Maintaining meaningful relationships is difficult as we age. With commitments like spouses, children, and careers, it’s hard to make time for friends.
There are benefits to keeping your friends close, though. A study from Harvard found that meaningful relationships can boost life span and brain health.
How can you make friends or rekindle old friendships after a long time apart, though?
We’re about to reveal nine things to do with friends to help you reconnect. Whether it’s been five, ten, or twenty-five years since you’ve last seen each other, these activities are sure to have you laughing and reminiscing about old times.
1. Visit Your Old Haunts
Meeting at one of our old favorite places to hang out might be a fun way to recreate the past.
Did you use to go for lattes at the local coffeehouse? This might be one of the perfect places to hang out with friends – informal and chill.
Maybe you used to meet at a pub for a pint every Saturday night. That might be one of the most fun things to do with friends at night.
Visiting the places you once frequented together can help you both to reconnect.
2. Try Something New
Here’s something on the opposite side of the spectrum from our last suggestion. If it’s been years since you last connected, you may not want to meet where your friendship once thrived.
Instead of reverting to your old hobbies and past times together, why not create something new? Find a class in your area that you’re both interested in.
If you’re on tight budgets, check out websites like Groupon for discounts on activities. These sites offer deals on things like fitness and art classes and cooking courses. You can even score sweet deals on attractions like escape rooms and zoos.
3. Have a Sleepover
What kid didn’t have a sleepover when they were growing up? Why not recreate those feelings of excitement by inviting your friend to a sleepover.
You don’t have to stay up all night, gushing about who you have a crush on, either. Use the time together in the comfort of your home to talk about what you’ve been up to.
If you want to throw it back to elementary school, bring out the board games. Buy some snacks and put on some of your favorite movies from back in the day.
If you both have children, include them in the sleepover. Maybe your adult friendship will inspire a lifelong connection between your kids.
4. Vacation or Daycation
Have you kept in touch with your friend but have seen each other face-to-face in some time? A getaway vacation may be the perfect time to reconnect.
Fly to Mexico, backpack through Europe, embark on a road trip – the possibilities are endless.
If you can’t afford to take time off of work, consider a daycation. Rent a hotel room in a nearby city and spend the day exploring what sites it has to offer. Research the local eateries and pubs and make a day of it.
5. Go for a Hike
If you’re lucky enough to live somewhere with ample trails, consider going for a hike together. This involves far less of a time commitment than a vacation or sleepover. You’ll be able to catch up with one another while connecting with Mother Nature at the same time.
Be sure to research the hiking trails before embarking on your journey. You shouldn’t choose anything too challenging. Unless, that is, you want to remain breathless your entire visit.
Take your and your friends’ fitness levels into account when choosing the trail. Your best bet would be a hike that is suitable for beginners. Next time you’ll be able to pick something a little more difficult if your fitness levels allow.
6. Read a Book Together
If you have the same taste in book genres, start a two-person (or more) book club. Take the same novel out from the library and set a goal to read it within a specific time frame.
Once you’ve both had time to finish the book, meet over coffee to talk about it. Find discussion questions online and answer them together. You’ll be able to deepen your friendship through your mutual love (or hate) of the books you read.
No time in your busy schedule to read an entire book cover to cover? Maybe an Article Club will work better for you. You’ll both read the same article and then get together to discuss your thoughts on it.
7. Get Crafty
You know all those craft projects you pinned on Pinterest in 2012? What better time to do them than with a friend?
Scour through both of your Pinterest pages and find a craft or two that you both want to do. Split the cost of the supplies and plan to spend an entire afternoon or evening together.
Your craft session doesn’t have to feel like an elementary school art class. Buy a bottle of wine or get some Old Pal Provisions to share for an adultified DIY meeting.
8. Volunteer Together
Is there anything quite as virtuous as volunteering? Yet only one of every four Americans carves time out of their schedule to do so.
If you and your friend choose to volunteer together, you can hold one another accountable. It’s much more difficult to back out when there’s someone else waiting on you to show up.
9. Time Travel
Have you been looking for an excuse to pull out the old photo albums? Now’s the time.
Take a step back in time and relive some of the moments that brought you two together in the first place.
Remember that time she had too much to drink, and you had to step into the Mom role to take care of her? How about when you “borrowed” your parent’s car to take an impromptu road trip?
For the initiated, try to recreate some of those old photos. It’s always fun to put the new and old pictures side-by-side to see how much you’ve changed.
Things to Do With Friends
Hopefully, we’ve given you some ideas you can see yourself putting into action with your pal. These things to do with friends will help reconnect you two and rekindle your friendship.
Check out the Relationship section on our site for more ways to strengthen the ties in your life.