1. Find time- See each other regularly. Make a schedule to see each other, “Then after class, get a smoothie or tea to spend quality time talking and sharing,” says Shasta Nelson, CEO of GirlFriendCircles.com, a women’s friendship matching site.
2. Be positive- Give compliments, try new things as friends, and take pictures together. “Powerhouse female friendships are relationships where women are cheering, supporting and both publicly and privately affirming each other,” Nelson says.
3. Use (but, don’t abuse) social media- Don’t let your “liking” her your post replace meeting together as friends. “Face to face is a conversation, whereas social media is two separate people talking at each other. You can’t ask questions, hold hands, or give high fives online,” Nelson says.
4. Go above and beyond- Facebook make it so easy to wish someone a happy birthday or congratulate them on tying the knot — “but its ease diminishes the value,” says Jan Yager, Ph.D., and author of Friendshifts.
5. Call- If you can’t meet up at least once in a while, aim to call her at least once a month. “It may take an hour or more to catch up, and you’ll say ‘I don’t have time to do that now,’” Nelson says. “You can’t tell a friend about what your horrible boss said because you’d need to also catch her up on other life happenings first.” Stick to quick catch up calls, so you don’t lose touch to begin with.
6. Really listen- “Don’t sit and take notes, but maybe jot down in your smartphone a birthday, name of sibling after a conversation,” says Yager. The next time you see her, ask about something she mentioned earlier, so she’ll know you’re actually listening to her and not just going through the motions.