It just happened. You officially just realized that you landed on a big campus with lots of unfamiliar faces. You want to quickly drive to your best friend’s house, but you realize that cannot happen—she now lives two states away at an entirely different university. Missing her hits you hard. Everyone knows that “distance makes the heart grow fonder,” but at the same time you’ve also heard “out of sight; out of mind.” So how can you actually stay in touch and prevent losing that friendship?
To help shrink the distance, use this list of ten ideas to stay in touch with your person.
1. Send Letters to Each Other
Nothing says significance as much as a handwritten note. Dropping a few lines creates a permanent way to reminisce old memories, share new moments or encourage your friend by reminding him or her just how much you value your friendship. “Writing letters is a good idea because its personal and something people can always go back and read,” said FSU sophomore Ashley Davis. You might even want to let your creative juices flow even more and add a couple pictures in with your words.
2. Set Up a FaceTime/Skype Schedule
Sooner or later you will find yourself missing your friend’s smile, facial expressions and voice. “I think that as humans, we desire to look face to face with someone when we talk to them. FaceTime allows for that to be accomplished,” said FSU junior David Brownell. In order to stay in touch and find a balance, set up a weekly, or maybe even monthly, FaceTime schedule to catch up on life. Video calls are as close as you will get to accessing much needed face-to-face time.
3. Read a Book Together
You might already consider reading the best way to learn. More specifically, you should view it as a great way to grow together and learn even more about your friend by discovering the ways you both think differently while choosing a book to read through together. Watch your friendship grow page by page and chapter by chapter while you spend time discussing what you read—fiction or fact. Selecting a book or series to read will expand your friendship to a new level while keeping you on the same “page” with each other. Reading the same book while across the country will give you a present connection while you start the new “chapters” of your lives.
4. Have a Gift Exchange
UPS exists for a reason, and not just to deliver your mother’s care packages to your dorm. Stay in touch by gifting your friend in a way that reminds them you remember not only your past, but also present interests, be it a cute coffee mug (because the last one you gave them broke when their cat knocked it off that shelf) or a motivational motto in a frame. Find cute ways to remind your bestie how great of a gift they have been to your life.
5. Text on the Regular
Sometimes sending a quick message makes someone’s day a little brighter. A text from one best friend to another, however, can make their day soar to the level of brightness of an entire sun. “A text from friends that are long distance is like a breath of fresh air that refreshes my soul,” said Leavell College junior Amber Kern. Whether you simply write, “Hey! Thinking about you!” or a long essay sharing just how much you adore them, never underestimate the power of your words.
6. Social Media
Pictures speak 1,000 words. When you live on campuses across the country from your pal, pictures communicate in one of the biggest ways. Keep each other updated by posting pictures with new roommates, at exciting campus events, and maybe some good oldies just to let her know you value her like crazy. “Social media is great when dealing with [long] distance relationships because you can see what [your friends] are doing rather than just receiving a text,” said Saint Petersburg College sophomore Kimber Fort. Social media presents a great way to share mass messages with your entire crew while also racking up those likes on your Insta.
7. Get your Parents to Stay in Touch with Each Other
So, yes, you grew up into a mature college student who radiates a perfect capability to make your own decisions. Soon, though, you will realize that mom and dad really shine as some of the best friends you could ask for. One such way that you will grow to appreciate them comes with their power to stay in touch with your friends’ parents, therefore keeping you in touch when it comes to those ties at home. It looks like a win-win situation.
8. Stalk Each Other
We have all used that Snapchat map before, so get ready to use it more than ever now that you and your bestie live in different states. Technology clearly climbs up the scale as an amazing component for staying in touch, especially if you want to know where your friend spends her days. With incredible apps like Snapchat, FindMyFriends and more, you can easily find out where your friends hang out in their own cities while you thrive in yours. With information like that, you can easily stir up conversations by asking about the cool places you saw their Bitmoji visit.
9. Calendar Out Visits
Life turns out better when you plan exciting things for the future. When it comes to seeing old friends, nothing can compare. Help keep those high school relationships in tact by planning to visit each other either on weekends, holidays or days when you know class looks optional. “Planning visits makes it easier because it gives you something to look forward to,” said Davis. The best part: The two of you live in the brilliant college years and can embrace your wild and free side to decide on any meeting place you both want. Have fun and draw on your adventurous side while making new memories.
10. Don’t Expect Perfection
At some point, you begin to start meeting new people during your college experience—so will your best friend. That shouldn’t come as a shock. It does not mean that they value you less or that they mean less to you—you both will naturally branch out into new surroundings. While you can expect life to happen, you may still feel disappointed at times when your bestie cancels that Skype call to go out to dinner. Try not to let that self-conscious side of your mind doubt your importance to her. Remind yourself that you know her heart and that she knows the importance of this friendship. Know not to expect perfection from each other, but rather to let each other grow in new ways and in new spaces.