Communication in the digital age is tricky. We’re more connected than ever before, yet it’s all too common to feel isolated and out of touch with the people who really matter most to us. Your smartphone can actually help you be a more mindful communicator though. Here are two apps to help you get started.
One of the biggest challenges of staying in touch with loved ones is remembering to reach out when life gets hectic. Stay in Touch is an app that helps remind you when it’s time to get in touch with a person or people of your choosing. To use it, you simply enter a person’s name and the last time you connected with them—you can also fill out a comment field in case you wanted to reach out about something specific, like their birthday or their first day at a new job. You set a date for the next time you want to reach out and tell the app when to send you a reminder. The app takes care of the organizing; all you have to do is make the call.
The Bond app is similar to Stay in Touch, but it offers you choices for how you want to get in touch, including phone call, text messaging, email and a variety of networking and social apps like LinkedIn and Facebook. You simply choose what method of communication you want to use and the app will show you all of your available contacts within that category (like all of your Facebook friends, for example). You select a specific person or people, then choose how often you want to stay in touch and set notifications reminding you to reach out. The best part about the app is that the notification itself helps you connect immediately—if you’ve chosen a call as your method of communication, for example, you just open the notification and click “call.” You can customize these notifications to go off during specific hours, like setting your work-related communication reminders to go off during work hours and scheduling your nudge to call your mom for when you get home.