Wednesday, October 25, 2017

How To Keep In Touch With Friends After Graduation

If you read Monday's post you probably saw that Furman had homecoming this past weekend judging by the abnormal number of pictures I posted in my Step Into My Week. While it was great to see and catch up with everyone there were parts of homecoming that were a bit odd. For starters, I do not feel far enough removed from graduation to be considered an alumni. In addition to that, now that homecoming has passed it seems weird to not know a definitive time when I will see some of the people I went to school with again. When we graduated it was pretty much understood that we would all be back on campus for homecoming but now with no set plans it's a little bit more odd. I've always been the type of person who cares more about the quality of friends I have than the quantity which has certainly made keeping up with all my friends a bit easier. It also doesn't hurt that so many of my friends are still in Greenville with me and that I am able to see them pretty frequently.

I know that some people aren't quite as lucky to still have so many friends nearby to them in their post-grad city, and I definitely don't have all of my friends right here with me (although I often wish that I could). Fortunately, technology makes it pretty easy to stay in touch with one another when distance cuts in. I was able to figure that out for my own after graduating high school and heading to college 8 hours from home, but as I've gotten older I think I've become a lot more intentional when it comes to keeping up with my family and friends that are farther away. Below I've shared some different tips I have for keeping in touch with friends after graduation! 

Make the first move (even if it has been a while).
The first step is the one you are probably most reluctant to take and with no reason. The gesture won't go unnoticed and shows your friend how intentional you are and how much you value the friendship. It doesn't have to be anything to formal just a nice thinking of you.

Call them.
My personal favorite! When you haven't talked in a few weeks there is just no way to say all you need to say through text. So they don't answer? A cheery voicemail updating them or inquiring when you can chat will surely excite them. If you are both super busy phone tag may be a result but when you finally catch each other it will be worth your while!

Write them a note.
I am quite the fan of snail mail. Pretty stationery with a sweet note always make their way to be displayed on my bedside table. I may just be a hoarder in the sense that I save letters people write to me. Especially when a note is a surprise it's hard not to be excited about getting mail from a good friend.

Make plans to see each other (when you will be in the same place).
Thanksgiving break can't come soon enough. I am counting down the hours until I get to head home to see my parents for the first time since August (are we ok with counting them as friends?) and also see some of my friends from high school! By having set in stone plans seeing long distance friends becomes much more of a reality and gives you something to look forward to.

Send them a gift just because. 
All of my friends say that my love language is giving gifts and I would have to agree with them on that. I just adore treating friends and can't think of a more caring way to show some one they are being missed. Whether it is flowers, cupcakes / macarons, or a busy week survival kit the thought of this is the perfect pick me up.

Utilize social media. 
While I am not a huge fan of expressing every feeling you've ever experienced on social media surprising a friend with a notification is always fun. Tag them in something you know they would laugh at on instagram or send them a snapchat of something that reminded you of them. It doesn't have to be extravagant but it will definitely make them feel like you were thinking about them.

Text exciting details of your day.
I always end up leaving details out when I am recapping on the phone with friends so by sharing details as they happen I am more likely not to leave anything out. I also am a huge fan of sharing stuff you know they would think is funny with them through text! Phone calls can remain for the long winded stuff but a text during the day is always a fun surprise. 

Make it a priority to keep in touch with them.
Life happens. I know that but it doesn't take much effort to show someone you care and the small amount of effort usually translates to a large amount of emotional connection due to the smallest of gestures.

While it is definitely an adjustment and will be different for everyone keeping in touch with friends after graduation doesn't have to feel hard or like a chore. I know that for me personally I am always in a good mood after spending some time catching up with my friends whether they are in a different state or live here in Greenville with me but I haven't seen them in a bit. Everyone is busy but my guess is you won't regret taking the time to catch up with a friend!

I'd love to hear any other tips you may have for keeping up with far away friends especially since I still would like to consider myself to be pretty new to the post-grad world! 

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