Going into my freshman year, I made a promise with my friends that our relationship would never change, despite all going to different schools. Even though I am a little more than a month into college, I already feel like I have a packed schedule. With all of my friends in either in New York, Massachusetts, or Connecticut, and even one all the way in Greece, I am already learning the best ways to stay in touch with all my friends from home.
1. Schedule time throughout your week or day to communicate
Just like your assignments and extracurricular activities, you need to schedule in time to talk with your friends. Even though we always think we will be get done our assignments early and have the rest of the night free, this is usually not the case. Whether this scheduling be by writing in your planner or making a note on your phone, this is key to help you make time during your busy schedule. To remain close with your friends, you must actually put in the effort because it won’t happen by itself.
2. On your walk to class, call a friend
On those long walks to class when you are by yourself, give yourself some company and call a friend to catch up. This doesn’t have to be a long, in depth conversation. It can simply be about how you almost slept through your 8AM or that you can’t decide what to eat for lunch. This will not only give you something to do on your boring, long walk to class, but it will also most likely brighten your day and your friend’s day by hearing one another’s voices. So next time instead of rushing out the door, leaving just enough time to get to class, leave a little early and call a friend.
3. Plan in advance when you’ll see each other on breaks
The most annoying thing is having such a busy schedule when you go home for breaks that you barely have time to see your friends. An easy solution to this is to exchange schedules of when your breaks will be throughout the year. This way you can plan ahead and compare whose breaks will be overlapping. If not all your friends are off at the same time, try getting together as much as you can and maybe even visit a friend for a night if they go to school somewhat nearby. Try to see as many of your friends as possible during your breaks because face to face interactions will always beat Facetime.
4. Send them cards and/or packages in the mail
Whether it be a care package or simply a letter, this could brighten your friend’s day more than you can imagine. This shows your friends that you are thinking of them and willing to put in the effort to go the extra step than just calling them. It does not have to be an extravagant, expensive gift by any means. A simple handwritten card has the potential to hold so much meaning. Your friends will be reminded of anything from your messy handwriting to your funny anecdotes that never seem to come up in conversation. It’s the little things that are the the most special!
5. Accept the things that you cannot change
As much as you are holding on to that promise you made with your friends that nothing would change, you are bound to drift apart with some people. It may not be the most favorable outcome, but it is the most inevitable. You can put in all the effort in the world, but if they are not reciprocating then you are likely to lose touch. When you realize you are annoyed that your schedules don’t match up, don’t give up. This is an incentive to try harder and remember why you want to keep this friendship with you as long as you can.