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Transform your life by writing thank-you notes

While I aim to live each day with a spirit of thanksgiving, I love having a holiday to reflect on gratitude.

Expressions of gratitude reinforce the good I see in my life and remind me that the intangible gift of creative passion and the chance to make a difference with words are more important than any material object money can buy.

This Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for everyone who has inspired and fueled my writing passion: Parents who supported my aspirations from the very beginning; teachers who didn’t give up on me, including a second-grade teacher who helped me learn to read; and mentors who read my very bad first drafts and still saw the promise of something good.

Carolyn See, author of Making a Literary Life, writes about how we should pen “charming notes” to authors whose work has had an impact on us — a thank you for writing sentences that inspired and changed our lives.

Expressions of gratitude can have a healing effect. When 53-year-old attorney John Kralik found his life at an all-time low, he was struck by the idea that his life might become at least tolerable if, instead of focusing on what he lacked, he could find a way to be grateful for what he had. He began a mission to write a thank-you note to someone every day for a year. He wrote notes for gifts or kindnesses he’d received from loved ones and coworkers, from business associates, college friends, store clerks, and neighbors who had done him a good turn, large or small. Significant and surprising benefits came Kralik’s way, from financial gain to true friendship and inner peace. He went on to write a memoir, 365 Thank Yous: The Year a Simple Act of Daily Gratitude Changed My Life.

If you want to see how the power of being thankful can change your perspective and even alter the trajectory of your creative life, consider writing a note this Thanksgiving to thank a teacher, spouse, mentor, or another writer friend for how important they’ve been and how grateful you are for their love and support.

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Ruth #

    This is great. It is always good to let others know that we are thankful for them and why we are.
    I am thankful that you write this great blog.

    November 24, 2011
  2. Carly,
    I love this post – I make card and love to send them to people knowing that it is becoming more and more rare to receive cards at all.

    Saying thank you is always a great thing to do. Thank YOU for this post.


    December 26, 2011

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