It’s an understatement to say that I’m proud of my friends. I love that they’ve each taken such interesting paths in life and branched out beyond their comfort zones, moving all over the world. But, there’s a tinge of sadness behind the fact that all of my best best friends live so far away from me.
From Amsterdam, Peru, D.C., Dallas, Houston to Philadelphia, Chicago, San Francisco, Florida… you name it. They’re everywhere! My friends are so incredibly important to me. When I first moved to New York I was on a heavy rotation talking to a few of my Chicago besties every week. I just never want to grow apart from my girls no matter where we are.
You all know this, but it’s hard work (like any relationship worth nurturing). My best friend Arleigh (who got married last summer!) is the absolute best at keeping up with everyone. I usually have to get a few of the updates from her because I know she’ll have talked to some of them more than myself.
Over time you get better at figuring out what works, and now honestly with some of the sillier social media channels (Snapchat, Instagram stories, etc.) it’s easier to at least feel like you know what’s going on in their lives without having to talk every week.
That being said, there’s nothing that replaces picking up the phone and talking to your friends. Seriously, it’s unfortunate how infrequently people call each other anymore. I’ve figured out a few things that work for me and help me keep tabs on my ladies regularly.
1. Master the art of the “quick life updates” via texting
Everyone is busy. You might only have 1 solid hour after work/making or going to dinner/and whatever other life stuff you have going on. And in that 1 solid hour you might want to read, watch TV, take a bubble bath or just sit in silence – you know, you do you. You can easily end up in long drawn out paragraph texts which also can be time consuming if you’re not in the mood. If you haven’t caught up in a while I usually ask for the “highlights as of late” and request a quick and short list of the best stuff that’s been going on. It’s essentially the life cliff notes that you can elaborate on the next time you do a full debrief and helps me not miss any bigger things happening like when they’re leaving for a big trip or someone changing jobs.
2. Snapchats and Bitmojis: embrace them
The only reason I got Snapchat was when I moved to New York so that we could all snap each other the dumb and in the moment stuff we were doing. If we were laying in bed hungover, out dancing all night, eating pizza on the couch, you name it. The things we would do together but now couldn’t are all I snap. We end up texting sometimes completely in Bitmojis or via Snapchat text and it’s totally fine. I feel like I have a real look at what they’re doing more so than asking “what have you been up to lately?”
3. Agree to not bang each others’ calls and do less than 5 minute-ers
You ALL know what I’m talking about – you’re sitting there and see someone calling and you just “aren’t in the mood to talk” so you let it go to VM. Ashamed to admit it or not you’ve done it and I have too. Getting out of that habit is the first step. Start answering and just preface the call with that you have to keep it short but are so happy to hear from them. You never want to be the person your friends never call because they never answer.
4. Send cards
They can make you laugh, smile and just feel loved. They’re extremely cheap if you think about it and that extra time you take to find one and send to your bestie will remind them how special they are. I keep a stash in my apartment that I pick up when I see a good one and my trick is that when I get cards from anyone I immediately put their address in my phone so that I have them offhand.
5. Find your in between time and use that to reach out
Whether it’s to and from the subway, on your drive to work, or while you’re doing laundry throw on your headphones and give them a call. I’m guilty of almost always multi-tasking when we’re catching up (sorry guys) but it’s the only way I can do it. I talk to my mom sometimes while I’m doing my makeup in the morning and usually am Facetiming with my sister and nephew when I’m cooking at night. You gotta do what you gotta do!
How do you keep up with your besties?