I absolutely love mail! When something arrives with my name written on it, I get so excited to open it and see handwritten words from an old friend. There is something so special about it, it's hard to describe. Knowing how much I love it, I can only imagine how it feels for others, especially when it is unexpected.
I have recently started writing letters to friends and teammates as a gesture of encouragement. Though doing good deeds shouldn't be done for others to see, it is nice to know that your kindness isn't going unnoticed. When someone recognizes the light you are in the world, it is so encouraging and motivating to keep being the person God created you to be and striving to be a better version of yourself.
Being aware of the power handwritten letters have on a person is my motivation to keep writing encouraging letters to those around me. Words can resonate with some people, but letters have a way of penetrating through our walls and hit the heart head on. Someone has taken the time to write what a good job you're doing or that you're on their mind has such a unique power to uplift, not just the person receiving the letter, but also the person writing it. Writing a happy letter to someone sheds light on the things that you are thankful for which has a positive effect on you as the writer.
In "Gratitude Diaries," Janice Kaplan writes the power gratitude has on our lives. She suggested writing down three things that you are grateful for every day. When our mindset shifts from what we want and don't have to realize what we do have and being thankful for it all, we become much happier. I apply this concept when writing letters to friends. Spending a few minutes to express my gratitude to them and their talents, in turn, makes me happier because I acknowledge the goodness they are in my life.
I encourage you all to take ten minutes out of your day to write a letter to someone in your life. It doesn't have to be a long essay on fancy paper; a few sentences on a piece of notebook paper can have the same effect. List a few things you appreciate about them and mail that sucker! I promise you their day will be infinitely better knowing that someone cares and appreciates them. It may just be the thing they need to keep going in a hard time.