The challenge: 7 ‘Thank You’ cards, 7 days, $3.43 in postage stamps
Holidays incur a slew of emotions that make people reflect on memories such as lost loved ones, holiday dinners, presents, religious beliefs, relaxation, and much more. For the majority of people in the world, holidays give us the ability to connect with family and friends in a relaxing manner (maybe not so relaxing for some family dynamics) while thinking about what our families and friends mean on an individual level. For many, 10-12 months of the year are powered by money and the race to advance their career. The persons with the highest ambitions will advance to the top, usually with the neglect of a few holidays and vacations that will resurface during a 40-60 year old midlife crisis of regret or lifestyle change. At that stage of your life, many friends and family may have parted ways either physically and/or spiritually. Take a miniscule amount of time to say ‘Thank You’ to those people now. This helps create the balance that many want/need.
With Thanksgiving 2015 being over and Christmas 2015 right around the corner, I challenge you to step outside of your comfort zone just a bit. Genuine, personal connection with family members and friends can mean the world to your grandma that you haven’t reached out to in a few weeks, that classmate who you haven’t given five minutes of attention to since graduation, or the Aunt/Uncle that moved across the globe and could use some meaningful words of encouragement. Take 20 minutes out of the day for at least 7 of the next 26 days of the year to sit down and write a short card/letter to the role models in your life. That family member that could use some appreciation although they never ask for it. That sarcastic uncle who, although you know they’ll give you a ton of shit for acting soft and sending a written letter to his house while you see him during the holidays, will put that card on his fireplace mantle for nobody else to see. All because they appreciate the thought and admiration of being a role model.
This time not only gives you the ability to slow down a bit and show appreciation for people you truly love and admire, but it gives you a chance to reflect on what you truly care about in life. You may start writing your first ‘Thank You’ card and think “Hmm. I really love my money.” Hell, write a letter to your money then. Whatever makes you happy. Take the time to revisit your values, ambitions in life, and the people who have helped you get to where you currently are. The word “self-made” is inaccurate and most likely made up by some narcissistic douche like Martin Shkreli. So don’t forget your past while you advance towards your future.
Ordering ‘Thank You’ or ‘Appreciation’ cards: Take the time to search Amazon for something that fits your personality. Here are a few options of Thank You cards, Appreciation cards, or Holiday cards. With Amazon Prime, these can be to you by Monday/Tuesday (If you don’t have Amazon Prime by now, you either lack a materialistic side, or you’re doing your shopping all wrong). At the latest, end of the week upcoming.
Buying Stamps: Here is a list of everywhere that you can buy stamps. Go out this weekend or during the week, on your way to/from work or while running regular errands, and pick up as many as you need.
Creativity: I can’t help you with that one. Have a few holiday beers and write with some holiday cheer, writing on how you wish your family was here. With a pen, a card, and a single ounce of thought, these cards will be the best present that person received and never bought.