5 Simple Ways to Make Long-Distance Friendships Work

Monday, July 18, 2016



A few months ago, my bestie Noémie left for Cambridge, UK, along with her boyfriend as he had just landed the opportunity of a lifestyle; an impressive scholarship to pursue his PhD at the infamous University of Cambridge. Those four upcoming years apart would be the longest we've ever been separated from each other and at times, I began to wonder how our friendship could survive the long-term absence and how things could ultimately remain the same. Truth is, they can't. Nothing will ever be the same anymore but that is a beautiful thing that shouldn't compromise the bond we've shared for all these years. We had to learn how to make it work and although it may be challenging at times, there aren't happiest moments than the ones on which I get to hear from her and her new life abroad! Here's how you too (two!) can manage to maintain a friendship with your best mate while living on different continents...

1. START SOMETHING PRIVATE AND PERSONAL


The first thing Noémie and I did when she moved away was to create and adjust to a new normal. We'd usually make time to see each other, just the two of us, to catch up on our daily grind and confide in each other, so why not try and find a way to keep up with our little habits now that we live apart from each other? Many social platforms can be used to create a safe and private space for you and your BFF to have deep, hour-long conversations, quick little pick-me-up chats, share the good news, the bad news, memories, updates, you name it...


2. KEEP EACH OTHER UPDATED ON THE LITTLE THINGS


Don't wait for a BIG and important news to connect with your bestie; small talk is key and will keep you close no matter the distance between you guys. I love hearing about the little trips Noémie takes here and there now that she's living in UK and that traveling through the EU is made easy. On my hand, I like to update her with news about my dating life and what is going on within our group of good girlfriends. Whenever something happens that reminds me of her, and vice versa, we share!


3. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SOCIAL MEDIA


In a era led by social media presence and networking platforms, there's is more and more ways to keep things interesting while keeping in touch. Snapchat is by far my favourite tool to share inside's and send quick hello's no matter when I find myself to be. If I'm out seeing a band that we both like or if I try this new recipe that I know for a fact she'll want to try too, I Snap! Google Hangouts is GREAT if you are trying to make plans to visit or see each other in the future; you can use the platform to create lists, share links, update each other's schedule on a shared calendar and even wire money. Facebook calls are free which is a good alternative to expensive phone calls oversea, Twitter makes sharing news quick and easy, and Pinterest allows you to create private boards to pin away and inspire each other. Really, there is an app for everything these days so give social media a try and share away!


4. KEEP CELEBRATING THE EVERYDAY LIFE EVENTS


It is of a great importance to stay in each other's life through the small and big events happening, even if your can no longer physically celebrate these moments together. Every year on our birthdays Noémie and I give each other little presents to celebrate; I do not intend on skipping this tradition now that we live apart! It also feels very heart-warming to send out and receive congratulations on new jobs, graduations, raises, new haircuts… ;) And of course, with the holidays being the hardest time to be apart from your bestie, planning little hangouts like coffee dates or wine tasting soirées over video chat is a fun way to bond and make more memories.

5. PLAN A VISIT!


Of course, the best part of living apart is that we both get to make plans to travel together and visit each other once or twice a year. Such excitements! In just a little over two weeks, I am myself heading to England for our very first reunion since Noémie left for Cambridge. We're gonna spend a few days in London; shopping in SoHo, tea-house hopping in Marylebone, learning about British history and the Royal's (of course!) in Westminster, and taking gorgeous pictures in the lovely neighborhood of Nothing Hill. Then, we're off to Cambridge so she can show me her new house, new city and new life on the campus with her love! Counting the days 'till I get to hold her in my arms again...




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