When you leave high school you say to practically everyone you see on the last day ‘we MUST stay in touch’ and you know, that 70% of the people you’ve said that to you’ll never speak to again in your life. And that’s the way it goes. But there’s the other 30% that you really did want to stay in touch with, and unfortunately the friendship has just dissipated. This happens to pretty much everyone and once you haven’t spoken in a few months, then you start to think ‘is it awkward if I reach out now?’ and because of the self doubt you gradually part ways and eventually end up strangers. But this doesn’t have to happen, so here are a few tricks to keep friendships alive.
1) Stay in touch.
Seems pretty obvious really but it’s easier said than done. When you’re in school you don’t realise how much of your friendship is face to face. We may be the millennial generation but when you see someone all day everyday, you don’t get in the habit of arranging to meet outside of school. So when you’re on summer break, make a conscious effort to meet up with your friends, it doesn’t have to be going out. It could just be chilling around each others houses, or walking each others dogs. Just get into the habit of seeing each other regularly.
2) Relinquish self doubt
Often if you haven’t spoke to a friend in a while it can be a nerve wracking to be the one to start the conversation. You can get in a horrible spiral of thoughts: ‘what if we’ve left it too long’…’what if they don’t like me anymore’ and so on. The best thing to do is completely ignore that voice in your head and send that message. You were friends once, and a just because you haven’t spoken in a while doesn’t mean you’re not still friends. Get rid of the self doubt and contact them.
3) Integrate friendships
Whatever path you’ve chosen after high school; University, apprenticeship or a job you’re bound to make new friends. And that’s great. But it can get kind of awkward if you’re always with your new friends cos you share a dorm with them and not seeing your high school friends because they’re across the country. Maybe get your high school friends to visit you at Uni and meet your roommates, or arrange for your work buddies to meet your high school pals. Integrating the different groups is an easy way to ensure you’re spending time with all of your friends.
4) Good friends are worth the effort
Even if you’re completely swamped with deadlines for uni, or you’ve been pulling extra shifts at work make time to send a quick text message. You don’t realise how much of life can pass you by when you’re busy, and how little you socialise. It doesn’t have to be a day shopping, just a quick text to check how they’re doing, maybe arrange to do something when you’re both free. A good friend should understand.
Leaving high school can be tough but it’s a lot easier if you’ve got your friends by your side!
How did you find leaving high school? Have you stayed in contact with your friends? Leave a comment below!