I think most people would agree that receiving a handwritten letter brings a smile. Years ago the Royal Mail in the UK had a advertising campaign with the slogan “I saw this and thought of you” to encourage people to use the postal service more. Sending a letter can be considered a random act of kindness.
Writing for wellbeing
Nobody wants to read lots of grumbles, so I try to keep my letters cheerful. Expressing gratitude is believed to help you experience more positive emotions, so including some things that I am grateful for is a good start for a letter.
I enjoy the whole creative process of writing a letter, from making my own writing paper, deciding what to write, gathering all my stationery together and maybe adding some extra hand made pieces to include in the envelope.
Depending on who you are writing to will depend on the subject you want to write about and the depth you want to go into. Therefore, think first about who you are writing to and what they might like to read about.
If you are writing to someone in another country you could describe where you live, favourite places to visit and include a photograph or a postcard. Try to avoid answering questions similar to security questions … Honestly I saw a questionnaire on Pinterest and it read like a hackers handbook! The answers to ‘Name your first pet/first car/primary school/street you grew up on’ are guarded secrets surely?
A close friend or relative may be interested in some personal news or a recollection of a shared memory.
Here are a few ideas about things you could write about to either someone you know well, or a new pen pal
- Your favourite hobby
- Some things you would like to achieve this month/this year
- The view from the window/describe where you are sitting to write your letter
- The last movie you saw/favourite box set (I’m a Netflix newbie and I have got so much to catch up on)
- Your most used method of transportation
- Would you rather …? As inspired by my tag from Geraldine
- Questions for your pen pal (this hints that you would like a reply as well as it being an exercise in getting to know each other)
See the related posts below for even more ideas:
I really hope that I have inspired some more people to join the revolution and if you have any great snail mail ideas, please do get in touch!