5 Ways to Keep in Touch in the New Year

Mother and daughter using video chatFor many people, there never seems to be enough hours in the day. Unfortunately, one project that too easily can get pushed to the side is keeping in touch with loved ones, especially if they live far away. Unless they’re directly involved in your daily activities, it sometimes may seem next to impossible to find the time to catch up.

For one’s own wellbeing and that of your relationships, it’s good to carve out time in your schedule to keep in touch. With the help of today’s technology and the many options available, keeping up-to-date with the lives of loved ones near and far has never been easier.

Here are five ways to keep in touch in 2016 with people who matter most to you:

1. Make a good, old fashioned phone call.

Cell phones allow us to stay connected with friends and family, no matter where we are (as long as we’re able to get a signal, of course!). Does your child have a team practice on a specific night of the week? You might plan to call your loved ones during that time. Let them know ahead of time so that they can expect your phone call.

2. Take your phone call to the next level with a video call.

Sometimes, hearing your loved ones’ voices on the phone is not enough. Thanks to technological advances, you can solve this problem with a video call. FaceTime on iPhones (or any Apple product), and online solutions such as Skype and Google Hangouts, which require Internet access and a webcam, enable virtually anyone who has the technology to connect via video, including internationally.

3. Share music playlists.

If you and a loved one have similar tastes in music, sharing a playlist can be a great way to show that you are thinking of him or her. Various apps allow you to create a custom playlist for streaming music that you can then share directly with friends. Whenever your friend listens to the playlist, you can imagine that he or she is likely to think of you. Swapping music, even just a couple songs, can be a fun and simple way to show loved ones that they remain top-of-mind.

4. Get social with social media.

Social media networks can be a quick way for busy parents to keep up-to-date on the lives of their loved ones. However, it’s important not to rely on social media for staying in touch, since some people don’t have time to use it regularly, or simply don’t like it and don’t use it. Rather, enlist social media as a starting point for getting back in touch, such as by telling a friend, “I saw the pictures you posted of Susie’s recital. It looks like everyone had a great time!”

5. Plan a trip.

There’s nothing better than spending quality time with the people you care about. If some of your friends and family live far away, consider planning a trip together. You might select a locale that is central to all of you, or that none of you has visited and that you’d all like to explore together. Various travel, state, regional, and country websites can help you plan itineraries together and seek out great deals.

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