Far apart but close at heart: Staying in touch with friends and family

 Sending a card in the mail to a friend or family is a thoughful way to stay in touch. (Eric Allix Roger/Flickr Creative Commons)

Sending a card in the mail to a friend or family is a thoughful way to stay in touch. (Eric Allix Roger/Flickr Creative Commons)

As summer draws to a close, many college students are faced with the dilemma of saying goodbye to friends and family. But saying goodbye doesn’t have to mean totally letting go of your important relationships.  

 

Make time

This is probably one of the most important tips for staying in touch with everyone back home. Setting aside time to talk or text with loved ones really shows that you care about them and want to continue to have a special relationship.

Whether it be calling, facetiming or texting, schedule a certain time each week for each of your friends or family members. This could be as simple as facetiming your high school best friend once every weekend or calling your parents for 20 minutes every Wednesday night to get them caught up on the goings-on in your life.

Your loved ones care about and want to hear from you, so chat about all the new experiences that you’re having at college and confide in friends that may be facing similar struggles to adapt at their own schools.

 

Take advantage of school breaks

While it’s usually most convenient to communicate with people through technology nowadays, nothing beats meeting up in person. Use times like Thanksgiving, winter and spring breaks to make plans with old friends. Do something special and fun, like going to your high school’s Thanksgiving day football game or throwing a New Year’s Eve party. Make your time together memorable; and don’t forget to take lots of pictures to hang on your walls so that you’ll always be reminded of the good times you and your friends shared.

 

Go old-fashioned

If you want to do something special for your friends or significant other, consider sending a letter. No one sends letters anymore, but everyone enjoys a sentimental surprise!

Although snail mail is obviously slower than email, texting or calling, it’s nice to have something to look forward to, such as a letter every month from your friend. You could even send a letter to your grandma just to say hi! Everyone receives so much junk mail that expecting a letter from you could really brighten their day (or your own when you receive one!).

You can even send cards or care packages for holidays and birthdays, or a cute postcard from school telling your cousin or best friend about all the fun clubs you joined.

 

Email just to say hi

While email may seem more formal than texting or calling, sometimes it can work for certain people with whom you’d like to stay in touch.

If you thought that Mr. Smith’s senior year of English really prepared you for writing college papers, send him an email thanking him for teaching you and describe what things you’ve gone on to accomplish in the time since graduating. Just like with snail mail, seeing an unexpected email from someone that you have a good relationship with can cheer you up!

 

Share something

If you have a group of friends that’s somewhat broken apart now that everyone’s at different colleges, try creating a shared something. It could be Spotify playlists of songs you and your friends jammed out to at prom. It could be a book that you pass between yourselves until everyone’s read it. It could even be sending each other a shirt from your respective college bookstores, so that even though you’re far apart, you still have something in common.


Stephanie Santillo is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at stephanie.santillo@uconn.edu.