The nice yet empty, “Thank You” response that we use so easily in emails, texts, and social media is not what I’m referring to. I’m talking about the moment makers; the sweet, thought out, and inspiring thank you note that makes you stop and want to genuinely thank the person back for making your day.
We’ve come to the time in our world that quick communication and responses are almost a necessity. There is so much hustle and bustle around us that we are constantly trying to keep up with, and it makes special things like quality thank you notes a lost art. It doesn’t happen on purpose, but just gets “lost in the mix.” It doesn’t have to though and here is my three-part formula to help write the thank you note that will make the recipient want to thank YOU.
I call the method the “You-Me-You” approach and it goes like this:
ME – Explain how their action, words, or gift affected you and how it made you feel. Then explain the difference it made in your life (i.e. what memory it will create.)
YOU- find something special that is specific to the person you’re thanking that isn’t necessarily related to the gift they gave you.
Practice this. Let’s say Andrea took Kate to dinner for her birthday, and also gave her a cute bracelet in acknowledgment of the special day.
Kate could use the You-Me-You method in this way:
Thank you for taking time to take me to dinner for my birthday. I really enjoyed spending time with you at a favorite restaurant, and the cute bracelet was a nice surprise. When I wear it, I will fondly think of you and our friendship, and how much we laughed!
I am grateful for you. You may not be aware of this, but your cheerful spirit uplifts me and I frequently gain wisdom from our discussions. I am blessed to have you as part of my life.
Another tip: be careful in using superlative or trite words in a note. This can come across as over-flattering, insincere or cliche. Kate could have added words such as “always uplifts me” or “phenomenal necklace” but it might have sounded forced. Just be truthful and genuine without overdoing it.
Notice the difference between the note above and this note below:
Thanks for taking me to lunch and giving me a necklace for my birthday. I really appreciate it.
While any thank you is better than none, the first note is far more enriching compared to the second. Which would you rather receive from someone?
Tip: Don’t get caught up in the details for the message. These days email, text or phone messages can be a means of saying thank you, although a handwritten note is an unusual and special gesture. Whatever you choose, use the You-Me-You method and you are sure to bless the recipient almost as much as they blessed you!
Are you ready to start thanking someone today?