If you are traveling and making a lot of friends every day you have probably faced the problem of having to leave them and not knowing if or when you are going to see them again. Maybe you were even on the point where you decided for yourself or even with that person, that you want to stay friends. And I am not talking about “friends online” I mean like real, close friends, whom you tell everything and with whom you want to spend time as often as possible. You probably then got to a point where you wondered if this long-distance friendship will work or if all of this is pointless and you won’t be able to stay in touch.
Or maybe you are already having some long-distance friendships and need some help to make them work. In any case, I want to share my experience with it today and give you some tips how I make my friendships work.
Ready? Okay, let’s get started.
Here is what we will cover today:
What’s negative on a LD friendship?
What is positive on a LD friendship?
How to make it work?
Before I will give you tips on how to make a distance friendship work, I quickly want to share my experience and talk about the pros and cons of such a friendship and why it may be worth considering it.
First, let me tell you my story quick. My first distance friendship started when I was about 12. I met my now best friend in a surf camp and we lived about a 4-and-a-half-hour drive apart from each other. Until we were about 15 we only saw each other in the surf camp for a couple weeks a year. Then we decided to visit each other twice a year. One time she came to me and one time I came visit her. Then after graduation we both started traveling a lot. We travelled together for a few months, then separated again, meet up again and separated. It’s been going like that for the past almost 5 years now and there were years where we only saw each other one or two days a year.
Though despite all of this we are still very close and as I said before she belongs to my best friends.
In addition, since I have been traveling so much, my distance friendships got more and more and as a result of me being on the road most of the time, almost all my friendships are on distance. Though by now I am quite used to it and I have the certainty, that if you really want it, both of you, it can work and it can be awesome.
However, of cause it is not always easy, so let’s have a quick look on what sacrifices you have to make.
What’s negative on LD friendships?
Not seeing each other
The most obvious thing I think. If you are far away from each other you hardly see the other one, which can be very hard. Spending time with one another is a huge part of a friendship. You want to see the other person and make memories together, right? Well unfortunately that is a rarity within distance friendships.
Not being part of life
Sometimes when so far away from each other, it can feel like you are not part of the other person’s life. It can seem like you are not important to them anymore or you miss out on so many great moments of their lives. In contrary, they also aren’t part of your best moments most of the time and this can get very depressing if you think of it more closely.
A side effect you never can get rid of entirely. If you don’t spend time with each other and can’t be part of the others day to day life it can happen that you grow apart from each other and become to different.
Not having someone all the time
This is more a result of traveling then of being at home and having friends somewhere else. If you are like me and mostly have distance friendships you can quickly get the feeling of having nothing constant in your life. There’s no person you can depend on, no one who is always there in person.
However, like I said before. Such friendships can be very rewarding too, so let’s have a look into that.
What’s positive on LD friendships?
Always something to talk about
When you get the chance to see each other you will always have something to talk about. And I promise you will never get bored with a distance friend.
Appreciating the time with each other
If you don’t see each other often, you start to really appreciate the time you have together. You stop taking this friend for granted because you had to put in so much effort to see each other. What makes this friendship even more valuable, right?
If it works you got a win
It’s for sure no easy thing to make a distance friendship work. Both parties have to really want it, otherwise it’ not going to work. Though if it works you can count yourself lucky because you found a person who is willing to do almost everything to spend time with you and you have the certainty that you will survive a lot because you already dealt with the distance.
You don’t have to fear to be alone
I know this might sound a bit wrong at this point but if you have distance friends you can be certain about never being alone. You already used to not see your friends all the time, so you are used to being alone. And being alone for sure is no bad thing, in contrary. It can be very helpful, but that’s another topic. However, if you have friends all over the world, no matter where you go, you will always have someone to spend time with.
That said, I hope you are ready to take that step and start making your friendship work. And here is how I made them work.
How to make a long-distance friendship work?
Keep in contact, talk regularly
Foundation of this friendship to work is that you keep in touch. Text, call and visit each other regularly. I can say out of experience, you don’t necessarily have to see each other often, if you text and call you can still be up to date and play an important part in the others life.
Though you have to somehow keep contact.
Be honest and open
Tell the other person how you feel, what you want and when you are upset. It’s kind of like in normal friendships as well just that here it is even more important because the other person probably won’t recognize if you are angry with them. They don’t see you so how should they.
Make effort to see each other
At some point, you have to visit and meet up otherwise it’s not a real friendship and to make that happen both have to put in effort to visit. Make sure that it is equal and no one puts all on him or herself.
Get in the right Mindset
A huge percentage of making this happen is your Mindset. If you believe it can and will work you are already half way there. Make sure both parties have the same Mindset about that friendship otherwise it’s a waste of time, money and energy.
Know the worth of each other
Along with the right Mindset, knowing the worth of the other person and his or her value to you is very important. Knowing how important they are to you will make you show commitment and the right approach to do whatever it takes to make it work.
Accept and appreciate
Lastly, there’s no point in feeling sorry for not seeing each other so often. Accept that you have the distance between you and appreciate the times you have together. And always remember it’s in your own power how often you see each other. You can choose.
I hope that post was helpful and gave you a guideline on how to make your distance friendship work. If you need any more advice or help don’t hesitate to contact me. I am more than happy to help you out.
Also share this post if you now someone who might need it to help them make their friendships work as well.
Lastly, make sure to come back next week for more inspiration and browse some of those handpicked posts on traveling and self-development for more motivation and support.