Add to multi-tasking, foster friendships

Add to multi-tasking, foster friendships

Whatever happened to your childhood friend, your best friend in school to whom you pledged ‘never to be apart?’ Those notes on friendship on chocolate wrappers, getting the same hairstyle done; for that matter looking at the same guy in the class and sharing secrets amidst giggles — do all these seem like distant memories?

Somehow, friendship links get cut off as a woman takes on different roles in life. Is it true that women find it harder to maintain long-term friendship with childhood and college mates than men?

Says Manasi Prasad, a Carnatic vocalist, “I agree that keeping in touch with childhood friends, for that matter even with current bunch of friends, is a tough task for women. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that we women have a lot more demands and expectations to meet in life. Men have more social avenues for interaction unlike women who have to think of a simple meeting with a friend as a planned occasion.”

Besides women, being multi-taskers, find little time for themselves or for socialising. “The life of a woman in terms of her college days, career, post-marriage and motherhood is very different, as compared with that of men. Yet if you want to keep in touch, you will find a way to do it,” she says.

Whether it is catching up over a smoke at a local adda or meeting at a rasta chaiwala, sharing a cup of chai, men do not really have to bother about the place where they are catching up with pals.

Nevertheless there are women who feel catching up with friends and being in touch with old ones is not a daunting task if one makes the effort.

According to Nisha Millet, director, Nisha Millet Swimming Academy, “I have always been at the pool, rather than at school, yet maintaining friendships with my best buddies has never been a problem. Whether it is with school friends or with swimming friends, being connected has always been part of my life.

We make it a point to catch up once in a while. I also personally feel social networking sites  are a great way of being in touch with each other, whether it is sharing pictures or just being in touch to say we are there for each other.”

If time management is the keyword in staying connected, this can be utilised in being in touch with friends in the same city or anywhere else in the world. While some agree that social networking sites like Facebook have brought them close to their oldest friends, there are others who feel if you want to be in touch you will somehow make way for it regardless of the use of modern aids.

Someone like Janet Supriya, a 22 year-old-call centre executive, says: “Men have the advantage of catching up at any point of time or any place unlike women where everything has to be planned meticulously. However, I do feel we can change this idea of making it like a one-off event and catch up with friends more often if we girls put in a bit of effort.”

Remembering each other’s birthdays,  making a point to gift little things or just dropping in at a friend’s place once in a while to ask how she is doing can help women stay connected. For that matter making a phone call once in a while to ask how your friend is doing and sharing whatever is happening in life does help in getting the feeling that friends are around when required.

With SMS, Internet, e-mail and social networking sites, women most definitely have the advantage of being connected with their oldest buddies. All one requires is to primarily have the desire to be connected and take an extra effort for ‘me-time.’

Use technology to stay in touch

*Keep in touch over phone, email or meet up when your friend is in town.

*Communicate with each other as often as possible. Make that call to show you remember her once in a while.

*Send her a card or a bunch of flowers whenever there is an occasion like a birthday. It shows you care for her.

*Be a good listener when your friend calls you. Listening makes one feel you are there for her when needed.

*Use technological tools like social networking sites to be in touch.

*If meeting outside at a specific venue is a problem try and work out meetings at each other’s homes at convenient timings.

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