I had a delightful dinner tonight with a friend I haven’t seen in several years. Life happened, and we drifted apart. I’m grateful that she reached out and invited me to reconnect. From our first words exchanged, it was like no time had passed.
My 25-year old daughter is very good at reclaiming and maintaining friendships. I’ve watched her network grow and mature since high school. Occasionally I’m even invited into her network and encouraged to Friend a Facebook friend.
In today’s environment of home, school and work separated by miles and even states, it’s no longer everyday happenstance that we encounter our friends at the butcher, the baker or the local Starbucks.
While it’s true that social media like Facebook and Twitter facilitate quick, easy exchanges of Status – here’s what I’m doing right now, Photos – check out whom I’m with, and Activities – look what I’m reading, supporting or boycotting, it’s equally true that you must be intentional to have real relationships. The sheer volume of Facebook and Twitter posts can bury you under updates. Friends who don’t post often simply fall out of sight.
Staying connected is about seeing each other regularly, whether it’s seeing the actual person or the virtual person online. It’s about having an actual conversation rather than just bumping into each other in passing. Connection is about engagement, and engagement is about spending the time to learn what’s really going on with the other person.
Reach out and renew a friendship. You’ll thank yourself!