A few years back, my dear friend, Julie shared with me her rekindled love of handwritten notes and cards. She realized handwritten communication was quickly becoming a lost art. So, she started a crusade (of sorts) to bring them back. She had just read a book called, 365 thank Yous by John Kralik. I decided to read it while my husband, kids and I were at our vacation home in Utah. It was the first book in years, I finished in one day. The story is a recount of Mr. Kralik’s experience of writing one thank you note a day for a year, what he learned and how his life changed by simply letting others in on how he appreciated them. I was inspired, to say the least.
It wasn’t long after, I began to see posts on Julie’s Facebook wall from grateful friends, who received cards and notes from her in the mail. I wanted to do this! But as a wife, mother and business owner, I barely had time to write out my grocery list- let alone 365 letters sharing my feelings.
Fast forward to a few years ago, when I became single. In November of 2013, I started a ritual. I committed to write one thank you card for each day I was at work. First, I made a list of 20 or so people/businesses that had touched/helped me over the past year. I would write them out on my 15 minute break and pop them in the mail at lunch. The feedback was rewarding to say the least. It made me feel good that I could share my feelings of appreciation with others without actually having to engage in a conversation with them.
This is my third year in a row, and I wish I could tell you that I’m up to 365 Thank Yous a year or even a full 30 for each day in November, but my list is still roughly 20. However, I believe the rewards are just as sweet. This year I have thanked:
The tire shop, where I get air in my tires every other month
A long-lost girlfriend
And even a guy I went on one date with last month. Actually, he just received the card yesterday and called and left the sweetest voicemail. I had thanked him for reminding me there were still true gentlemen out there. The appreciation was apparent in his voice and I don’t think I will ever delete that message.
The lesson here, is never suppress a kind thought. And once you put those thoughts in writing they will never be forgotten.
Check out Julie’s Blog A Letter A Week