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Moving to college, getting a job, growing up, and being loaded with numerous responsibilities leaves us with minimal time to check in on our friends. Being this busy is the main reason we lose touch with those people from our past. We need to let go of some of them for our own personal growth, but for others, we may wish we reached out to more.

It is refreshing to catch up with old friends, laugh over good memories, and grab a cup of coffee every once in a while. We need these connections to remind us of where we come from and who we are. Seeing these familiar faces in person is the best way to keep in touch, but if you can’t physically see them, send them a message instead. 

With the amount of social media we have today, keeping in touch with people is so much easier. It is as simple as sending them an Instagram post or Tik Tok that reminds you of them. There are also those Snapchat “1 year ago, today” memories. Most of the time, they are happy memories, and sending them to that person could brighten their day or strike up a conversation. So why not send it to them? Reminisce on being young. 

One of my personal favorite things to do is send a song. If I hear an old song that a friend and I used to listen to a lot, I reach out to that person. I either send them the song, tell them I just heard it, say I’m thinking of them, or I hope they’re doing well. It is as simple as that.

Other times, when I see my friend’s favorite artist released new music, I message them to ask what they think of it. Doing this can show someone you remember their favorite artist and you are still curious about their opinions. This is so thoughtful and I wish people would do it more often – for more than just music!

A slightly depressing song, but you get the point. Jeremy is greater than all.

Sending them something that makes you think of them, like the options above, is the easiest thing to do. However, if you really have the time, send an actual text. Ask them how they are, how a certain aspect of their life is going, or what they have been up to recently. This can end up being a short conversation, or the reason you rekindle a friendship. If it turns out to be a great conversation, it allows you and this friend to catch up, possibly make plans and give them the encouragement to reach out to you too. 

Whether the conversation is lasting or not, it is truly the thought that counts in this situation. Reaching out to someone shows effort and it goes a long way. I know it brightens my day to see an old name pop up on my phone.

These connections are important to keep because you never know when you’ll need these people. It may be for emotional support, important questions, just a small favor, or professional reasons. When it comes to getting a job, having as many connections as possible are ideal to help you get ahead in the professional world. It is all about who you know and how they could give you recommendations, a great opportunity, or just point you in the right direction for success. 

I know we can all get busy and there are millions of distractions in this world, but it is never a bad thing to reach out to people in your life. With social media, it is easier than ever to do that and just a simple message, post, or song can go a long way.

Don’t leave yourself wishing you reached out more, just send a message. 

Marlena is a third-year in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications at Penn State where she is majoring in Public Relations and minoring in Psychology and Digital Media Trends and Analytics. She is so grateful to be at Penn State and loves learning more about communications, her peers, and herself every day. She hopes to use this knowledge and her own positive outlook to help others in any way she can.
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