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You’re tired and feeling a little “blah.”
You are thinking about all the things you must get done before calling it a day.
You decided to stop by the mailbox-something you don’t do every day because more than likely, it’s filled with a bunch of junk mail.
Like most of us, you stand there mindlessly sifting through advertisements, coupons, life insurance offers, credit card applications, and something stops you.
Like a foreign object, you stare at it suspiciously.
You look carefully at the front and then slowly flip it over and look at the back.
“It’s a card of some sort,” you think to yourself.
“Why would ‘so and so’ send me a card?” you ask yourself.
Still standing in front of your mailbox, you rush to open it at first, but hesitate enough to slow your efforts. Your heart beats a little faster with anticipation.
With shock and amazement, you think, “Yes, it’s a card!” A beautiful card with fancy lettering.
You investigate the contents further and discover a hand-written message.
As your eyes continue to scan the contents, there’s a tingling feeling in your heart as a smile slowly appears on your face.
You are happy.
You feel special.
And you should.
Think about it.
Someone took the time to go to a store to browse hundreds of greetings cards just to find that special one for you. Not only that, that person actually wrote a heart-filled message in it, put a stamp on it, and took it to mailbox so it could be delivered to you hoping it would make you feel appreciated, hoping it would make your day a little brighter.
And it did.
The power of the written word.
“I love and appreciate you!”
“I thought of you today!”
“I’m praying for you!”
“You are so thoughtful!”
“Hello, how are you today!”
“Thank you for helping me!”
“Wow, I had a great time!”
“Your support means the world to me!”
Sharing your written words of appreciation with others can have an even bigger impact than journaling privately.
In the April 3, 2019 issue of marieclaire.com , Samantha Boardman writes, “Putting pen to paper or sending a thank you email may seem unnecessary or feel uncomfortable, but research tells a different story. According to the recent study “Undervaluing Gratitude,” by researchers at the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago, we systematically underestimate the positive impact of expressing gratitude and overestimate how awkward an expression of gratitude might make someone else feel. Misunderstanding the consequences of saying thanks keeps us from engaging in a simple action that would make us and someone else a little happier. The conclusion of the study is crystal clear: Every time we don’t express gratitude, we are missing an opportunity to give others and ourselves a boost.”
In other words, personal notes can really brighten a person’s day, and the positive vibes are far-reaching.
Keep reading to discover why you may want to show your gratitude with words, starting today.
Notes of Gratitude Still Matter
In a busy world, we can get caught up in ourselves and the things we absolutely must accomplish each day. It’s easy to forget to acknowledge the important people in our lives. It’s precisely for this reason that receiving a note of thanks or appreciation is so very meaningful. People simply don’t receive these spontaneous offerings on a regular basis. That’s why setting aside the time and taking the effort to write such a message is so powerful, for both you and the receiver.
Sharing Gratitude Strengthens Bonds
A personal note or message goes far to show you care. Words have meaning, but it’s often said that actions speak louder than words. The recipient of your note will be surprised to receive it. A positive surprise almost always improves someone’s day and mood. This can be especially impactful if you intentionally send your message to someone you know is going through a rough patch.
Regardless, this small gesture will go far to strengthen existing bonds because it’s such a customized act. When people feel a personal attachment, they tend to experience feelings of closeness and meaning. Your written acknowledgement of their importance in your life will surely affect your relationship in a positive way.
Ideas to Get You Started
Your words of gratitude don’t have to be in hand-written form, though it is truly a nice touch that’s a rarity these days. You can send an electronic correspondence, if you prefer.
Your message doesn’t have to be long, either. Any written words of appreciation will be a start and can be quite meaningful.
Here are some examples:
- Drop a post-it note of love in your child’s lunchbox
- Slip a little love letter into your significant other’s coat pocket
- Send your colleague an email thanking them for their assistance
- Mail your best friend a funny card with a personal note of appreciation just because
- Text a buddy a note of support on a difficult day
- Give your doctor or other professional a written message of thanks for their service
- Write a letter to a loved one expressing your indebtedness
This is just a short list to spark your own creativity. People from your past, older relatives, neighbors, kids’ teachers and other meaningful people in your life should be considered as recipients for your words of gratitude. If possible, try to take on this practice daily, at least for a while. You’ll see the momentum can lead to some pretty amazing results.
Celebrating the life you have while creating the life you want.
Ode 2 the good life! It’s the only life you should live.