A Trick for Writing Thank You Cards

Four or five years ago, my book club read 365 Thank Yous: The Year a Simple Act of Daily Gratitude Changed My Life.

I actually thought the book was kind of lame, but in our discussion of it, my friend Emily made a passing comment that has changed my thank you card writing life.

She mentioned that an aunt (or someone along those lines) had told her that you should never start a thank-you card with “thank you.”

I’ve always struggled with thank-you cards, feeling like I wrote one line and then had basically nothing left to say. You know how it goes – you start out with, “Thank you so much for the new shirt.” And then something lame like “I really love it and appreciate you thinking of me and I’m sure I’ll wear it lots.”

And then think, “I should have started with bigger handwriting. . . ”

But this little trick suddenly made writing thank-you cards so easy for me.

Instead of jumping right into the thank-you, you start with something else like “It was so fun to celebrate my birthday with both of you last week. Spending time with you, especially on a special occasion, is such a treat.”

And then, with two sentences already down, you can transition to, “Thank you so much for your thoughtful gift of that gorgeous shirt. You never fail to pick out something that I’ll enjoy, and I so appreciate your generosity in this case and in so many others. I’m already looking forward to getting together again. Love, Janssen.”

It feels so much less formulaic to me and is so much easier for me to write. I don’t know what it is about that trick, but I’m seriously indebted for life to Emily for suggesting this.

Now if there was just a trick for actually addressing and stamping your thank you cards too. . . .

A simple way to make your thank-you cards more personal!

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  • Reply Diana March 6, 2017 at 7:05 am

    Good point!! I usually struggle with thank yous too and have some coming up to write. I love the addressing and stamping part though, that requires no creative thinking! Haha.

  • Reply Mikayla March 6, 2017 at 9:06 am

    This is great advice, and very timely for me too! I’m getting married this weekend and between two bridal showers and the wedding gifts people have sent early through amazon, I have already written so many thank you cards that it makes my hand hurt just thinking about it. Also, I have read that book and I absolutely loved it!

  • Reply Teresa March 6, 2017 at 2:04 pm

    What a good suggestion!

    I like to write out labels in fancy handwriting for people to whom I write often (family, close friends) when I am looking to do something creative but quick. Then, when it is time to address thank you notes, I pop on the label along with the stamp. I always buy fun forever stamps in bulk when I see them, which makes that part more fun (who doesn’t love getting something with a Wonder Woman or Harry Potter stamp?). And I have bought customized return address stamps from the Etsy Shop Rubber Stamp press and I would highly recommend them!

  • Reply Ashley LaMar March 6, 2017 at 9:26 pm

    What a great little trick!

  • Reply Heather March 7, 2017 at 10:44 am

    This is such a great point! I have a friend who always writes thank you cards in the way you mentioned, but I never thought about that until reading this here! I love the idea. Makes it so much more personal too 🙂

  • Reply Kristen from Pugs & Pearls March 8, 2017 at 7:22 am

    Great tip! I always leave the “Thank You for the gift” to the end, but tend to start with “Thank You for celebrating with us”…Now I’m going to try something like “It means so much that you celebrate with us”. You’re right, that sounds soo much nicer!

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