The Power of a Greeting Card

The Power of a Greeting Card

Birthdays, Anniversaries, Valentine’s Days, Christmases, even condolences… we send cards out to them all. There’s also a little section called, “Just Because.” Those are all great, but what do you put in the card? Do you laugh at the joke and sign your name? The art form of the card is something we can’t forget. We need to spend less time worrying about what the card already says and spend more time worrying about what the card will say – after you write in it.

When I receive a card that is merely signed, it feels like the thought was not put in it. I’m sure the sender searched through dozens of cards to find the right message, but that isn’t the thought I’m talking about. The thought I’m talking about is the message directly from the sender.

I’m the type of person that isn’t always quick with my words. I’ve even been known to accidentally say one thing and mean another because I didn’t have time to think about what I really wanted to say. However, when I sit down and write, I can communicate way more effectively because I have the time to play with my words like they were Tetris pieces and get the perfect sentiment. Writing a personalized note in a card is the perfect way to express yourself to your recipient.

I like to think of cards as little love notes, except that when I write them to friends and family, it’s more like a friendship note. The key to this is, is including something personal, some kind of anecdote or acknowledgement of an accomplishment. An example could be your son graduating college. You found a card that says “Congratulations on your achievements.” Sure, that’s the right message, but what about the intimate sentiment? Don’t merely sign your name. Include something extra that shows your son how proud you really are. Did he pass his classes with honors? Did he get a great job lined up? Did he pass with a C+ average but worked harder than he ever did in his entire life? Jot that down. Tell him that! And remember, you don’t always have to try and be funny and write something corny – especially on birthdays, but you can if you want. At least you put forth the effort!

If you’re going to grab a card for the sake of getting a card and signing it… don’t. I would much rather my friends show up without a card than give me their signatures; that is of course as long as they aren’t Bill Murray. I would take his signature no matter what.

Most people appreciate the extra mile taken to personalize and acknowledge something special in your relationship with them. This is reminiscent of when your mom used to make you a brown bag lunch and she’d include that embarrassing little post-it that said, “Have a great day! Love, Mom!” You may not have realized it then, but you see now why your PB & J sandwich tasted so much better on that day than any other day.

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