STYLE ARTICLE

telephone call

Connect With a Long Lost Friend

You might be surprised by the joy it brings both of you

Try this one today: Call a friend you haven't talked to in a long time. You'll be amazed at how much joy it brings them, and you in turn. Joy, like smiles, laughter, and yawns is contagious. (1)

There are two obstacles most people have to overcome to make this phone call. First, they have to get over the social awkwardness of having not connected for some time; second, they have to allot the time.

Overcoming the Anxiety 

Like physics 101, objects at rest like to stay at rest. The first time most people experience a little anxiety because they're interacting with someone who was once a close friend and now is less known. But once this mental hump is overcome once, most people find their conversations are wonderful, and it gets easier every time. 

Tip: Start with someone safe, and go to lesser and lesser known friends as time goes on.

Making the Time

For some reason we have this idea that connecting with a long lost friend should mean a two hour phone call. Most of these kinds of conversations end up that way, but its usually because something life-changing has occurred. If you tell yourself, and your friend, that you only have fifteen minutes but you just wanted to connect and tell them you still think and care about them, you'll set a positive precedent for staying in touch.

Tip: If you're worried that you won't be able to end the conversation, make sure to call them when you've got a hard deadline for getting off of the phone, like when you're about to board a plane at the airport.

Beyond the Phone Call

The anxiety and the time crunch are loosely held beliefs that crumble under deeper introspection: there are no hard and fast social mores that prohibit us breaking these barriers. So find a way to connect with someone you admire, you care about, but you haven't kept in touch with. 

It could be as simple as a Facebook wall post. If they're in town, you might schedule a lunch meeting—you'll have to eat anyway. You'll bring happiness to both of you, especially with the hectic pace of today's interconnected world.

*Bonus points: Write them a letter.

(1) http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2008/12/8/study-finds-joy-to-be-contagious/

*editor's note: we actually have no way to give you bonus hap points, but you get the idea. You're doing this all for your own good anyway, right?

Image: Some rights reserved by the_whiteness

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