Out of sight, out of mind. That’s usually the fragile nature of human connections and what brings down most long-distance relationships. When distance becomes a factor, it’s easy to slip out of touch and drift apart. Inseparable best friends become total strangers. Rock-solid friendships vanish into thin air, and you’re left with nothing but hazy memories to hold onto. But it doesn’t have to end that way. A long-distance relationship can still work, provided both parties put in the effort and dedication necessary to keep the fire burning. Make your long-distance friendship stronger than ever with these 8 practical tips.
How to keep your friends close no matter how far:
1. Regularly check up on friends via calls
When was the last time you rang up your friends? Can’t remember? The time to start dialing is now. It’s easy to fall into a text-only relationship but that can slowly, and surely, create the emotional disconnect that does your relationship in.
So always make room for a phone call, no excuses. It doesn’t have to be National Call a Friend Day (Totally real. Happens every year, on December 28th) before you hit up your friend. StayTouch can be of service here, with our efficient contact management tool enabling you to effortlessly keep all your contacts up to date.
2. Nullify the distance with convenient technology
Sharing virtual experiences with long-distance friends is also a great way to hang out without having to travel countless miles. A couple of things you could try out in this respect, include:
- Watching movies together from different locations using certain apps
- Virtually exploring cities together via Google Street View. Sounds silly, but it’s super fun
- Collaborating on online battle royales with friends.
- Virtual book-reading sessions
- Writing scenes and stories together on online communities
Thanks to virtual technology, you can still share in the joy of your favorite pastimes with friends and bond over that which excites you most.
3. Writing a letter goes a long way
In an age of overflowing digital savviness, it’s way too easy to lose that intimate touch and that’s where physical letters prove personal and thoughtful. While three days of mail watching might seem inconvenient, it’s worth the wait as it proves a lot more meaningful than a virtual text.
Emails come and go. Letters, on the other hand, can be treasured forever, saved as souvenirs of an everlasting friendship that will go to great lengths for each other. What’s more, you’re sure to put a smile on your friend’s face.
4. Postcards still count
Like letters, postcards were hip right about a thousand years ago, but they still matter all the same. Make your postcards a hit with your far-off friends by:
- Making it a surprise. Don’t have their address? It’s time to crack open the yellow pages (Don’t panic, there’s an online version). Better yet, look up their latest profile information on a smart networking platform
- Picking a personality-matching template. Is your friend a nerd for food? You know what to do
- Including an inside joke to crack them up. An awful poem or pun should do the trick as well
Postcards are great because only a handful of people still send them out, so you’re sure to stick out.
5. Surprise them with a gift
A gift to friends on special days, while thoughtful and caring, is obvious and predictable, but by all means, don’t forget to send a present on their birthday. It still counts.
Throw them off track and send gifts when they least expect it. Here are some great ideas on what you could get them:
- Long-distance friendship lockets
- A photo book of your last escapades together
- Personalized cutlery, bracelets, lamps, etc.
That said, you’re best placed to pick out the perfect gift for your friends in line with what they like. An unexpected gift doubles up as a fun and proximal reminder of your presence.
6. Drop by and say hello when you can
Your friend living far away isn’t always a bad thing. This gives you the perfect reason to plan a weekend getaway or holiday away from home, and perhaps experience a taste of new culture while you’re at it.
Video calls come in close, but let’s face it, nothing beats the joy of visiting your friend in person, and watching their face light up with the excitement of your arrival. So, whenever you can, make arrangements for some quality catch-up time in person. For utmost convenience, remember to use the calendar sync feature on StayTouch to align your free dates so you can squeeze the most of every opportunity.
7. Hit your friends up on a video call
If you can’t make the trip anytime soon, video calling your friends is the next best thing. There are many virtual meeting scheduling tools you can use, but you want one that:
- Can link up calendars for convenient timings
- Can schedule and manage online events and meetings
- Is easy to use and has reminders
Set up online events regularly, where you and your friends can hang out, perhaps share a virtual game night of Pictionary, charades, trivia, etc. Games are always a fun way to bond, and add resilience, vitality, and fulfillment to friendships.
8. Connect on social media
Keeping tabs on each other on social media is an excellent way to stay connected, especially in the absence of a direct line of communication. You can keep up with important life moments without drastically reworking your schedule.
Send them a thoughtful DM every once in a while. Tag them whenever you visit places that are of importance to the both of you, and share posts they may like on their favorite subjects. At the end of the day, social media, while a great stand-in, cannot be a substitute for direct communication. Sometimes, you just need to pick up the phone.
The odds are in your favor to make it work
Long-distance friendships can crumble due to trust issues, tensions, and conflicts, but the great news is that the majority of them hold up well despite these challenges. A KIIROO survey found that 6 in 10 long-distance relationships go the distance. In fact, studies have revealed that many long-distance friendships turn out to be much healthier than geographically close ones, realizing higher satisfaction levels. With dedication, commitment, and an open line of communication, there’s totally no reason yours shouldn’t work too. If you found these pointers helpful, check out social media accounts for more insightful tips on social and professional networking.