Safi gives you her tips on how to keep your loved ones close despite the distance
Starting university is undoubtedly a big change. It means embarking on a new course, meeting new people and, for many, moving away from home for the first time. Though perhaps daunting, flying the nest and seeing friends settle in places across the country does not mean indefinite isolation. Below are some simple yet compassionate ways of maintaining strong relationships with those far away throughout your time at uni, be it school friends, parents or your significant other.
Letter writing offers a more personal and less filtered mode of communication with loved ones than instant messaging. Not only is a hand-written letter exciting for the recipient (there’s nothing better than opening something other than another TV licence reminder), it can also be somewhat therapeutic for the sender. Taking the time to compose a letter can be a refreshing chance to wind down and reflect. Attach clippings, photos, or even snacks, for added sentiment.
Connect through online games
As cheesy as it may sound, bonding over a game of ‘Words with Friends’ on Facebook Messenger is a simple, special, and severely underrated thing. Taking turns at a digitized board game is an alternative form of a quick exchange during busier times; one that can be intermittent in a way that beats short, meaningless texts.
Watch a Netflix series together
Embarking on a series with someone can allow you to feel connected, regardless of the physical distance. Laugh over comedies together, share your crime drama theories, indulge in tear-jerkers as though you’re snuggled up on the same sofa—if you can resist the temptation to skip ahead that is!
There are not many things more heart-warming than receiving a reminder of special, forgotten times, even if it is just through a tag in a meme on Facebook.
Remind them that you’re thinking of them
Sharing memories with one another is a great way of sustaining your long-distance relationships. Remind someone that you’re thinking of them by exchanging photos of that first time you got drunk together, or other bygone moments that may have otherwise slipped by. There are not many things more heart-warming than receiving a reminder of special, forgotten times, even if it is just through a tag in a meme on Facebook.
Bring keepsakes to your halls with you
University accommodation often has expansive walls and generously sized pin boards that, when used, can transform an empty space into something much more homely. Pin up photos, letters or collages to create an exhibition of your relationships and shared memories for when you’re missing home.
Phone calls or voice recordings
Hearing someone from home’s voice can be comforting, especially as the semester progresses. Telephone or video calls make for an interaction that seems less two-dimensional and more real than instant messaging; with apps like Whatsapp, you don’t need to worry about your bill at the end of the month either.
Make Spotify playlists for each other
Show your loved ones that you’re thinking of them by curating a bespoke Spotify playlist. From unearthing old, nostalgia-rich classics to sharing new recommendations, this way of staying in touch is cheap and easy with no compromise on the sentimental value.