Reach Out First

439 Words • Friendship • 05/17/2024

There are the active and the passive, the sender and the receiver, the outreacher and the outreached.

there are benefits to being the one who reaches out first

  • reaching out means they might include you in other things—people forget about you sometimes don’t take it too personally and don’t be too proud to take opportunities when they present themselves to you they are not exactly consolation prizes but can appear like it
  • you can set the intention of the hang out in a way that maximizes connection in a way that you cannot assume that the other person will prioritize but if they are a good friend they will always appreciate

It takes start up energy, planning energy, protection against rejection energy, waiting energy to be the sender which doesn’t mean that you should be more conservative in reaching out but instead should seek to lower energy costs of outreach. These costs scale unpredictably when it goes beyond just planning with one other person.

  • reducing energy expenditure via avoidance bad

put the ball in their court for scheduling

  • try not giving them a strict timeline of “oh i’m free this this and this day this week just let me know” (at first) because this is a lot of energy on your part
  • instead find a way for them to be able to schedule things if they are busy that’s one thing but if they have time and you put the effort into reaching out then i think it’s acceptable
    • just because you reach out does not mean that you are responsible for all pieces of the interaction, if that is assumed then there’s a weird power dynamic and/or that person is just a lazy or bad friend

have something in mind

  • nothing kills plans better then “do you wanna go anywhere?” or what do you wanna do
    • there’s a time and place for asking those kinds of things but a lot of lazy people won’t have anything in mind and thus will stall negotiations
    • illusion of choice/forced choice where you give them a few options of things that you think might be cool to do together as to streamline the process (this is upfront energy cost but at least shaves off some interaction time and waiting energy cost because of reduced potential back and forth over text)

if you can plan something recurring that’s the jackpot

  • check in about if it’s still happening every time but having a time place etc cuts down on a lot of planning cost and helps attune expectations

Other Friendship Posts

In Defense of Medium Friends

A medium friend is someone who is beyond an acquaintance but not a close friend. I argue that these are a deeply important type of relationship.


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