You can fall into the wrong crowd while making friends at school, but there are ways to find the right ones Friends are an integral part of teenage life. What would you do without them? When it comes to making new friends, it's important to know what type of people you connect with best. Tips on choosing great friends Keep in mind that you become like the people you hang out with. There's an old saying: 'He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a friend of fools suffers harm.' Time and time again I have heard about teens who move away from home to attend college and get mixed up with the 'wrong' crowd. Many of them have told me it was because they didn't fit in at college. Or they had no friends and chose to fit in somewhere rather than nowhere. The problem is that you will become exactly like the people you hang out with. If your friends skip classes and party all night, you, too, will follow. It may not happen overnight, but you will slowly feel left out and end up copying what your friends are doing just so you can fit in. There are ways to help you find friends who match up with the person you would like to be. Write a list of qualities you would like to have in a friend. Spend the first couple of weeks at school/university simply meeting people and choose friends who have the qualities you have listed. By not rushing to fit into a group, you will have the chance to get to know people well and find out if they match with the type of person you want to be. When you hang out with new people, ask yourself: 'Does this person motivate me and inspire me to move forward?' Or: 'Does he/she take me away from my values and the type of person I want to be?' If the answer is the latter, then the person lacks the qualities you want in a friend. Set your boundaries Before you enter university or a new school, set your limits around the type of behaviour you will or will not condone. By setting your boundaries beforehand, it will mean that when a sticky situation arises, you won't need to make a quick decision on the spot. Be a friend The best way to find friends is to first be a great friend. Other people will also be seeking friends who are like them, so try being a friend to someone without expecting anything in return. Fieldwork Complete these three steps: Make a friendship qualities list, set boundaries and be a friend.