Trapped in a "cult of busy", you tell your friends you can't meet up, and they have probably said the same thing to you. It happens. But to maintain that strong bond, you need to stop guilt-tripping each other.
You've probably been on the receiving end of a call from friends who say you never make time for them any more; you've maybe even made that call sometimes. This can strain a good friendship. Personal development trainer Marie Forleo recommends instituting a "no guilt agreement":
We never make each other feel guilty for anything. And when we do get together, we pick up exactly where we left off. You need to set up a "no guilt agreement" with your friends, and it simply means no guilting each other, period. And if someone can't sign that, you really need to consider editing them out of your friendship circle.
You might not even be as busy as you think you are, but Forleo's advice is not about that. It's about understanding that your friends lead full lives just like you do, and they want to meet you too. Just because they can't isn't a reason to guilt-trip anyone. And before you say "good friends don't guilt trip", let's remember guilt trips don't have to be intentional — a simple joke ("dude, you can't come? Laaaame!") can come across differently to one person than it does to others.
Check out the full video for other great tips on how to hang out with your friends even when you have a crazy busy schedule.