When I transferred from Boston to Storrs, I completely underestimated the need to stay in touch with my best friends while I was traveling. I “lived” in the same part of the country as them, why would I need to make specific efforts? Well, fast forward 6 months, home no more than one weekend a semester, and I was wrecked with exhaustion but even worse… I could feel the strain on some of my closest friendships. It’s not that they weren’t understanding, but just like time and miles, silence is just as big a barrier to maintaining our relationships.
Raise your hand if you fail to call the important people in your life because it’s been so long that you have SO much to catch up you wait and wait and wait (read: never end up calling). There’s just never the time for that level of catch up. I’m definitely guilty. But one of my best friends taught me the trick of just Facetiming for five minutes. Literally popping in to say hi and I love you and how was your week. Having short touch bases completely takes the stress off of making “enough time” to “properly” catch up. Who needs properly? Five minutes of seeing your bright smiley face while you’re walking down the street will make you feel closer and keep you in touch.
Our lives are only going to get crazier, which is why it’s so important to figure out what works for you. Staying in touch is an art, it’s a strategy and it’s possible. While you’re not going to keep connected to every single friend, teammate or classmate you’ve ever had, the ones that are important to you should be treated as such. You’ll realize it’s not quite as hard as you thought!