Being More Intentional in Long Distance Relationships
When we moved to Washington, one of my biggest, probably THE biggest worry for me was leaving behind all of the relationships and people we love in Colorado. It's a scary thing to remove yourself, not just from the places you know, but the people too. Of course, we miss our friends and family in Colorado, but there are a few things I've learned in these long-distance relationships with our friends and family that have helped make this transition smoother and kept us in touch with those people.
I've put together a list of ways you can go beyond the Facebook highlight reel and stay connected with your friends and family. And yeah, it takes a little bit of effort, but if life isn't for building relationships and loving and being loved, then what is it for?
- Send real letters. Yes actually put pen to paper, slap a stamp on it, and send it.
- Send real birthday cards. Not just birthday texts or write on their Facebook timeline.
- Facebook Message them. Instead of liking a photo or commenting on it, use it to spark an actual conversation and see how they're doing.
- Ask about small things. Randomly, not so randomly, what foods are they loving lately? Any new movies they would recommend? How's their day going? What do they have going on a work?
- Tell about small things. Send a cute photo, send them a Snapchat directly, or a funny Meme you saw that made you think of them.
- Send small gifts. I'm not saying you should spend a fortune, but a lot of times gifts make someone feel extra special and extra connected. Something as small as a drawing, a pressed leaf from your back yard, sending on a copy of a book you just read and loved... just letting people know you're thinking of them.
- Send actual photos. I do this a lot for our elderly grandparents who aren't on Facebook but still want to see photos. Every few months, I send an envelope with photos I print at Walgreens or Target with a letter updating them on our lives, our kids, etc, and send it over.
- Make a phone call. Yes, a real life phone call with someone else on the other end just to talk for a bit.
- Skype Dates. Both of you order Chinese Food, you can even watch the same TV show at the same time, and just hang and watch together.
- FaceTime instead of texting a picture or calling. A quick FaceTime is so easy and fun, and I like just seeing someone's face and hearing their voice.
- Read the same book at the same time. Kind of like your own little private book club.
- Schedule time "together." With a Skype Date, with a Facetime... just agree that every other Tuesday night at 8:00, you'll call and take the time to keep caught up on each other's lives.
- Travel. I know this is an obvious one, and a hard one but hear me out. Plane tickets are expensive, but not too expensive most of the time, and even a really short weekend trip can make a huge difference to just be able to see your parents, or hang with your best friend. It's important and more doable than it may seem. It's something I've been doing lately, and even though it's exhausting, it's so worth it.
Will you help me grow this list? What are ways you stay in touch with your long-distance friends and family that help you stay close? I'm so very interested to know!
Have a most wonderful day, y'all!