Getting caught up in the responsibilities and priorities of day-to-day life is a surefire way to lose all track of time, and when we are busy with work and adulting, our social life is one of the first things to go out the window—usually, right after our self-care routine. Drifting apart from friends or having a falling out altogether is a sad side effect of this. Luckily, this is totally understandable and happens to the best of us, so there is hope. If it’s been months or even years since you have talked to a friend and you want to reconnect without it being totally awkward, here are six ways you can do that:
1. Engage on social media
I think I can speak for all of us when I say that I follow a good number of old friends on social media, and while I haven’t talked to most of them in what feels like forever, I still keep up with them through posts and stories. Social media allows us to keep up with old friends on the surface level, but if you want to actually rekindle a friendship, you have to engage with them more than just liking their posts. An easy way to do this is by leaving genuine comments on their posts, replying to their stories, and sending a DM to open up a conversation. Not sure what to say? Start by giving a compliment or asking a question. By doing this often, your friendship will start to naturally grow again.
2. Send a quick text
Don’t be afraid to send a quick text! Start by saying hello, asking them how they are, letting them know you are thinking about them, and asking to get together. For example, you could say something like, “Hey! This is [name]! How have you been? I was just thinking about when we [insert fond memory], and I can’t believe that was so long ago! I would love to catch up sometime soon if you’re available.” If you don’t have their number anymore, ask a mutual friend for it or send the message via email or social media.
3. Get together with mutual friends
Maybe you don’t see your old friend anymore, but you might have mutual friends who are still close to them. Making plans to get together as a group is a low-pressure way to reconnect because your mutual friends will be there to help bridge the gap and prevent any dull and awkward get-to-know-you-again small talk. This is a good option for you if you are really nervous to reconnect and/or want other people there to help keep the conversation flowing.
4. Work through conflict
Did you two have a falling out? Unfortunately, we’ve all been there. By making the first move and reaching out to resolve the conflict, you are taking the first step toward building a trusting friendship again. It is important to clear the air and be open about why you are reaching out in the first place. If you miss them, feel sorry for something you might have said or done, and want to put the past in the past for good, make sure to include that before asking if they are interested in getting together again. This way, your intentions are clear and it doesn’t feel like you’re reaching out and pretending nothing happened.
5. Share memories
Did you come across old pictures or see something that reminded you of them? Send it their way with a short message! For example, if you see something online that has to do with something you know they used to be interested in, tag them in it and say something like, “This reminds me of you! Do you still [insert hobby or interest]?” or if a Facebook memory comes up with them in it, comment and say something along the lines of, “What a throwback! Do you remember this? It’s been so long. Miss you!” This is an easy way to open up a conversation that doesn’t seem super random.
6. Ask if they want to get together
Don’t want to beat around the bush? Be straightforward and ask if they want to get together! Life moves very fast, so if you want to reconnect, just ask before more time passes by. Odds are, they will be glad you reached out and might have been meaning to do the same thing. To do this, reach out in whatever way feels natural and easy to you, whether that is by picking up the phone, sending a text, or direct messaging them on social media, and propose specific dates and places to see if they are available and want to meet up.