I’m horrible at keeping in touch with people who aren’t in my immediate daily life. If someone isn’t involved in my work or my local social circle, I generally won’t remember to give them a call. It’s easy for the busyness of life to eat away at the time available to keep in touch with old friends.
Old friendships are worth fighting for. Yes, it’s impossible to maintain all your old friendships, but it is possible to cultivate a intentional few.
For me, although the time is definitely a limiting factor, the real blocker is the fear of loss. To be frank, for me, time is just an excuse. It’s these questions and thoughts that create the real resistance:
What if the conversation isn’t as good as I remember it? We haven’t talked in a while, what if it’s awkward? What if they aren’t interesting in keeping in touch? I don’t feel like putting out to make this work, it’s easier just to give up.
This year I’m working on reconnecting with old relationships, even if it’s just for 15 minutes during a drive. Here’s what is motivating me:
- They give you a fresh perspective. The majority of my old friends have spread out across the country, working in various industries, developing different hobbies, involved in different communities. They bring a unique perspective and help to interrogate your own thinking.
- They know you better than most, and can offer great advice. Old friends have a vantage point that is impossible to reconstruct with new relationships. They can offer advice that can cut through your bad thinking and enable you to make better decisions, faster.
- Networks create opportunity. The most successful people I know spend a large portion of their time just corresponding with people. The most valuable professionals are those who have a network they can tap into to get the job done. Keeping in touch with old friends keeps you connected to their networks in some capacity.
- It’s fun. My old buddies are some of the best people I know. I’d be a fool not to continue to share life when them, even if it’s just over a phone call.