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Reaching Out to Old Friends

Reaching out to old friends is something that never really crossed my mind until I got older. There are friends who you were super close with a few years ago, and maybe nothing dramatic happened, but your lives went in different directions and the connection slowly faded away. This has happened to me more than I’d like to admit, and it started to really bother me as I got older. Why didn’t I keep up with them? I’d mentally ask myself, and wonder why I felt so lonely in times of need – Because friendships are like flowers, you have to water them to keep them alive. Reaching out to old friends became something that was a goal I set for 2021 and is something I am going to carry into 2022. If you are concerned with reaching out to old friends, keep reading for my experience, as well as reconnecting with old friends message examples.

When I travelled to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, I was nearby Minnesota. This is a rare occurrence – I’m really never that far north, mostly because I have no reason to be. I had been thinking about a few friends, two to be particular, for quite a while before that trip. I was wondering how they were doing, wondering why we lost contact, and just plain missing their presence in my life. I know it sounds corny, but it’s true. I never realized what was missing until I started thinking about the amazing friends I had in college and lost contact with when I transferred.

I also had some degree of FOMO from missing the last few years of college, wondering how everyone left off, who was friends with who; the Instagram updates just didn’t cut it. Everyone posts a highlight reel without posting anything real that’s going on in their life. I grew tired of wondering and decided to pull the trigger and contact my two friends I’d been thinking about, but I had to craft a message first.

I thought about how I’d like to be reached out to, and if I’d respond to an old friend after years of no communication. It’s not like the friendships ended badly, or that we were actively on bad terms, but I couldn’t help having a small voice of doubt in my head. I convinced myself that they might not respond – They might not want to hear from me at all. And that would be okay, as long as I reached out and made the effort to contact them. Then, I reasoned, I know I would’ve made the utmost effort in reviving that friendship.

I decided to reach out when I had something to connect to them. Both of them live in Minnesota, so when I was up north, I thought it was the perfect time to reach out and say hello. It’s a nice message, in my opinion, for someone to say, “hey, I’m close to where you live and I’m thinking of you!” It reminds them that you care about them, you think about them, and that you want to reconnect. I reached out with a message that I write out in the next section. Keep reading to find some reconnecting with old friends message examples, and find out what worked for me personally.

Message Ideas

As promised, here are some message examples for reconnecting with old friends. Some are ones I’ve used, and some are ones I thought of sending to someone but didn’t find the perfect candidate for. I also really only had two friends in mind at the time (maybe more will come up later down the line), so I used a similar message for both.

If you are in their area

“Hi ____! I’m in ____ right now and it made me think of you because it’s so close to (where they live)! I just wanted to say hi since we haven’t talked in forever and see how you are doing :)”

The follow-up message would be something like…

“Love to hear that you are doing well! I wanna hear all about it, would you want to Facetime later this week? I am free ____. Otherwise we can just text if you’re busy, but I’d love to catch up!”

When I sent this message to friends I hadn’t talked to in years, both times, I received a “OMG it’s so good to hear from you, yes, let’s Facetime!” message back. I was truly shocked at how sweet the messages back were; it felt like we never missed a beat and picked up exactly where we left off.

If something made you think of them (a place, an activity, an object, an experience)

“Hi ____! I am/saw/thought of ___ and it made me think of you! I wanted to reach out, although it’s been forever. I really miss you and would love to catch up! Are you free to Facetime later this week?”

Directly stating you miss their presence in your life and want to catch up, no reason necessary (this is totally okay too! I am too shy to do this, but if it works for you, I say GO FOR IT!)

“Hi ____! How are you?! I was just thinking about you the other day and decided to reach out. I know it’s been a long time, but would you want to Facetime sometime this week and catch up?”

All of these options are ok to use, and will probably elicit the same response: I miss you too! Don’t let your anxiety or nerves keep you from rekindling a wonderful relationship, especially if you’re missing it.

Are you going to reach out to old friends? Which message template would you use?

4 thoughts on “Reaching Out to Old Friends

  1. Last week, I was cursing myself for never making some time for a friend. I knew the restaurant the guy worked at, hell, everyone did. I just never stopped by. Unfortunately, last Wednesday, I learned that he had passed. Good Post, and great reminder.

    1. I’m so sorry for your loss! That is never easy. Hope you’re doing okay. I am glad this post resonated with you, it’s something I’ve been really working on recently to make sure I reach out to people when I think of them. Thanks for the comment and thanks for reading 🙂

  2. You have encouraged me to reach out to my bridesmaids. Considering that August was 57 years married, and I’m only in contact with my Maid of Honor, a cousin, I have a lot of reaching out to do. Thanks for the examples.

    1. Ahh I’m so glad this post resonated with you! I hope some of the prompts help – I spent a lot of time thinking about them. Thank you so much for the sweet comment, and I hope your outreach goes well! 💕 as always, thanks for reading!

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