Reconnecting with old connections isn’t something we are usually comfortable with. Even with people who were there for you when you needed them and saw your vulnerabilities, it can be hard to reconnect because you don’t know what to say or do. But if you manage to reconnect with old connections, you’ll realize that it’s worth it in the end.
Whether they were your friends or old co-workers, you need to make sure that they know that you still care about them and want to get back in touch. Continue reading if you wanna know why this is so important and how you can reach out to old connections without feeling embarrassed.
Why is it important to follow-up with old connections?
People are always on the move these days. With so many opportunities to explore, it’s not uncommon for people to leave their old connections behind. However, it’s important to reconnect with old friends, acquaintances and co-workers because they might have resources or knowledge that could be beneficial to you. You never know when they might be able to help you. That’s why it’s always good to pamper your network – whether online or in-person. Moreover, people who have been out of touch for a long time may not know what you’ve been up to, so it’s important to keep them updated.
Old connections might be able to help you out and you never know what opportunities might arise. You may be able to find a new job, reconnect with an old friend, or find someone who can help you out in your career. For example, if you are a freelance writer, an old connection from your journalism days might have a story idea for you. They could also be a source of inspiration and motivation.
But more importantly, good relationships in general keep us happier and healthier. It’s been proved by a 75-year-old study on adult development led by psychiatrist Robert Waldinger. This study demonstrates that social connections are really good for us and that loneliness kills. People who are more socially connected are happier, physically healthier and live longer than people who are less well-connected. These reasons are good enough to make us want to look after our network, don’t you think?
What are the best strategies for reaching out to old connections?
Social media has made it easier to reconnect with old connections: you can get in touch with an old friend on Facebook or contact an old manager on LinkedIn in just a few clicks. It’s always a good idea to reach out to old connections and we all have people in our network that we haven’t talked to for years. However, it is important that you do not come across as needy or desperate.
One of the best strategies for reaching out to old work connections is through LinkedIn. It provides a platform for you to connect with old classmates and colleagues without being intrusive. In order to find the right person, you can take a look at your LinkedIn connections and see if there’s anyone in common with the person you want to connect with. If there is, then you have the perfect excuse to reach out via LinkedIn. If you don’t have any connections in common, then it might be worth looking for their email address or phone number on the internet.
You also want to make sure that you are not wasting time contacting the wrong people. So take a look at our old contact list and figure out who would be the best person to contact. It can be hard to know who to contact, especially if you’re looking for a job for instance. The key is not being afraid of contacting people and asking them questions. In order to reach out with confidence, I would suggest preparing a list of reasons why you’re contacting them. The following questions should help you clarify things:
- What do you want from them?
- Do they have an opportunity for you?
- Do they know someone who might be able to help?
When reaching out to old friends, you can use Facebook, Twitter or any social media. If you have their phone numbers it’s even better: calling them to ask for news is a more thoughtful gesture in my humble opinion.
Why you should reread your old emails and messages from time to time
Old emails and messages are like old friends. You need to reread them from time to time to remember the conversations you had with them. The reason behind this is that memories fade over time and it becomes difficult for us to recollect what we’ve written in the past. So, if you want to have a good ice breaker when reaching out to old connections, you should definitely have a look at your chat history.
I know it can be quite time-consuming to reread old conversations, but you don’t need to read it all carefully. Skim messages to have a rough idea of what your last chat was about and get inspired to restart the conversation. You can also learn a lot about your old self by reading them. That could be helpful to know where you left off and give a proper update to the person you’re trying to reconnect with.
Give yourself permission to make mistakes and move on
We all have those days where we feel like we are not good enough. I sometimes think that I didn’t do enough to keep good relationships and I feel guilty about losing some old connections I spent good times with. In these moments, it is important to give ourselves permission to make mistakes and move on.
By being easy on yourself, you will be more confident in your abilities and the chances your reconnection attempt succeeds will increase. You will reach out to old connections and not be afraid of failing because you know that it’s part of the process. And once you are in touch again, make sure to look after this renewed relationship so that it’s worth the effort.
If you wish to extend your professional network with new connections, you should create an account on Lounjee. Our platform has everything you need to reach out to people and make meaningful connections!