How to squeeze your favorite people back into your life

Keep your favorites closerWhy do we ignore people who matter the most to us? You know, the friend or cousin or former teammate who really gets us. Who we can say and do anything with. Who we haven’t connected with in a long time.

You might chalk it up to busyness, but it really comes down to bonds. We are comfortably certain that time out of touch will not fray our affection in the long run. And we’re usually right. Part of a superstrong relationship is that we don’t have to constantly nurture it. The love will always be there. And when we do connect, it is soulfully satisfying. And sustaining. Or is it?

For a minute, forget the people you need to please or impress. Forget your pile of responsibilities. Instead, remember those deep connections — both the memories and the vague plans for future connection.

Is it enough, these momentary touches? How much finer would it be with more frequent contact? Right?

Which brings us back to the busy thing. Assuming you can’t diminish the busy aspect of your life, what if you prioritized the small chunks of free time you do have to connect with your cherished one or two or three?

Here are 10 time-boxed ways to fold your bestest friends back into your life, including a couple longer time-frame ideas. These are thought-starters, so amend and revise as appropriate. In the long run, how you connect is far less relevant than the connections themselves.

How to connect when you can spare…

10 minutes, tops

  1. Send a gratitude email to let him/her know how they impact your life.
  2. Post and tag a throwback photo of the two of you on social media.
  3. Send flowers for no particular reason other than affection.
  4. Forward a link to an interesting story, and include a short note.

One hour (maybe two)

  1. Lunch. If you can’t do it in person, find a quiet place to eat while you Skype or FaceTime. (Could this become a weekly event?)
  2. Write a letter, put it in an envelope, address it, stamp it, and mail it.
  3. Watch a movie together (you know the one).
  4. Call them up to ask what’s new or what’s wrong or what they need help with. Then listen.

A half day or more

  1. Orchestrate a reunion.
  2. Create a get-together tradition, like a monthly (semiannual, annual) dinner party at each other’s homes.

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