, but the opportunities to meet others with common interests while helping a great cause is worth it. Also, interacting with friends online through Tweets, posts, likes, messages, shares, and so on is much faster and simpler than a physical chat.

Attend language classes

Keep an eye out for bulletin boards, flyer stands, and neighborhood groups online that advertise clubs and organizations and submit your own ideas to take the lead. Luckily, even if you’re far away, you can still rely on your existing friends for support. “Getting connected with people who are already connected to your social circle is a great way to plug into the social fabric of a new place.”

While not meeting in person can make it harder to get close, it isn’t impossible. Most of the time you can find at least one person you really like at your company. If there is one person you connect with in the regular virtual meetings or Slack line, reach out and make a plan to meet, virtually or in-person. Even one close friend can turn a work chore into a chance for fun. Looking for one person to connect with can help make a difficult project feel less overwhelming, and help improve your mood and creativity at work.

Turn your solo hobbies into social ones

You don’t need to share deep secrets, but you should try to make interactions about more than just work. But interacting doesn’t always have to mean hopping on a video call. Fill in the gaps by joining conversations in Slack, sharing emoji reactions, and liking social posts. The more you engage with a person, the stronger a professional relationship—and personal friendship—you can build. It was awkward for about a minute, but a single hug later we were picking up in real life where we’d left off online.