Expressing Gratitude with a Personalized Note

These past two years have not been easy.  We are craving connection.  As we transitioned from working and socializing in person, to remaining socially distant and working from home, many feel isolated and alone.  To help us engage with our teams, friends and families we had to discover new ways to connect.

Technology has been a blessing.  And also a curse, with the continued ability to be always on.   Some of you know that I was in an accident where my right hand, arm and shoulder was injured, 3 years ago.  Being away from a formal work environment, before covid, I felt disconnected.  Part of my morning routine was to walk and take photos, using voice commands, as I was able.

Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates vision for tomorrow.  Melody Beattie

There were so many people that showed me incredible kindnesses with their time and help. I wanted to express my gratitude in a more authentic way and started turning my photos into cards.  Not only was this a great way to connect it was a way to share part of my world with them, even though we were apart, and a great writing exercise to help strengthen my hand.

As our world begins to open up, revisiting the ritual of the expressing thanks with a handwritten card, will help us connect.  For many generations sharing a handwritten card was how gratitude was expressed.

Common courtesy is the red carpet that opens the doors of life.  Julie Lynott-Haimes

During the first lock down, as I was feeling so disconnected from colleagues, family and friends I created a card, featuring the flowers in our garden.  It was my way of sharing the gifts of nature we were enjoying from our garden even though we could not be together.

As we begin to open up, the need to find those ways to connect with a handwritten note has never been more important.  It is through the writing of the card, pen to paper, we can share our gratitude for the difference someone makes in our lives.

  • This could be from a great connection with someone on a Zoom Call.
  •  A supplier you were hoping to do business with and unfortunately that is not within the scope of their business.
  • A simple thank you for someone sharing information on a role.
  • Letting someone know you are thinking of them.
  • Celebrating a milestone or celebrating a key deliverable on a project.
  • Drawing your name for a book they have written or by another well known author.
  • Sending a birthday or anniversary card.

The options are endless

Another piece of the pandemic is many not-for-profits have been negatively impacted by their ability to fundraise. For me I wanted to do something.

Recently I used this photo from my Mom’s garden and turned it into a card that was printed at our local printer.  All proceeds from this card, featuring love and friendship, will go to the Canadian Cancer Society, in support of Breast Cancer Research.

In what ways can you look for the opportunities to express gratitude to others?  Perhaps a handwritten card feels like one more thing.  Start with a personalized note, using your preferred form of technology.  The next person on your team who reaches a milestone, send a handwritten note.  This is a beautiful opportunity to let people know we seen them, we care, and invest in a relationship.

Look for those beautiful moments to build connection.  This will nourish your soul and your wellbeing.

Be kind.

Be patient.

Be nourished in all you do.

Sharon K. Summerfield

At The Nourished Executive we coach business professionals and share strategies to invest in wellbeing, manage stress and prevent burnout. Our founder, Sharon K. Summerfield, is a holistic nutritionist and certified breath coach, with an extensive business background.  We have a strong commitment to giving back, investing in local community creating space for all students to consider careers in construction, science, technology, engineering and math. 



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