How to Write a Thank You Note in 6 Easy Steps

Have you ever received a thank you note that made your day? We have, more than once. The writer’s kind and heartfelt words made us feel as if we’d we’d done something noble.

Your Handwriting is Unique
Your Handwriting is Unique

Let’s say your Grandma Hettie sends you a gift card to your favorite store. If she’s someone you hang out with all the time, you could just say thank you very much. But she’s not, and wouldn’t you like to make her feel noble?

You want to let her know

  • you received the gift. (Things can get lost in the mail.)
  • you recognize she spent time and money on you.
  • you don’t take gifts or people for granted.
  • you’re grateful she went out of her way for you.

How to Write a Thank You Note in 6 Easy Steps

1. If you’re going to send it by snail mail, buy a card and stamp. To save time, buy stationery (customized letterhead is a plus), a box of envelopes, and a sheet of Forever stamps to have on hand.

Note: A generation or two ago, well-mannered people sent handwritten thank you notes, and such notes stand out even more today. (How many handwritten letters do you receive in a month?) In the twenty-first century, however, it’s perfectly fine to email, instant message, or text your thanks, providing the giver uses the Internet.  (I love getting thank you texts!)

Your Texting is Unique
Your Texting is Unique

2. Write, Dear Grandma Hettie, Thank you very much for your generous gift. Mention what you plan to do with the money, such as purchasing the teapot or cordless screwdriver you’ve been eyeing.

3. To make it a fantastic note write something about her. Yes, her. Let her know she’s more than a name to you. For example: How was your trip to Italy? or, Hope your knee is better, or, I’ll never forget the time you taught me to crochet.

4. To make it even more fantastic, volunteer a detail about your life. For example, I have two job interviews next week, or, I got to go to that game we won on Saturday. She’ll love the insider news.

5. Close with your regards, such as Sincerely, With love, Wish you the best, Can’t wait to see you, or Thanks again, and sign your name.

6. Put the address and return address on the envelope, stamp it, and drop it in the mail box.

Let’s say your Uncle Elmer hands you some money and you said thanks right then and there. Is it appropriate to send a written thank you as well? Yes, because it gives him something tangible from you that will make him smile. He may want to save it.

Let’s say your friend Claire knits you a sweater that you hate because it’s ugly, not your color, etc. What can you say? In Step 2 above, write, Thank you for thinking of me. That’s it. No reason to lie.

Your Artwork is Unique
Your Artwork is Unique

Someone keeps your dog while you’re gone, hosts you for the weekend, loans you a car, or mows your lawn when you’re sick — all these acts of kindness merit more than a verbal response. If you don’t write thank you notes, it’s not too late to start. You’re bound to make someone’s day!

November 11, 2014
p.s. By the way, Pebblehoof, by Jason Black, is a great book!

2 thoughts on “How to Write a Thank You Note in 6 Easy Steps

  1. My Mom “forced” us kids to write thank you notes to grandparents and aunts/uncles for the Christmas gifts they mailed from several states away. In hindsight, I’m grateful she built the habit into our lives.
    To my utter astonishment, I’ve had several clients actually thank me for my handwritten thank-you-for-your-business notes! You know it has impact when they thank you for your thank you!

    1. I had the same habit forced on me, too, Diane, but it took some maturing for me to be grateful for the instruction, ha. Thanks for sharing your experience with clients!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s