After moving away from friends and family, whether for college, for a better job, or to be with someone you love, we often tend to lose touch with our near and dear ones. Because of the miles of physical separation, you start to drift apart. But it doesn’t always have to be this way. Just because you live in different time zones doesn’t mean that you have to stop being close to someone.
Moving away from people you love can be heartbreaking and sometimes can even trigger relocation depression. But with a bit of an effort you can easily stay in touch with your friends and family. Here are a few things you can do to keep in touch, even after moving to another city, another state, or even another country:
Scheduled phone calls
When you move away, what often happens is that you keep “meaning to call” your friends and family but you never do. Something more important or urgent comes up and you put off talking with your loved one. As a result, you start losing touch with that person, and within a few months, you’re completely out of touch and feel awkward to initiate conversation.
So, to avoid this, have a standing appointment with your loved ones. You could talk every Thursday night, or on the first of every month. Just include talking to your friends and family to your weekly calendar and stick to it.
Thanks to technology, you can talk to someone from the other side of the world, as if they were in the same room. Applications like Skype, Facetime, Google Hangouts, OoVoo and many more give you the option to video chat with someone over the internet. Not only you can talk to them, you can also see them in person as you do so. It gives a sense of intimacy to the whole interaction and helps you stay close to your loved ones.
Another way of staying in touch with friends is by stay active on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. Post pictures and statuses about what you’re up to. Check your newsfeed regularly and see what your friends have been doing. Even if you don’t have time to talk to them via phone or chat, just posting something on their wall or commenting on their status will let them know that you’re thinking of them. And Bonus – next time you see each other, instead of starting with the obligatory and awkward “what have you been up to”, you can talk to them about something they wrote on their wall or a trip they posted pictures of. “So, how was Rome?” works way better as a conversation starter than “What’s up?”
Text / Chat
If you are not addicted to texts and chats by now, you are not from 21st century. Currently, the most popular way of staying in touch with someone is by texting them. It’s short, sweet and immediate. And if you are one of those people who find it hard to convey emotions over written words, you have a whole plethora of emoticons and stickers to choose from. In fact you can even have entire conversations only using emojis. Also, when it comes to conveying strong emotions, NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF ALL CAPS!!!!! You can also save money on texts by using free messaging apps like Whatsapp or Viber.
Email is a great way of staying in touch with someone long distance. You can be as detailed or as brief in your email as possible. Neither one word emails nor 5 paragraph emails look out of place. You can also email someone or respond to their email in your own sweet time. Chats and texts might need to be acknowledged immediately, but there is no such obligation when it comes to email.
Send gifts and cards
Another great way of staying in touch with old friends and loved ones is by sending gifts and cards on their birthdays, Christmas and other occasions. Unlike previous options, it is rather low tech and fairly simple. All you have to do is mail in a card (and a gift if you like) to your friends and family on their birthdays and major holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving. And if you have any confusion as to what to send, you can just ask your mom.
Plan a reunion
While calling, texting, emailing and video chatting are great ways to keep up with your old friends, nothing beats meeting them in person and interacting face to face. So, try and meet with your loved ones at least once a year. You can meet your family on Christmas, Thanksgiving or some other holiday. And as for old friends, plan a weekend getaway and catch up with them. You can rehash all your old memories while you create new ones.
Moving doesn’t have to be the end of your friendship. You can stay in touch and be involved in each other’s lives even if you live halfway across the world. All you have to do is put in a little bit of extra effort. Just a call or even a simple text when you’re missing them can do wonders for your relationship.
Tell us how you stay in touch with your friends and family in the comments below…