keeping in touch


As much as I say I will, I've always done a poor job at keeping in touch with people when our lives aren't intersecting on the regular. From new friends made at Girl Scout camp to old friends moving across the country with their family, I was a terrible pen pal as a kid. I wanted so badly to be good at it, but it just felt like my life was continuing on, and theirs was too, on separate paths as now-strangers. It's definitely sad to think about the friendships I could have kept if only I had written more letters.

Nowadays, with as many social media sites as our smart phones can handle, it's a lot easier to stay up-to-date on each other's lives. However, social media isn't always the most conducive to actually communicating. I know I'm not the only person who gets messages from long lost friends, just as I'm about to leave for work or go to sleep, and quietly closes my laptop instead of responding. And then I forget to respond altogether. (Ugh, I hope I'm not the only person who does this, because now I sound like a total asshat.)

I wish I were better at keeping Skype dates and sending birthday cards, but I'm just not. In spite of all of my lacking keeping-in-touch habits, I've found a few easy and fun ways to stay in contact with your favorite people.

Group Texts | Keeping a group text going with a couple of friends has been, by far, my favorite way to keep in touch with friends. A bunch of my friends moved away recently, which made me worry we would lose touch. Luckily, we've been utilizing group text to send each other little notes of encouragements, funny stories, and general life updates throughout the day. Sometimes we just vent about work and receive a barrage of kitten gifs to help us keep going. Other times we have a group check-in about what each of us are doing for the weekend and how each other's family's are doing. I am currently participating in four different group texts, and hearing from my different friends is one of the highlights of my day.

Post Cards | Last year, one of my resolutions was about buying stationery and getting awesome about sending letters all the time. I was totally unsuccessful in this. A much easier, more cost-effective snail mail option is mailing fun post cards instead. When I see a post card that reminds me of someone, I can just write them a little note and sent it off to them. It's a nice way to surprise someone and let them know I was thinking of them. Plus, who doesn't love to get something in the mail that isn't bills?

Facebook Groups | When trying to keep in touch with a big group of people, like co-workers who don't work together all the time, the team you played soccer with in college, or alumni of a class you really bonded with, Facebook groups are the way to go. I'm in a handful of Facebook groups where people share articles the members might be interested in, get each other's thoughts of different issues or situations, and just bask in the togetherness of knowing some great, like-minded humans on the Internet. This is also a great way to plan upcoming events--like reunions or even first-time meet-ups!

How do you keep in touch these days?

**ETA: Somehow I forgot to mention Snapchat in this post. Which is weird, because I was probably Snapchatting while I wrote it. Snapchat: the communication of the future.

9 comments

  1. For my best friend who lives in Cali I'd say it's primarily texting that keeps us together. I often though will send her random packages from Amazon with notes that let her know I am thinking about her. I thought, when she moved, that we would skype a lot but we don't at all. I think that's probably because it would require us to be sitting down for a while and that does not happen.
    www.theadoredlife.com

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  2. I do write letters, though don't get many back.

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  3. If you're an asshat, I'm an asshat. I've been really making a point of trying to keep in touch with my old friends, but I do the same thing. Texting and Google Chat/Hangouts have helped me stay in touch with my friend, Emilie, who moved across the country. Other friends are harder to keep in touch with. It's a two-way street.


    Hey, um.................... let's be Snapchat sisters!

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  4. I'm really bad about this too! Actually, in all of the pre and post moving shenanigans, I haven't looked at my Bloglovin feed in I don't know how long and I'm scared to open it because my computer is going to explode. So I typed in your blog address so I could catch up on your posts first without having to go there. Gah. I kind of feel like a dick because I am pretty happy most of the time just to know enough about people based on what they post online, but then sometimes I just see or hear or eat or listen to or watch something that makes me miss someone terribly or makes me think of them and I send them a message out of the blue (I'm sure I've done this to you plenty of times!). I hope people find that nice and comforting, but sometimes I worry that they think it's really weird or something. Oh well. It's the thought that counts!



    -Jen
    yourstrulyjen.com

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  5. I find it easier to keep in touch with people one at a time, so the friends that I don't see often I email. We chat back and forth all the time and it's great to catch up even if we can't see each other in person. I like the idea of group emails! I think I'll have to try that with my college friends!
    ~Sara

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  6. i never find it weird! i think it's one of those feelings we're all familiar with, at least in our age/generation. idk what we'll do when we don't have facebook walls to post things on anymore!

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  7. also, when i came back from Amarillo i had a stupid amount of unread posts on my Bloglovin', so i decided it was a good time to clean out some blogs i don't really read anymore. whoops?

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  8. I'm so glad you wrote about this, because it's something I'm constantly working on, with so much of my family/friends being in CA. It's definitely something you have to continually keep at, and remind yourself. I love making cards, but I have also found that buying cute stationary implores me to send it, because I want to share it!!

    Something I do to keep mailing letters etc: I put in my planner to write to one person, every week or so. Knocking out a letter in between doing other things is not hard! Or plan to knock it out next time you want to read a blog/go on Twitter/email. See how quickly you'll get it done!

    ♥ perfectly Priya

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  9. THANK YOU for writing this, Nicole! I am so, so, so bad at keeping in touch with others, and I hate that about myself. I recently saw this post on Humans of New York, and it spoke to my soul (http://www.humansofnewyork.com/post/93334330436/whats-been-your-greatest-accomplishment). What a wonderful reminder for me to stay in touch with those who are closest to me, right??


    I have five friends who I'm close to. The two who are nearest to me are 15 minutes and 40 minutes away, one is an hour away, and the other two are in California and North Carolina (and I'm in MN, so...yeah...). I find that Facebook makes it so that I generally know what's going on in my friends' lives, but we only put certain things on Facebook, you know? I miss out on all that REAL conversation, the spilling of our joys and heartaches, etc.


    I really appreciated your suggestions on how you've kept in touch with friends - I love the idea of sending postcards to friends! I also want to utilize Facebook groups a little better. My grad school cohort has a Facebook group that we only sometimes use. Perhaps I'll have to get on there more and start some conversation with the girls I've spent the last 2 years of my life with!! :)

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