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Here’s the deal: I’m not so good at expressing feelings to others in the moment. As such, I’ve put a lot of energy into perfecting my thank you note game. If you’re not writing personalized thank you notes yet, it’s time for you to grow up and get with it. There is no one who doesn’t appreciate a good thank you! Expressing gratitude to your friends and family will only have a positive impact on your relationships.
Now that we’ve established that you need to put pen to paper, how do you actually write the perfect thank you card? In my snail-mail-loving opinion, a well-written thank you note is composed of at least three sentences. No matter what the note is for, these three sentences follow a similar structure:
Thank you so much for the wonderful birthday gift!
Just a small note to say a huge thank you for the generous gift!
I wanted to drop a line to say thank you for the thoughtful gift.
Thank you so much for thinking of us!
The [object] you found for us fits perfectly in our new home!
Your gift of [object or money] was unnecessary, but very much appreciated; we can’t wait to [describe its use in a personal way OR generally explain where the money is going to].
We are so excited to use the [object] for [what you’ll use it for].
You really made my birthday extra-special with your generous gift of the [object or money].
Thank you again for helping us to get started in our married life together.
Thanks so much again for celebrating with me and for the lovely birthday gift.
Again, thank you for the generous gift!
BONUS Sentences: Add personal flair with an additional sentence about how the person or experience of receiving the gift was important to you. Mention that you’re looking forward to seeing them again soon or that you can’t wait for a future event. Examples include:
It was so great to see you and celebrate!
We are so lucky to have an amazing friend like you in our lives.
Looking forward to seeing you again at the holiday party!
BONUS Pro-tip: If you’re writing a large amount of thank you notes (like for a wedding or for a baby shower), it helps to write an outline. For our own wedding, I drafted different intros for family or for friends. I then came up with a standard line for financial gifts, but made sure to be specific for tangible gifts. Having some sentences outlined allowed me to be personal with “bonus” sentences for each note. I used this all as a rule of thumb to blast through 50+ thank you notes over the course of a couple of weeks.
That’s it! Writing thank you notes doesn’t have to be re-inventing the wheel. Plus, sending them is a special touch to let your friends and family know you care. Just be authentic and they’ll practically write themselves!