Heading off for college is a huge milestone in your life, and for many, it’s the first experience away from home for an extended period of time. Many of your friends will have taken off on their own journeys after school, and summer holidays are usually the first chance you’ll all have to reconnect.
While the digital age may keep us together online, it’s all too easy to grow apart and let old friendships fizzle. Since we’re able to see what friends are up to through shared posts, we lose the need to actually check in with them. As a result, you may find it harder to reconnect when you’re both home again. Here are some tips to help you out.
First things first: Make plans with your friend. The best way to reconnect is to see each other in person and spark that relationship back up. Yes, your friendship may have changed, and it can be nerve-racking meeting up with someone you have lost touch with. But the best way to reconnect is to dive straight in and do it.
Keep it simple. Forget about the activities you might have enjoyed together in the past, such as movies, or bowling, and instead, organize a coffee date. It’s casual and gives you the perfect chance to chat and catch up without any distractions.
Find Shared Interests
Whether you are both students looking for housing or on the hunt for a summer job in your area, try to find a common interest with your friend. Just because you are going to different colleges or have chosen different paths doesn’t mean there won’t be some crossover along the way. It can be all too easy to focus on how your lives differ, rather than looking for the similarities. The differences are what set you apart, but these small similarities are what will bring you back together.
Show an Interest
As well as finding shared interests, it is also important to show an interest in your friend’s new life. There is no denying that things will have changed for you. Instead of getting caught up in sharing your experiences and what you have been doing, be sure to stop and ask your friend what they have been up to and show genuine interest. Just because this new life doesn’t involve you isn’t a reason to avoid it. When you ask questions, the conversation will flow much better and won’t end up one-sided. It also gives you a better reason to catch up again in the future, as it shows that even though you have both gone your separate ways, you still care about one another.
Keep In Touch
While you may have lost touch when you first parted ways, now is a good time to make plans to keep the communication open. Instead of relying on social media to bridge the gap in your lives, consider picking up the phone once a month, or go back to the old days of snail mail and write letters to each other. Who doesn’t love receiving something in the mail?
Friendships take work. With the distractions of college, assignments, internships, jobs, and of course, new friendships, it can be hard to find the time to nurture your old friendships. But remember, if they are a good friend you want to keep in your life, then it’s important to reconnect as much as possible. With the tips above, you can find that connection again and continue to maintain it over the years.