People matter. We all know this. Yet, when life gets busy, it is our relationships that are usually the first to suffer. The urgent crises in front of us take precedent again and again while people get pushed further and further down the priority list. Worse, the people closest to us can bear the brunt of this because we think they will always understand and forgive us. And they might... to a point. However, I've had the great misfortune of losing this gamble more than once as friends gave up waiting for me.
This is the main inspiration behind the weekly practice of #FollowUpFriday. The goal here is not to add even more pressure onto our plate or to use shame or guilt as a weapon against ourselves. Instead, it's a strategy of being proactive and blocking out the time and space necessary to regroup and make sure that our most important relationships don't fall through the cracks.
Thankfully, there's an app that helps me do this. I'm not only the CTO of Contact Mapping, but I'm a paying customer that uses the app daily. It helps me set follow-ups and get nudges when I'm getting behind. Honestly, it's been life transforming. I would sometimes go months without talking to someone important to me, but I've really started to develop a healthy habit of keeping up with them.
Regardless of if you use the app, the mindset of making Friday your Follow-up day can be life-changing. All you need to do is set aside 5 to 15 minutes and make it a point to reach out to at least 2 people that have been on your mind or that you forgot to connect with that week. That's it! Often you'll find that once you get started, you will keep the ball rolling. Friday is a perfect day for this because you don't have to let an entire weekend pass before they get bombarded with work emails on the following Monday.
I hope you give #FollowUpFriday a shot!
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About Rick Manelius
Quick Stats: Chief Product Officer of DRUD Tech. Author of Winning the Lottery Within. Graduated from MIT in '03 (BS) and '09 (PhD). Life hacker and peak performance enthusiast. This blog is my experiment in creative writing, self-expression, and sharing what I've learned along my journey. For more information, read my full bio here or contact me.