By Lisa Sugarman

Friendship… we all crave it, we all need it, and we all benefit from it, no matter who we are or where we are in our lives. That’s because, at our basic core, people need people for love and support and guidance and companionship. And nobody craves that more than a mom. Because, at its basic core, motherhood is stressful and exhausting and isolating AF. And no one understands that more than another mom. The sad truth is, though, that most moms barely have time to toss their hair up in a messy bun on their way out the door, let alone shop around for new mom friends.

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But mom friends are exactly what every mama needs in their life. Because our mom friends are the ones who really, truly get what it’s like to be a mom, every minute of every day. We know what it’s like to be puked on or screamed at or nagged until we cry. Only another mom knows what it’s like to re-wear the same black yoga pants for three days because there’s just no time to make laundry a priority. And we’re the ones who know what it feels like to finally fall asleep at four forty-five in the morning, only to have our kid wake up for the day at stupid o’clock.

Truth is, what we all desperately need is a tribe of mamas who get us and can support us and can talk us off the ledge when we’ve got one foot dangling over the edge. The problem is, finding and making new mom friends can be a major time suck because most of us are so crazy-busy dealing with the day-to-day of life and keeping our kids alive that we just don’t have the bandwidth to mom-date.

Just go to the App Store and download the app for free.Taking time out of a jam-packed day to look for friends in places like the park or the library or at playgroups is just too tough in today’s world. Like, even if we could fit in getting out and putting ourselves out there, there’s still no guarantee that we’ll find someone we click with. And there’s the awkwardness of putting ourselves out there to total strangers and worrying about being rejected. Because that just sucks.

So what moms really need is to streamline our approach to making friends and harness all of today’s technology to help us connect with the other mamas around us. Because if singles can use things like dating apps to find love, then moms can damn well use mom apps to mom-date.

Here are six simple steps to help you find your next mom friend:

Step 1 Find and download a friendship app like SocialMama, the free networking app for moms that takes all the heavy lifting out of finding friends. Because, technology.

Step 2 Register as a new user on SocialMama and get busy building your profile. In less than five minutes, you can create a profile that shows other mamas who you are and what you’re looking for in a new mom friend. That way, you can let people know if you’re looking for a walking buddy or someone to collaborate with professionally or another mama who also likes a good pinot noir.

Step 3 Start engaging! Login to SocialMama and start navigating through features like Footprints, their community newsfeed, and see what other mamas around you are up to every day. Or, go straight to the Around Me screen where you can see all the other mamas in your area. Then check out what they’re doing and what they like, and discover which special interests you have in common.

Step 4 Connect. Once you start vibing with another mom, send her a private message and connect. Or, if you’re a little on the shy side and you want SocialMama to help you make the first move, use their Mama Matching feature and let their technology tell you who you’re compatible with based on your shared interests. They’ll even help you break the ice with some fun get-to-know-you questions.

Step 5 Start the conversation! Reach out, start posting and commenting and engage with the other moms in the app community. Then, take a risk and use SocialMama’s messaging feature to DM a mom in your area whose interests match yours.

Step 6 Make plans and meet your new mom friend in the flesh. Once you’ve gotten to know each other on the app, take it into the real world and plan a mama meetup where you can cement your new connection.

It’s really that easy. Or at least it can be.

The technology is out there, ladies! Now it’s our turn to use it!

Lisa Sugarman is the Director of Community Outreach at SocialMama, the networking app for moms everywhere. She’s also the author of It Is What It Is, the nationally syndicated opinion column and the author of LIFE: It Is What It Is and Untying Parent Anxiety: 18 Myths That Have You in Knots—And How to Get Free, available on Amazon, at Barnes & Noble, and at select bookstores everywhere. And Lisa is a regular contributor at GrownAndFlown.com, Hot Moms Club, LittleThings.com, MommingHub.com, More Content Now, Wickedlocal.com, and Care.com. Read and discuss all her books and columns at lisasugarman.com.

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