It’s 9 am, I’m rushing out the door, and the mail has just arrived. The small bundle consists of bank statements, paper advertisements, and maybe a magazine I’ve subscribed to. It’s all pretty nondescript and painfully boring. But then, on an otherwise grey and miserable day, I notice a letter or postcard snuggled in the pile. There’s the familiar handwriting and colored ink. It’s a touch of humanity amongst the rest of the generic typeface. It brightens my day.
Regardless of who it’s from, or what other mail you get, it’s always heartwarming to receive a card in the mail. Think about the last time you got one — didn’t that bring you joy? Here are 4 reasons why you should write and send snail mail:
1. It’s a connection.
Sending mail is a real human contact from me to you. It’s a reminder that we are not alone. When so much of the mail we receive is automated or comes from an anonymous person, there’s something wonderfully human about receiving something as simple as a postcard. It can really make someone’s day. An exotic stamp, recognizable handwriting, and a heartfelt letter are comforting and can do wonders for our mood.
2. It’s time.
Someone has taken the time to write, and that means a lot. We live in an instant world. So much of what we do is about quick results and immediate visibility. Yet, there’s something much more meaningful about slowing that down. Sending a postcard or a letter might take longer to reach the recipient. Yet, the fact that you thought about them and that you took the time to write to them, will not go unnoticed. It tells them that you’re thinking of them, they matter, and they’re worth your time.
3. It’s personal.
It is easy to see what people are doing in their “best” lives. Instagram captures holiday snaps, and Facebook keeps us up to date with one another’s “big life moments.” But this is all very…shiny. It’s the highlights. It’s the surface level overview of someone’s life. There’s something much more intimate about a letter – emotions, day to day life details, a sense of individuality – that is less apparent through a screen. And, it’s specifically for the recipient. Someone has sat down and written something for you — not hundreds of followers — to read.
4. It’s tangible.
A letter can be kept and read again at any time. A postcard can be pinned to the fridge. Writing something funny or meaningful, or something that chronicles a point in time, can be incredibly meaningful as a momento. It is a hug through the letterbox. It’s real, and not driven by “likes,” or “shares.” It’s something to re-read months or even years later, that’ll give the recipient a smile all over again.
Life is hectic, and sometimes it can be difficult to find the time to sit down and write a letter. Sending a text is much quicker, and will reach the person much faster. However, investing time to mail something physical every now and again can be cathartic, for both the sender and receiver. It’s a fantastic way to keep in touch with the people you love — even if they’re only a few miles away.
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash