Surviving Relocation: Long Distance Relationships For Young Professionals
You got the big position you applied for and now your off to a new locale across the country or even across the globe! This is everything you wanted and more but, as you begin to plan and prepare you realize that you will be leaving your base of friends, your family and possibly even a significant other behind.
Whether it’s part of a rotational leadership program or just a regular internal job relocation, moving long distances for your job can be both exciting and tough. How do you handle the distance? Can you maintain healthy relationships with your friends back home and still enjoy where you are going? t’s never easy but, as I am finishing up just such a move, I would like to share the ways I have stayed in touch with my business associates, friends and family while spending 6 months 2400 miles away.
1. Make friends as soon as you can in your new city. Use networking tools like Meetup.com, company happy hours and service events to reach out to new people and make your transition easier. It’s all too easy to spend too much time on the phone or the internet, avoid the comfortable and push yourself!
2. Stay in touch passively. Use social networking tools like Facebook to stay in touch with your friends, keep up with their lives and share yours. Even the occasional wall post helps but following it up with an email or a phone call is even better.
3. Be responsive! When you are invited to social events by work friends or personal contacts don’t just decline, respond! Tell them where you are, what you’re up to and engage them with questions about home. It will keep you in touch and prevent the impression that you just fell of the map.
4. Increase your share of feed. Take pictures and post them, email them to your friends and family, write a blog, do whatever is necessary to share your activity and experience. If anything, it will give you something to talk about when you do get a chance to catch up.
5. Plan a mini-vacation-visit with your friends or significant other. Depending on where you have been relocated to, it can be an exciting place for the rest of your friends and family to visit. Plan out a weekend around an event in your area and send out an itinerary early to your friends so they can get cheap tickets.
6. Minimize talk time. I am not saying you should never call your boyfriend/girlfriend/mother but, it is really easy to spend too much time talking and not enough time enjoying where you are. Any loneliness or separation is with if you drag out phone calls or dwell on it.
7. Pay attention to your finances. There can be additional financial worries associated with relocating abroad, if you prepare correctly you can avoid the added strain that financial problems can put on relationships.