One of my favorite pictures of all-time is from my favorite 6th birthday party. I’m blowing out a candle. Right next to me is my best buddy, Daniel Weber.
Daniel is still my best friend (outside of my beautiful, lovely wife!). We were both best men in each other’s weddings. Godfathers to each other’s children. Friendship spanning 30+ years, through highs and lows.
Which leads me to a question.
What Keeps a Friendship Strong?
To find the answers, I polled the community at Terkel. Here’s what they had to share about keeping a friendship strong.
- Set Up Routine Get-Togethers
- Communicate and Show that You Genuinely Care
- Show Interest in Their Lives
- Endeavor to Connect Once Per Month
- Check-in via Text Message
- Embark on New Experiences Together
- Exchange Memes
- Practice Vulnerability
- Be Trustworthy
- Send Postcards or Letters
- Connect Over Social Media
- Maintain a Sense of Humor
- Practice Good Listening
- Find Common Hobbies
Set Up Routine Get-Togethers
You can set up routine get-togethers, such as monthly Zoom chats or meetings at a coffee shop every other week. Send each other calendar invites so that neither of you forgets. Sometimes you have to be proactive, especially with friends who do not live in the same city. However, this goes for friends who live near you, too, because we all know that life can get busy.
Founder, CEO, and Nurse Practitioner, Skin Pharm
Communicate and Show that You Genuinely Care
One of the easiest and most effective ways to maintain a friendship is through communication. Even a quick check-up message now and then is enough to ensure your friend knows that you're thinking of them!
Keeping the lines of communication open helps reassure your friend that they are valued and appreciated, no matter how much time has passed since you last spoke. Plus, it never hurts to let them know you genuinely care about what's happening in their life and offer an ear if they need one. Whether it's via phone, text, or video call—staying connected with an old friend is a surefire way to stay tight for years on end.
CEO and Chief Content Creator, ToolsGaloreHQ
Show Interest in Their Lives
A huge part of maintaining any friendship is that they feel seen and cared for. Remembering important dates or events in their life, reaching out to see how they are, and keeping the lines of communication open are all excellent courses of action. If you want to maintain a friendship easily, don't let them develop a feeling that you don't care about them.
Founder and CEO, Urban Skin Rx
Endeavor to Connect Once Per Month
Set a goal to catch up with your friend once per month. For example, calling, messaging, or grabbing a bite to eat all work—the most important thing is to make an effort to reach out and continue to nurture the relationship.
Because we sometimes find ourselves living far from loved ones, traveling for work, and getting busy with our everyday lives, it's essential to know that hanging out in person isn't the only way to sustain a friendship; sometimes, it's just about picking up the phone.
Co-Founder, Sebastian Cruz Couture
Check-in via Text Message
When our kids were tiny, my mommy group of about five friends used to get together every Tuesday evening for a playdate. As the group grew with more kids and adults, our meetings became less frequent. Yet, we remain as close as ever because we text each other throughout the week.
We all live in a small town, where you can't go to the grocery store without seeing someone you know. We look out for each other, and texting gives us an easy way to do so. For example, if one of us sees a wreck, we text the entire group to make sure everyone and their families are okay. We share funny memes, TikTok videos, local events, and other things to feel connected from a distance.
Our playdates might only happen every once in a while, but none of us feel that our friendships have changed.
Founder and Director, Fleurish Freelance
Embark on New Experiences Together
Regularly engaging in new activities is a great way to maintain relationships, whether they are business or personal. When you're taking a risk together, it will bring you closer and help friends build trust more quickly.
Examples of activities that can be done with friends include trying a new restaurant for dinner, going out for an evening stroll to watch the sunset, or joining a social sports league. These experiences can help to foster closer relationships and keep friendships alive.
Director and Founder, iProcess
It might sound kind of silly, but exchanging memes always struck me as a great way to maintain a friendship. It shows that you're thinking about someone, that you understand them well enough to share something that they will find funny, and that you're not pressuring them to respond; you just wanted to make them smile.
More often than not, being comfortable enough to joke around by sending memes keeps friends connected, even if meeting up or chatting on the phone is a bit too big of a burden because of life getting in the way.
Whether it's in a professional or personal space, one of the best ways to build and maintain friendships is through authenticity and vulnerability.
Vulnerability is multifaceted; but for friendships, giving the other a peek into your inner world can help them understand you better and thus form a lasting and authentic bond with you.
Relocation Advisor, Andorra Guides
In order to maintain friendships, you need to make them feel like they can trust you. When a friend entrusts you with sensitive information, respect their privacy by keeping it to yourself. If you tell a secret, then your friend might find out.
Similarly, you should also avoid gossiping about other people around your friends, because they might think you'd talk negatively about them behind their backs if you're so quick to talk about others. They may still want to hang out, but they'll hesitate to share their inner thoughts and feelings with you.
Chief Product Officer, Videeo
Send Postcards or Letters
One uncommon way to maintain a friendship is by sending postcards or letters. When almost all communication occurs digitally, taking the time to write out your thoughts and mail them can be seen as an extra-thoughtful gesture.
It can also add an element of surprise that emails, texts, and calls don't provide. A quick note to simply say "Hi" can be enough to show how much you care about the other person and remind them of shared memories. Since physical copies are scarce these days, they're more likely than digital messages to leave an impression on your friend.
People and Culture Director, TeamBuilding
Connect Over Social Media
That's why we have it—to connect with our friends. Send each other funny posts over Instagram, or tag each other in memes. It's an effortless way to keep the friendship going and make them smile throughout their day. Weekly communication over digital platforms will do the trick.
Lindsay Malu Kido
CEO, Empower Pleasure
Maintain a Sense of Humor
Almost everyone enjoys and appreciates a good sense of humor. Humor is one of the fundamental aspects of thriving relationships.
Sharing laughter with people who enjoy your company is one of the most fulfilling feelings in life. This creates a sense of security and camaraderie that is pivotal for any thriving friendship.
Chief Product Officer, Pluto
Practice Good Listening
We often think of friendship as being about doing things together or having fun, but one of the most important aspects is simply listening to someone. Taking the time to really hear what your friend has to say and taking an interest in their joys and struggles can go a long way toward building and maintaining a strong bond.
Good communication is key to any successful relationship, and that means listening as well as talking. Showing your friend that you are invested in their well-being by actively trying to support them through conversations can be an easy way to maintain a friendship.
It's also helpful to provide encouragement and give compliments regularly—don't forget to express appreciation for the things your friend does!
Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Prismfly
Find Common Hobbies
Finding a common hobby is one of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to maintain a friendship. Whether it's playing board games, going for walks, or even taking up a new craft, doing something together gives you an opportunity to bond and build stronger relationships.
It also provides an activity that you can look forward to, helping the friendship become a part of your routine. When you share an activity with someone else, it can help you learn more about each other and build a deeper connection. It's also a great way to make memories you can look back on in the future.
Marketing Director, Leeds First Aid Courses
Submit Your Answer
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