(These are some cards I made in the past! The “You Are a Gem” is a free download here!)
I’ve been thinking a lot about gratitude lately. Gratitude, obviously, comes in lots of different forms. But I want to talk about one SPECIFIC form right this minute, and that is: the snail mail THANK YOU card.
I used to be SO GOOD at sending thank you notes. It’s something I was raised to believe is doctrine. YOU SEND A THANK YOU NOTE. My mom and my sister BOTH send thank you notes PROMPTLY after I do anything for them or send them the smallest gift! But as my family, business, and thanks that are due have grown, my sanity, time, and will power have not. And I’ve been seriously slacking in the “thank you” card department.
And this is how it started:
Three years ago I heard a woman speak at a conference. She was talking about happiness and how your time is limited. She was saying that you shouldn’t waste your time doing things you THINK you have to do. As an example she mentioned that she did not require her children to write thank you notes. When she said this I was sincerely APPALLED. Haha, as if she had just confessed she bought crack for her kids.
But the rest of her message was so uplifting and convincing, that I understood what she meant. She said that she encouraged her children to be grateful and say “thank you” for gifts, but her time and their time was limited. She explained that she didn’t feel like the practice of writing out a letter for them, or forcing them to write one, was ultimately making them a better person and/or worth the time. I think her stance was that a thank you letter was more about seeming grateful than actually being thankful.
It’s funny because I’m not sure I really agree with that stance, and yet, after I heard it I started kind of letting myself off the hook about missing some thank you letters here and there. I try to always SAY thank you, or send a text or email. But the signed, sealed, and delivered letters have gotten fewer and father between.
And sometimes, I intend on sending a thank you card, so I don’t do a text or email, and then I forget the card, and then I’m just an ungrateful jerk! Even though I had the best intentions.
And I have noticed, that when I receive a thank you letter, I’m always honered and pleased, but that I read it quickly, say, “that was nice” and then toss it. GASP. I hate admitting that. ha. But you know what I mean right? The real joy is in GIVING the gift. So does a “thank you” text or email do the job?
I think part of the reason you send a “thank you” is to let the other person know the gift was received right? And a text or email accomplish that.
So, with all this said, after Gigi’s birthday last year, I didn’t send out thank you notes for her gifts. And I haven’t written “thank yous” for quite few gifts I’ve been given. And you know what, I FEEL HORRIBLE ABOUT IT. HAHA.
So, for me, personally, I’ve decided is SCREW IT. I want to be the type of person who sends thank you notes again. It doesn’t take THAT much time, and if I can afford my diet soda addiction I can afford stamps right?
So I’d like to formally apologize for any gift you have given me and not been adequately thanked for, and also say, THANK YOU!
But I’m SUPER interested, sincerely, on hearing your thoughts about this? Do you send thank you notes? Do you care if you receive them? Are you pissed at me I didn’t send you one?!
For me it comes down to what writing a thank you note does TO ME. It forces me to take time out to be grateful, and acknowledge a good thing that has happened in my life. And I think I need more of that. But I’m not trying to say that you do. I just really want to know what you think!
In other news I got this stamp from Pick Your Plum that I got to customize. I think it was intended for initials, but I made it say, “YOU ARE DA BOMB” cause that’s what I could spell with two alphabets and the limited space. I’ve been stamping it on EVERYTHING and loving it.
And these are my pony cards I talked about in How to be Awesome Part 1! I FOUND THEM! Ha! But really, they should read, “The pony THAT daddy never got you.” Because people were always asking, “Who’s the pony-daddy?” Bah.
Oh and that’s Gigi in my office. I love how wild her hair is. Also I’m afraid of trying to tame it so, I’ve learned to love it.
Ok! Thoughts on thank yous?! Let’s hear it!