You’d think that as creatures with a finite amount of time, humans would be better at tracking the blasted thing. Instead, the years often slip us by. One day we’re at college, and the other twenty years have passed, and people we used to see every day are now strangers we haven’t contacted in ages. It all happens in an eyeblink. If you haven’t felt that way yet, don’t worry: you’ll get there.
Facebook has more than helpful chatbots and old wedding photos: it can help you track down and contact pretty much everyone you’ve ever met. If you don’t know how to do that, don’t worry, this article includes tips at the end. Still, the existence of that tool begs the question: since you can contact those old friends, should you? Let’s look at the pros and cons.
The argument in favor of reconnecting
You may have heard that there is a loneliness epidemic out there, or even felt it yourself. Be it as a single man, single father, or a husband with few friends outside your primary relationship; it’s getting harder to make real friends and connect with people across the board.
Reconnecting with old friends won’t just allow you to get in touch, learn the news, and enjoy some sweet nostalgia for times gone-by; it may also be a shortcut towards extending your circle of friends again.
After all, reconnecting with someone you already know may be easier than starting from scratch.
The argument against reconnecting
Sometimes people drift apart from each other for no apparent reason. But often, there is a good reason why your friendship with a person didn’t last. The person your nostalgia glasses paints as wonderful, funny, and caring might not have been any of those things, and reconnecting with them will ruin the good impression you had of them for all those years.
On top of that, people change. You may find that your old friend is very different from what you remembered, or that you have grown up while that friend stayed the same, rendering you two no longer compatible.
Finally, reconnecting with someone who is immature may lead to one of the most frustrating experiences ever: that of being treated like someone you haven’t been in ages. You may even end up indulging in some old habits while spending time with that person.
But don’t let these negatives dissuade you. These are more warnings than reasons against reaching out; things to keep in mind, reasons to back out if the interaction starts going south.
In general, touching base with people you like is a pleasant experience, and can help you understand your past, as well as see how far you’ve come in the present.
Where to start
Finding people on Facebook can be tricky, but the good news is there are a dozen methods you can try, and you only have to get lucky once.
On the Facebook search bar, you can look up people by their name. That will yield you a vast number of results, but you can narrow that down by ticking the box that shows you only friends of friends.
Facebook also allows you to find people by their email address. So, if your friend isn’t answering emails, try tossing that address on the search bar.
The best way to find people, however, is probably to follow the chain of friends. Look at the friends you already have, and try to figure out which of them may have the person you’re looking for in their friends list, or who may have someone who does have the person you’re after.
It’s easy to get lost and frustrated when going through lists of hundreds of friends, but remember, you only have to get lucky once. And you can always message other friends to see if they have leads on the person you are after. Maybe your target isn’t on Facebook, but someone has his phone number. There is always hope.
This content is sponsored by Shahina Parvin.