As an introvert, I can go for months before I realize I haven’t connected with a friend or family member. Grandma has been known to say, "I can never get a hold of you."
So now in my calendar I have times to call my Mom, Grandma and Sister so I connect regularly.
I also have time on my calendar to plan time with friends. And I have a friends list where I keep people I want to keep in touch with. Don’t think you need a friend’s list? Have you ever realized a year has gone by and you haven’t gotten together with a friend? If people are important to you why not make it easier to stay connected?
This also helps with aquaintances that you would love to turn into friends. Studies show that the more people get together, the sooner they become closer friends. Even if it’s in a group. Who would you love to become closer with?
When we get busy, hanging out with friends is often the first thing to go. I like to have standing dates to get together with someone every other week for coffee. Or a monthly walking date with someone. It helps with the back and forth of planning time together.
And you can add friends to things you are doing anyway – exercising, eating, shopping, socializing after a meeting you have to attend.
For those of you already naturally sociable, how do you stay connected with the ones you love?
Okay, don’t laugh but I have a friends spreadsheet. At the moment it’s only updated up to Aug last year and I put in the Dec/ Jan ones recently but it does help me to remember when I haven’t seen someone in a while.
My favourite tip for keeping social is to schedule the next one at the current “date”. It’s a bit nerdy but it works – we all haul out our (in my case) paper diaries and phones and look for a date there and then
Facebook helps to keep in touch due to its addictive nature, but writing on your friends’ walls doesn’t count for face to face interaction.
I think that staying connected is difficult for everyone especially with busy and often conflicting schedules. I attend a weekly Bible Study with one of my best friends and we usually plan to do something together afterwards.
I, too, am an introvert. Also very depressed, high anxiety, and agoraphobic, as well as fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. But I want to see my two friends and my family. It’s so hard, though. And I have a chaotic home – always messy/dirty, with the desire, but no energy, to keep it clean – so I won’t let anyone come over. It leaves me very isolated. Texting seems to be my best chance to stay in touch for now.
Karen, I am glad you are staying in touch. And I hope you are getting help with things – you don’t have to stay in this smaller world.
I love this idea of adding on to what you are already doing
These are great ideas Marcia. I know people with a friend binder, where they put friend’s kids names, likes, dislikes and what’s going on with them.