50+ Ways to Strengthen a Long-distance Relationship

50+ Ways to Strengthen a Long-distance Relationship

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Written by Andrew Cornale

Friends are the essence of life. They are there for us every step of the way. We all have friends from our childhood, in school, in college, and at the office whom we treasure and cherish because they form a sort of support system for healthy living. Friendship is everything to us and probably one of the important things in our lives. However, friendships require their own unique brand of water and soil to grow strong and healthy. When that fails to happen, they become frail and tend to diminish over time, especially when you separate and, suddenly, the close physical relationship becomes a long-distance friendship.

There are several reasons for friends to part ways. Some will move to other cities or countries to pursue their education, many are focused on their careers, some get married and move away, etc. But Friendships never end because of physical distance. You can still be thick friends even if you’re thousands of miles apart. But you need to look for ways to stay connected with your long-distance friends. Long-distance friendships can be the strongest kind, but you need to put in the extra effort to nurture such a relationship. You need to strengthen the bond between the two of you, especially when you are separated by distance. Here are a few ways to strengthen your long-distance friendships.  

Keep in touch: It is very difficult when friends have to part ways due to various reasons. Everyone has their own career, dreams, and goals to pursue. Your friend has gone to another city or a country to follow her dreams. It doesn’t mean it’s an end to your friendship. Use technology to keep in touch. Contact each other via call, text messages, WhatsApp, or FaceTime. Keep in touch regularly with each other.


A Great Way to Stay Connected with Long-distance Friends

The Friendship Lamp

Two friendship lamps in different geographic locations are connected to each other through their local Wi-Fi networks. Once connected, the lamps can communicate with each other. Each lamp is assigned a particular light color; when one lamp is triggered by tapping the sensor plate at the top, the other one and all other lamps in that network will simultaneously light up in the pre-selected color of the lamp that was touched.

Check Out the Limited-time Discount Offer from FriendLamps


Initiate conversations:  One way to keep your long-distance friendship alive is to have a good healthy conversation. You can initiate a conversation on anything with your friends. It can be a piece of advice on a career move, or to help with an important decision, or share some good news. You can start a conversation about your childhood memories, about how you spent your time together, about your families, your new job, or your handsome boss, etc., Friends don’t have a fixed time of day to call each other unless you are in different countries and your time zones are different. You just have to call and connect and the conversation flows. It’s all about the comfort level you share.

Start a virtual book club: A fun way to get connected is to start a virtual book club. Decide on a book you both would love to read and are interested in. It can be either a thriller, or a love story, or a novel. Fix a particular day in a week to do that. You will be eagerly waiting for that day to read and have fun.

Grow together: When friends part ways and move to different places, where you don’t know anyone, you feel lonely, lost, uncomfortable, and sometimes scared. Call each other and talk, discuss and just share your thoughts, your feelings, and your fears. You feel comfortable when you start sharing these with your bestie. Your friendship grows stronger, when you both are in a similar situation, encouraging and motivating each other.

Don’t get jealous: Friends support each other through thick and thin. They are the support system, who is just a phone call away. You lean on each other for support. All along it was only the two of you. But when your friends start fostering new friendships with other people, don’t get jealous. Be happy for your friend. It doesn’t mean that your friend will cut you out for her new friends.

Send your friend gifts: Being thoughtful is one of the gestures that will be appreciated and treasured. One way to show you care about your friend is to send gifts either on their birthday, at festivals or even to celebrate a special day, a promotion, etc. There are so many affordable ways of gifting and sending gifts. This will surely keep your friendship much closer despite the distance.

Call instead of texting:  In these days, we don’t understand the value behind a personal call. We are so used to texting and messaging that we lose track of when you have spoken to her last. You cannot discuss and share everything over a text. Certain things can be discussed only over a phone call. So go ahead, take your phone and call your friend.

Have annual trips: Friends have enjoyed being together till they had to part ways. That doesn’t mean it’s the end of your friendship. Keep in touch with each other. One of the ways to strengthen your friendship is to plan a vacation together. Choose a place where you both would like to visit. Plan the date and place you both would like to meet up, and make a list of places you want to see. You will be eagerly looking forward to that day, where you can spend quality time with each other. 

Go shopping over Face time: Shopping was so much fun with your friends. When you were together, you would go and shop and have so much fun. Your friend has moved to another place to pursue her studies. You can still go shopping over FaceTime. You can FaceTime and your friend can still tell you what looks good on you when you try it on.

Find something that you can do together: There are so many things which you can do together. You can watch the same TV shows, or a movie, a reality show, or a comedy show together, which you both enjoy watching in the comfort of your homes. You can video call or chat while watching these shows and comment on the characters or their costumes. You can tease each other when you know that your friend has a huge crush on one of her favorite characters. Once friends start talking there’s no end because you don’t need specific topics to talk about, your conversation can be on anything under the sun.

Don’t fear lack of contact: Though communication is very essential in a long-distance friendship, sometimes there’s uncertainty and doubts. When your friend doesn’t respond to your message, even though she has read your message, you wonder what is wrong. It doesn’t mean she is not interested in replying. She must have been busy and had no time to reply. Accept the fact that in the absence of a phone call or a text message from your friend doesn’t mean you are no longer friends or your friend is ignoring you. You make an effort to call them and catch up with what’s happening at their end.

Come to terms with the situation: When you and your friend have been together for a long time and when a career opportunity takes your friend away to another city, be happy for her. Everyone has their dreams to pursue. It is hard to part ways. Come to terms with the situation. This doesn’t mean that there’s going to be a void in your friendship. In fact, your bond will strengthen when you are separated by distance. 

Set a regular date and time: Being in touch is the essence of a long-distance friendship. When your friend is oceans apart and your time zones are different. It is difficult to keep in touch and it can be a challenge. It is always better to fix a time and date when you both can call and talk to each other. Most of the time, friends don’t mind receiving each other’s calls any time of the day, but you have to consider their busy schedules and different time zones.

Remember important dates: You and your friends never missed any important dates, when you were together. You used to celebrate birthdays and other special occasions by meeting at a restaurant or cooking special meals together.  Times have changed and your bestie has moved to another place to pursue her dreams. Though you are in touch with each other, it is very important to remember their birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions. Call and wish them, send them a birthday or an anniversary card, or you can surprise them by sending them a gift. Being thoughtful in a relationship makes it stronger.

Share recipes and cook a meal together: When your friends were staying together and were very close to each other, you had fun by cooking different meals together or you used to take turns to cook and dish out delicious meals. Those are some of the best memories you share. When one of you moves away to pursue your higher education or a career, you feel you cannot relive those moments. You still can have fun cooking together virtually. Make the most use of technology. Share recipes, video call your friend and show them what you have cooked. You can even cook a special dish for their birthday and surprise them. This can be so much fun.

Send “I miss you” cards: Break the monotony of texting, calling, and FaceTiming once in a while; send your friend handwritten cards for their birthdays and other occasions. Send them an “I miss you card” and surprise them. These little things can add spice to your friendship.

Be their support system: Your friend might be living miles away but still wants the same support from you as you expect from them. The distance should not turn into a hurdle in your friendship. Assure each other of your support and that you are there for them in times of need.

If you both like gaming, start playing together: This can sound silly, but it does help in bonding your friendship. Playing games often together is so much fun. Enjoy it and do multiplayer. There are so many games to choose from. So go ahead and have fun.

Sending your friend little things from your place: Your friend is missing her favorite sweet or a book or something that she likes but is not available in the city or country where she currently stays. Buy them and send them to her as a surprise. She will be thrilled. This will remind her of you.

Send them a handwritten letter: Your friend is a fan of snail mail. So surprise her with your long hand-written letter and send it by snail mail. This shows how much you care and when you receive a letter from her, you know that they took time off their busy schedules to write this letter to you.

Avoid excessive communication: You don’t have to communicate on a daily basis. Excessive communication can become boring and sometimes you can run out of words. Communication daily is necessary to keep your friendship going. Sometimes, your friend can get annoyed by your regular calls. Give each other space.

See it as an opportunity: Separation is heartbreaking, especially when you and your friends have been together and have to part ways. Don’t be heartbroken. It doesn’t mean that it is an end to your friendship. Take it as a journey for the two of you. It will keep your friendship stronger. See it as an opportunity to grow stronger.

Make a surprise visit to your bestie’s place: It is so soothing and relaxing to be with your bestie. You haven’t met each other for a long time. Your plans of meeting each other at a familiar spot didn’t happen because of your bestie’s workload. You can visit your bestie and surprise her. She will be shocked, surprised, thrilled, and happy. She will be over the moon if you were visiting her on her birthday, for instance. That will be a very special birthday for her. Create memories together by going out, exploring the place, having a meal, shopping together, and having a wonderful time together. It’s the best way to strengthen your friendship. A solid friendship is too valuable to let go of.

Listen to music together:  Music is soothing to your friendship, especially when you both are music lovers. Listening to music calms your mind, body, and soul. You both can listen to music together virtually. You can even create a playlist for your long-distance friend, through a music streaming service and also collaborate it and create a playlist together. This is not difficult. You can do this with Spotify, by creating a playlist that is sharable and you can collaborate on so that both of you can listen to songs you’ve chosen together. This is one way to fill the void you feel in your friendship. 

Be open with each other: Secrets are best kept with friends. When you are with your friend, you share everything that happens in your lives. Even your dark secrets are shared. You were open with each other and shared your joys and sorrows. You have laughed over silly jokes. That laughter has kept your stress away. Now that you have parted ways with your bestie, you feel that you have lost the closeness that you once shared, the deep conversations you used to have. Talk to your bestie. Start being the kind of friends you used to be. Distance shouldn’t change that.

Do a hobby together: Besties are good at doing things together. If you both have some common hobbies, do it together either by video call or FaceTiming each other. Or you can learn a new hobby together and see who is progressing well in that. Comment on each other’s work. Encourage them, motivate them. It can be gardening, cooking, reading, listening to music, learning a new language, etc. These activities will keep you both glued to each other and are good stress busters for you both.

Focus on maintaining emotional closeness in your friendship: It is easier to maintain a friendship, when you live in the same place as your friend, in the same school, college, or in the same office. You can meet each other at the drop of a hat. That was so much fun. If you wanted a bit of advice, a shoulder to lean on, a listener to your grief, or even a partner in crime (little mischiefs) your friend would be there for you. When one of you moves away, maintaining closeness requires a lot of effort. As long as you work to maintain emotional closeness, friendship can survive and even last across distances. Remember that nothing changes between the two of you, except the distance. 


A Great Way to Strengthen Long-distance Friendships

The Friendship Lamp


Two friendship lamps in different geographic locations are connected to each other through their local Wi-Fi networks. Once connected, the lamps can communicate with each other. Each lamp is assigned a particular light color; when one lamp is triggered by tapping the sensor plate at the top, the other one and all other lamps in that network will simultaneously light up in the pre-selected color of the lamp that was touched.

Check Out the Limited-time Discount Offer from FriendLamps


To keep a friendship strong, build new memories together: You and your friend have so many memories of your childhood, as teenagers and then as adults. These memories are precious. It can be your school trip to a resort or celebrating your birthdays, your harmless pranks on people, climbing trees. You often talk about these wonderful memories to your friend. Since your friend has moved away to another place, do not think you have only your past memories to hold on to. Create new memories together, like a visit to your friend’s place, a fun movie together, a dinner, shopping together, or a stroll on the beach. Think of different ways to create memories that can be remembered and cherished by both. 

Build a good foundation: Friendship also requires a good foundation, especially a long-distance friendship. Friendship knows no distance. If you have been good friends for a long time through the ups and downs, your friendship has a good foundation. Be there for each other, no matter what the situation is. The feeling that your friend is there when you need them, is more assuring and comforting than anybody else.

Typewrite: If you and your friends love writing books or stories, then you have real-time collaborative writing with typewrite.io, which is simple and free. You have to just sign up and log in. You both can use this service to write and edit together like you were next to each other in person.

Go on a virtual tour: Various places have opened to digital tours since the initial shutdowns due to COVID-19. Select a place you and your friend would like to visit. Enjoy your virtual tour together. Check the places to see in that city, like the museum, the zoo, the market square, etc. Check out their traditional food, their culture. 

Make art for each other: One of the things you both can do is art if you love doing it. You don’t have to be a pro. One of you can sketch your friend’s favorite character or do a painting. It could be digital, traditional, or hand-painted. You can also make a handmade item like a knitted sweater or a shawl for your friend. You will be excited to do these for each other. There is much happiness in giving than receiving. 

Create a group chat and introduce them to your other friends: This is another way of connecting with each other and your other friends. Create a group chat including your common friends and the new ones. Introduce your new friends in the group chat. A fun way to stay connected.

Create a traveling scrapbook: Buy a book and fill in your pictures and your favorite memories that you have of you and your bestie. You and your bestie always wanted to create a scrapbook, but could not. Fill in your beautiful memories with a picture relating to that (if available) and send it to each other. This will be a treasured keepsake for you both.

Try a long-term challenge: It is always fun when there’s a challenge among friends. You have been doing this for a long time, till your friend moved away to another place. You can still try setting up a challenge with your friends. Give a certain amount of time to complete the challenge, say about a year. The challenge can be anything, like learning a new recipe, a new language, or finish writing a book. 

Save for a future trip together: Friends always talk about taking a fun trip/vacation together. You both have been busy or you didn’t have enough money to go on that trip. Now that you both have jobs, save up money for the girl’s trip. Plan your trip, the cost involved in the food, and accommodation. Work out and have the plan ready. Once you have saved enough money, you can go for a vacation. It will be a fun-filled and happy trip.

Share pictures: There were days when you both loved taking pictures of everything you came across. You both have a collection of them and have fond memories of them. Now that your friend has moved away to another place, you don’t have the time for taking pictures. Both are busy with their own work. You can make this memorable by sending these pictures or sharing them with your friend, write a footnote under each picture, like where and when it was taken, the date, year, and the occasion. You can also ask your friend to share or send pictures of her place, her home, her office, the market or the shopping street, etc. You both will just love doing this. One of the best ways to stay connected.

Make something: Handmade gifts or the DIY (do it yourself) gifts are the best to gift each other. You both can make homemade gifts or handmade gifts. This is such a personal gift, which will be cherished and treasured. Do whatever you are good at, like a stuffed toy, or a placemat, a knitted table cloth or a table runner, or a hand-stitched apron. 

Have goals: Long distance friendships are difficult, but you both can make it a more fun-filled relationship. When you were younger, you both had some goals, to become something or achieve something. As you grow older, the goals also grow and you are more focused. Discuss and share with your friend your goals and vice versa. Encourage and motivate each other to achieve these goals. Celebrate every milestone have you achieved and keep moving forward. 

Set parameters about how you’ll stay in touch: Especially in a long-distance friendship, you have to work out various ways to keep in touch with each other. Some friends don’t have time, because of their family, or their work and also other responsibilities. Be sensitive to your friend’s needs, or each other’s needs. Things will bounce back to shape. You need to have a lot of patience to keep your long-distance friendship going.

Pay attention to the details: Make an extra effort to remember the little details or the important dates, when you converse with your friend. It could be a training camp she is going to attend, a visit to the doctor, a bossy colleague, a family member’s birthday, or even an upcoming promotion. By remembering these things and asking your friend about these things, either on the phone or virtually, will make a lot of difference. It shows how much you care and are concerned about the milestones and the happenings in their life.

Sharing things about yourself:  When you know your friendship has stood the test of times, and you truly found a soul mate in your friend, you can share things about yourself, like the things that are worrying you and struggling with, not knowing how to overcome or cope with it. Your friend may be able to help you sort things out or advise you accordingly. Trusting your friend with your dark secrets will make your friendship stronger to the point where the comfort level you both share is a joyful experience.

Be there when it matters: It’s a real effort to maintain a long-distance relationship. The distance part may be time-consuming, but it is worth a lot to your friendship. Remind your friend that you are there for her whenever the need arises, to show up either virtually or in-person according to the situation.

Have faith in your friendships: If friends haven’t spoken or kept in touch with each other, it doesn’t mean that they are not interested in each other or it is the end of their friendship. Friendships, unlike plants, don’t die if you neglect them (although they do tend to wither under certain circumstances.) All they need is time, care, and faith. And above all, friendship is built on trust, love, and memories. You should have confidence in your friendship to make it stronger.

Listen: One of the best ways to strengthen your long-distance friendship is listening to your friend. Give a patient ear to what they are talking about. The thought that your friend is feeling lonely in her new place, away from her loved ones, her family, and friends, can be frustrating to her. Pay full attention to what she says, no matter how big or small the matter is. The thought that she has a listening friend will give her solace and peace.

Express gratitude: Always express gratitude to your friends. Compliment them when you have to. Tell her how blessed you are to have a friend like her who is so understanding, caring, and, above all, a rock of moral support. Tell her how grateful you are for her friendship, for her support, and for the things she has done for you.

Allow yourself to be vulnerable: It can be hard to openly deal with sorrow or grief with our friends. You don’t want them to see you cry. They have seen you always joyful, a person full of laughter, and energy. You want friends to see the best of you. But don’t allow this to affect your ability to communicate with your friend. Communication is the backbone of any long-distance relationship. If you stay away from your friend without talking, they will think they have done something wrong and feel sad about being shut out. Then you will have to deal with and worry about a strained relationship.

Connect without distractions: When you are on a call with your friend, do not get distracted and lose concentration, especially with a long-distance friendship. Your friend is taking time off to speak to you and you both are eagerly waiting to talk to each other. You are distracted by the TV show which is on or there’s someone who is speaking too loud or other distractions. Move to a place where you can speak to your friend without any disturbance. Always remember to keep off or steer clear of all distractions, when you are on a call with your friend. The distractions will send a wrong message to your friend, that you are not interested in the conversation.


A Great Way to Nurture Long-distance Friendships

The Friendship Lamp

Two friendship lamps in different geographic locations are connected to each other through their local Wi-Fi networks. Once connected, the lamps can communicate with each other. Each lamp is assigned a particular light color; when one lamp is triggered by tapping the sensor plate at the top, the other one and all other lamps in that network will simultaneously light up in the pre-selected color of the lamp that was touched.

Check Out the Limited-time Discount Offer from FriendLamps


Reach out: Reaching out is more important, especially when your best friend has moved away (long-distance). Reaching out is the best way to remove assumptions. Always enquire or reach out to your long-distance friend and find out, how she is doing in her new place. Has she settled well? Are there any problems to be resolved? Or is she happy with her new job? How is she managing with the change of weather, the language, and the people? Your friend will feel happy, encouraged, and cared for, and feel that she has a friend who really understands and cares for her; because being separated from your loved ones is shattering. So keep in touch constantly and assure her of your support.

Be forgiving: Forgiveness is not a feeling, it is our decision. Do not be irritated or displeased with your best friend’s silence or the absence of call or text messages. This will worry you and you feel disappointed. It is important to note that, friends also have their own struggles. They have to focus on their career, their dream job, their health, and other things that concern them. Please do not assume things and hastily jump to the conclusion that they are not interested in your friendship. You can take the first step in calling her to find out if everything is fine. There’s no harm in taking the first step. Let go of your ego. Friends have their own pace to contact each other. Give her space to contact you. Do not judge by her silence. So forgive your friend for her lack of communicating, which makes your friendship dull and boring. This doesn’t mean that your friendship is over. The best you can do is to support your friend like you always do and hope for better communications in the future. 

Accept your friend for who they are and respect their choices: We all like people who love us the way we are. Similarly in friendships, accept your friend for who she is. When you don’t agree on a decision, let her do her own thing. If your advice is not taken and your friend sees it differently, let her decide. Don’t criticize her or blame her. Respect her decision, which could be the right one for her and not for you. Don’t argue over a decision. Sometimes you need to give in. If your friend has made a wrong decision, she will learn from it.

Compliment each other:  Complimenting each other is one way to keep your friendship strong. Compliment your friend about her good qualities, her dedication in completing a given task, her ability to make new friends, her perseverance in achieving her goals, her calmness in dealing with a struggle, her way of dressing up, etc. Let her know that you admire her for all her qualities.

Take equal responsibility for your friendship: You both have to take equal responsibility to make your friendship stronger. Take turns in planning fun activities, or planning your trip together. If you decide to make a visit to your friend’s place, let your friend make plans to visit you next. Make decisions pertaining to your friendship together. If one person takes the time and effort in maintaining the friendship, then it is not going to last.

Keep personal information confidential: Friends are the best keepers of secrets. When you have known your friend for ages and you trust them and share all your dark secrets with them, it is their duty to keep it confidential and not share it with others. This applies to both of you. Keep secrets share confidential. They have shared it because of their trust in you. Be loyal and do not share their secret stories with others. This will put an end to your friendship.

Admit and apologize:  When you make a mistake, do not delay in apologizing. There is no harm in saying sorry, if you had made a mistake. Admit it. If your friend is upset and a sorry from you will set things right, go ahead and do that. Be humble and do not make that mistake again.

Keeping promises: In a friendship, there are a lot of expectations. It is even more in a long distance friendship. You and your friend had promised each other to meet up once a year, or you both had promised to visit places together, or to call each other daily and other promises. Remember to keep those promises. Remind your friend about the promises you have made together. 

Think of a memory that makes you laugh, and text or email it to your friend:If you are friends from childhood, then you have a lot of memories to think of. When two friends have a significant history, but never thought of it together, it feels so nice to think about the good old days. Think of a funny incident that happened in school and talk about it, or the crush you had on your math’s teacher, or the dance you both learnt and presented before your class. Call and remind your friend about it or you can even send it by text or email. All these memories bring laughter and joy to you both. This activity brings you both closer emotionally though oceans apart. It is one way of letting your friend know that you haven’t forgotten these memories.