Michelle Chalfant | The Adult Chair | 355 – Cultivating Friendships as an Adult with Dr. Marisa G. Franco
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355 – Cultivating Friendships as an Adult with Dr. Marisa G. Franco

There is an old Irish proverb that says, “A good friend is like a four-leaf clover; hard to find and lucky to have.” 


While some people thrive in a big group and others prefer to have a few close friends, there isn’t a human on the planet who doesn’t need friends! 


But making friends seems to get harder as we get older. Gone are the days of finding a BFF because you happened to sit next to each other on the school bus. Friendship in adulthood takes intentional effort.


In this episode, I talk to psychologist and friendship expert, Dr. Marisa G. Franco, about how to create deep, meaningful relationships as an adult. We talk about why love is so much more than just romantic partnerships, how our attachment style impacts our friendships and the “recipe” for a deep friendship. 


Dr. Franco shares lots of practical tips on how to feel more confident in social situations, places to make new friends, conversation starters and how to get over the fear of rejection. 


Listen to discover:


  • The importance and power of friendship
  • How your attachment style impacts how you make friends
  • How to make friends as an adult
  • The ingredients required for organic friendships to form
  • The “liking gap” and how it impacts the way we show up with others
  • A method for initiating conversation 
  • Why you shouldn’t fear rejection 


Though busy schedules, family commitments and adult responsibilities can make friendship more difficult, connection really boils down to two things: repeated interactions and shared vulnerability. When we understand this, along with our own attachment style, we can take conscious steps to find our people – no matter where we are in life.


“How we’ve connected has shaped who we are…then who you are affects how you connect.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“Research finds, for example, that even learning about attachment theory shifts your attachment a bit.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco

“Being secure is not about never feeling insecure. It’s about having an alternative secure voice too and leaning into or buying into the more secure side of you.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“That’s one of my biggest tips when it comes to making friends: assume people like you when it’s ambiguous.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“When we really work with our attachment styles, it can really just change the whole way we see the world.” – Michelle Chalfant


“If you’re an adult and you don’t have that [infrastructure for meeting new people] anymore, you can’t assume it’s going to happen organically. You have to try.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“Find a community that’s going to give you repeated unplanned interaction and shared vulnerability.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“You also have to overcome covert avoidance. And covert avoidance is our tendency to show up physically but check out mentally.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“People are less likely to reject you than you think.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“It’s not so much about what you say. It’s about the fact that you are opening up conversation.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“Rejection is just part of the process of connection.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“I think we need to remind ourselves too that if someone doesn’t like us, it might have nothing to do with us.” – Michelle Chalfant


“I think there are so many ways that sometimes what we think is a rejection, the other person is actually thinking of as consideration.” – Dr. Marisa G. Franco


“Oftentimes, it’s not about us. It’s about something that other person is going through.” – Michelle Chalfant





Dr. Marisa G. Franco Website



“Platonic” (Dr. Marisa G. Franco book)



Dr. Marisa G. Franco Instagram



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