“There are no words to express my gratitude...” This is the first line in many of my thank-you notes. I know it seems like a cop-out because I’m a writer, but sometimes I can’t even think of words that are adequate enough to convey my appreciation. It can be hard. That’s why we have the greeting card business–so others can say what we seemingly can’t manage.
In this techno-savvy era of emails, twitters, tweets, and bytes, are handwritten notes really still that important? I say, “Yes.” And I’m not the only one.
In, “The Found Art of Thank-You Notes,” an article appearing in the New York Times, fashion publicist Cristian Magni writes: “It is so important, in a digital world, to have the dignity to sit down and write something in your own hand.”
It seems even late-night TV sees the relevance. Have you seen Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show? One of the most popular segments on the show is his weekly “Thank-You Note” sketch. Funny, yes. But it’s also a real reminder of this dying art, or is it a dying art?
I headed off to one of my favorite stationery and gift stores, PAPERDOODLES, to visit with longtime friend, and owner Susie Winkler. And I found that indeed, the hand-written note is still alive and well among us.
Susie has been in the stationery business a long time.
She says, “There are very few things that are more personal than a hand-written note. It can be a thank you, a condolence, or a congratulation. It’s a permanent, palpable sign of thoughtfulness. Whether you are the writer or the receiver.”
Susie says it’s never too early (or late) to start writing.
Whatever your style, you can find a card to express yourself, and personalized stationery is just that–personal. Your stationery speaks volumes even before the card is opened.
Still not wild about the idea of pulling out pen and paper? Consider a study done by Robert Emmons (University of California) and Robin Stern (Yale University) on the importance of gratitude as it relates to your health:
“Clinical trials indicate that the practice of gratitude can have dramatic and lasting positive effects in a person’s life. It can lower blood pressure, improve immune function, promote happiness and well-being, and spur acts of helpfulness, generosity, and cooperation.”
How important is writing a thank-you note after a job interview? I once heard of a girl who applied for a position at the APPLE Store. After her interview she went home and wrote a note thanking APPLE for the interview, but she could not find the address of the store and worried that they would not receive the note right away. The next day, she hand-delivered her note. Did she get the job? Yes, she did.
Did the note get her the job? I don’t know. But it didn’t hurt.
I guess I should mention, the girl in the story was my daughter.
Never underestimate the power of a hand-written note.