How To Write a Thank-you Note or Letter
by Gene Griessman, Ph.D.
This week I received a thank-you note from a 12-year-old boy named Spencer that could serve as a template for any message of appreciation.
Spencer wrote to thank me for taking him and my grandson Dylan to St. Croix. With that background, here’s Spencer’s note of thanks:
Dear Dr. Griessman,
Thank you for inviting me to the Caribbean with you It was very, very nice of you. I had such a good time with you and Dylan and my favorite part was when we went snorkeling.
I saw many different fish and I also saw a giant lobster. The second funest part to me was sitting down and looking at the beautiful ocean. The food was very, very, very good.
Also it was cool when we went on top of the mountain and could see a giant amount of the island.
I’m not sure if Spencer’s parents gave him any guidance, but if they did, it was good advice. Spencer’s note is a little gem.
Here are some tips to follow when writing messages of appreciation, whether you’re a parent teaching your kid, or if you’re writing one for yourself.
One. When you write a note or letter of thanks, be sure to mention specifics. Spencer mentioned three different things he liked.
Two. Be enthusiastic. Let your emotions show. Spencer showed how he felt by repeating the word “very.” I loved it when he said the food was “very, very, very good.” Repetition of the word “very” is easy to do, and can be powerful.
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Three. Say it your way. Your written messages need to sound like you. Spencer said snorkeling was “the second funest part to me.” He also used the word “cool” to describe our trip up the mountain.
Four. His message was hand-written on an expensive-looking card that had a beautiful photo of flowers on the front.
Just remember how much we like it when people notice what we do. Do you have any doubt that I will keep, and treasure, this note.
One footnote. In case you’re wondering where we stayed in the Caribbean that drew such praise from a 12-year old boy, it was the Buccaneer Resort in Fredericsted, St. Croix. American Virgin Islands.