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5 Ways to Catch Up With Friends That Don’t Involve Coffee or Alcohol

Did you read that headline and think, “what’s the point?”
Look, we get it. A coffee or after work catch up is like the bastion of friendships. Great relationships have been forged in the foam of a flat white.
But as we get busier those spontaneous catch ups just get that much harder to organise.
You and your friends now have serious jobs that require late nights, budding side-business, partners and dogs that need to be walked (the dog, not so much the partner). It’s got a lot harder to find the time to sit down and share stories, without being distracted or having a waiter give you the dirty eye because there’s 20+ people in line waiting for your table (#Melbourneproblems).
Yet, good friendships are so important, especially when life gets busier and you’re working harder to make your dreams a reality. Friends provide a sounding board for your problems, a cheer squad when you need a pick-me-up, and a second opinion when you’re trying to figure out what’s next.
Instead of letting those friendships wane in the face of busy-ness, we suggest finding new ways of catching up that let you strengthen those relationships and let you have fun together.

Try out a dance class

There’s a certain amount of intimacy that comes from dropping, locking and grinding out to Beyonce turned up loud alongside your bestie. Trying out a new class together is a great way to have a laugh, bond and catch up all at the same time, while getting in some bonus exercise. Plus, you might just discover a new love - giving you an excuse to meet up every week. Search for local dance schools near you both and see what casual classes they offer, or just turn up to an open day.

Go for a walk

In our busy lives, sometimes it’s difficult just to find time to get out and enjoy the nice weather. So why would you trade a sunny day to sit inside a dark cafe?
Call your friend and get them to meet you at your favourite park/lake/beach. Grab beverages for the both of you on the way, then take a leisurely stroll. You’ll have plenty of time to catch up on all the goss, plus all that sunshine and fresh air will help lift your mood. You could also take it in turns to pick the location, giving you a chance to find a new walking spot too.

Have them over to your house

Every time we watch movies where people just drop into each other's houses for a coffee, we think - “yeah, that’s nice. But so weird if that happened in real life”. But why is it so weird? I remember my parents having their friends round for afternoon tea all the time when I was young (it was the only time they brought out the good biscuits).Now it feels like we rarely invite people around just for a cup of tea and piece of homemade cake.If you’re worried about your house not being perfect or just being a bit too messy to have people round, don’t. We bet your friends don’t care a bit about the dirty dishes in the sink or old couch in the living room. They just want to hear all about your latest job and potential new love interest.

Go exploring together

Found a new shop/market/food truck you want to check out? Adventures are better with friends.
We bet you have a friend who’d totally be up for a random explore. Send them a message, pack a day pack (hey, who knows where you’ll end up…) and set off across town to discover the latest donut truck or amazingly awesome op shop.
Even if it turns about to be not as great as you thought, you’ll still have plenty of time to catch up and swap stories of all those random adventures you took when you were younger.

Host a crafternoon

We bet most of your friends has a secret craft activity they do while watching Orange is the New Black. Crochet, colouring, knitting, not-your-nanna’s-needlepoint. You could take it in turns to host a crafternoon event where you teach each other your favourite crafts. Or just get together with your chosen craft for chats, cupcakes and champagne.
Crafting can also help to relieve stress and improve cognitive function, which helps you work more productively.

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