Okay so who doesn’t love a Kim Possible reference? I remember being at a doctors appointment and another girl in the waiting room had the same ringtone as Kim Possible. The jealousy quickly ensued, and to this day I still wish I had that awesome tone for my own phone. I mentioned in a previous post how much I value my amazing friends, even though most of them live across the country and the world. This can make it pretty tricky to stay in touch. However, I have found a few tried and true methods that help to sustain my long distance friendships. So here it goes… my tips to staying in touch with faraway friends!
1. Old School
I mentioned in my post on thank you notes how much I love handwriting notes. Sending a friend a personalized note not only makes them feel special, but it is also a nice break between all the emails/text/Facebook messages etc. we receive on a daily basis. I love sending “Thinking of You” cards because there doesn’t have to be a special occasion, simply that you miss your friend!
Snapchatting friends is such a fun way to send a quick message or a smile to a friend who lives far away. I use this mode of communication the most with my Australian friends who always send me funny videos that I wake up to in the morning (because of the time difference!). Now that Snapchat has added a text/chat feature you can also write longer messages alongside your funny faces and 10 second videos!
The quickest, easiest, and cheapest form of communication, email is a great way to keep up on your friends lives. Make sure to email your friends through your personal email accounts, not your work email. You don’t want to get distracted at work by your friend’s latest drama with a new guy or constant group chain messages.
4. Phone Calls
Although text is a great way to communicate to set up appointments or send a quick hello, phone calls allow for so much more. Talking to friends over the phone is often overlooked, especially by a generation that prefers typing rather than actually communicating. With friends who you have tons to catch up on, set up a time to talk over the phone, it has a way of reconnecting even the most distant of friends.
*Beware conversations with an old friend have a habit of going on for hours!*
Similar to phone calls this form of communication has the added bonus of seeing your friends. Every few weeks I Skype with my friend Tara in DC and it is always so much fun to see her face and talk for hours! Similar to phone calls I tend to give myself more time to Skype because I know that catching up will be much longer than a quick text conversation.
6. Planes, trains, and automobiles
There are tons of ways to visit friends who don’t live down near you. Consider taking a weekend trip to see a few familiar faces. It doesn’t have to be a huge adventure, just a few days together. I have found that my favorite moments are sitting with my friends over a glass of wine and simply catching up on all the things we have missed in each others lives.
7. TV & Movies
Several of my friends are in long distance relationships and regularly watch their favorite TV shows and movies with their boyfriends, while on the phone. Instead of catching up after the premiere of your new favorite fall TV show, call your friend so you can watch it together. It is really fun to laugh or gasp at the same things and make fun of all the ridiculous commercials.
8. Be Honest
If you know that you are starting a new job or will have a very crazy week, give your friends a heads up so they know why you are taking so long to respond to them. On the opposite end, if you are going through a difficult time and really need a friend, tell them and keep those lines of communication open. It is difficult for anyone to truly know how you feel through emails or texts, so if you need a friend tell them, don’t be subtle!
9. Things Change
It is inevitable that things will change now that you and your friends are no longer minutes away from seeing each other. With new adventures comes changes, which can cause friendships to shift. If you recognize that change will happen, it is less startling or upsetting when it does. However, if both people are willing to put time and energy into their friendships, they will last a lifetime. That may sound kinda corny, but its true!
Keeping in touch with friends who don’t live near you is certainly not an easy task. Remember that friendship is a two way street and that both people need to be willing to keep the relationship going. With so many different options to choose from I hope this inspires you to reconnect with an old friend!