susanby Susan Birmingham

It’s the little things that we take for granted that will make someone’s day. When was the last time you got a card in the mail from someone? Not an email but a real card, delivered by the mailman. How did it make you feel? The fact that someone took the time to think about you is really quite special.

In the 21st century everything is so immediate. It’s almost as if the minute you think about something – poof, it appears. With email, Twitter, Facebook, Instant Messaging, Texting, etc. there is an instantaneous gratification that both the sender and the receiver get. Get my drift? The art of writing a letter, a note, or a sweet something is not what it use to be.

I love when I get a card from someone, I feel special. My dad was a GREAT letter writer and card sender. It was one of his most memorable habits my dad had and there was never an occasion that he forgot. In fact up until the day he died, over eleven years ago, he would send me a letter at least once or twice a month. I use to feel bad when I thought about him and how good he was about staying in touch and the fact that I didn’t respond the same way to him especially since he made it so easy. Each letter came with a self-addressed stamped envelope just waiting for something to go inside of it and get sent back to him.

Today I do not feel bad because I learned a lesson from that experience; let people know that you care. It is so simple and such a little thing to do; it just takes doing it, that’s all. Some people are really good about sending a card, note or postcard. For example our dog passed away last month and it was comforting to receive so many sympathy cards in the mail. Both my husband and I were very touched by the thoughtfulness of everyone.

It reminded me that it is the little things that make the difference and sending / receiving a card in the mail is one of those little things. Whether you go to the store to get a card or you get one while in the comfort of your own home by using an on-line system like SendOutCards, it is so rewarding to send someone a card.

Here are five occasions when a card would be perfect to send.

1. Just Because – This is the perfect occasion when you are thinking of someone, go the “extra mile” (which is not really a mile, tee hee) and send them a card to let them know that you are thinking about them.

2. Missing You – How many times do you let people know that you miss them? You may say, “I miss you” which is great, yet think of the look on their face when they get an actual card from you that says, “I miss you”.

3. I love You – This is done on the most famous love day, Valentine’s Day, however what about the rest of the 364 days of the year? Saying I love you is great and showing someone you love them – even better!

4. How Are You? – How often in conversation do we automatically say, “How are you?” and then proceed to tell them all about how you are. I know that I am guilty of doing that. When sending someone a “How are you?” card you really do make it all about them.

5. Let’s Celebrate! – Everyday is a celebration of life. This is another one of those things that is taken for granted. STOP taking it for granted, let someone know that life is to be celebrated. Just by sending them a card you have already celebrated that they are special is your life.

I am grateful for my lesson learned from not responding to my dad’s letters all those years ago. If I want to feel good about myself then I must give to others, plus I do not like regrets, life is to short and there is no reason to have them. So today one of the ways that I take care of my self and all my relationships is to send cards to people. Do I do it every time I think about it? – NO. Have I improved over the years? – YES.

Each time I send my husband, a loved one, a friend, a colleague, anyone at all a card I feel better about myself, I am honoring my value of follow through and being true to my word. It also makes me feel good that I am thinking about someone else. I want to make them feel good too.

I have learned over the years that when I stop thinking about me and start thinking about others it ALWAYS makes me feel better. I love how life works. Make it a point to do the little things that make all the difference, YOU are worth it!

Susan Birmingham 2009

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