Schedule days for phone-calls, when you and the family member you are calling would be least busy.
If you see some news on Facebook, be sure to contact them in person, not comment or like online.
Make note of special dates (birthdays, anniversaries, etc)
Keep track of phone-numbers, cellphone numbers, Skype account names, etc.
Be sure to see them in person if possible
How often do you speak to your family?
We all lead lives of our own, and as we grow older it only seems our lives get busier. School can follow most of us into our twenties, jobs can start as early as sixteen. Planning for our careers can be overwhelming, we have bills, rent, agendas and people that we try to fit into them. For some people, there may be engagement, marriage, creating a family of our own. At the end of the day we may come home exhausted, with a headache, to a sink of dirty dishes, laundry that needs to be done for tomorrow, and our cat that immediately starts crooning for our attention.
Family and friends make up a lot of people for some, maybe not so many for others, but regardless of number we find ourselves trying to make time for all of them. There may be some of us who are able to contact every single important person, family, friend, or otherwise in a run of day. However, for most of us, it is a task that is rarely, if ever, completed. In the world of ever-growing technology, ways to keep in touch have only gotten easier. Long gone are the days of standing leashed to a certain room of our home by a phone cord, or cramming ourselves into a tiny payphone, fumbling in our pocket for some spare change. There are cellphones, texting, Skype, among many other forms of communication, that make our world easier.
If anything, having more means in which to communicate gives us even less of an excuse as to why not to keep in regular contact with our family. It is good to check in and ask how they are, and vise-versa – even though we might have seen on Facebook. A call or text adds a personal touch.
As for older family members who are out of the loop of things such as Facebook and even cellphones, it is good that we call. My grandmother for instance, is almost eighty and lives by herself in a big house. She uses a cane and doesn't get out as much as she used to be able to when she was more mobile. Her only form of communication is her phone.
My whole jarring incident and inspiration for writing this article stems from some recent news. I had been lost in the tussle of moving into my new apartment, starting my fourth year university, and working my part-time job. I hadn't called her in a while. I found out recently from my mother that she is very sick. Hearing that information second-hand, especially when I should have called her to check in, made me feel terrible. She is improving, I may add, but that night after I received the news, I cried for hours, felt sick with worry, and could not wait to call her the next day.
Don't wait to hear news like this to make your phone call or, in this case, a visit. Seeing our family in person, if it's possible, is much better than a phone-call. Even if you drop in for a few minutes, or stay for hours, you'll walk away feeling happy, and likely so will the person you visited. Don't limit these visits to holidays, either, because it's more of an expectation and less of a surprise. If distance is an issue, phone-calls and messages should be even more vital and sent more often.
You never know when something negative could occur, and keeping up regular communication with your family members is more important than you realize. It shouldn't be a chore, rather we should strive to make it a priority in our busy lives.