Express Gratitude

Original Crown Mill Classic Laid Mini Gift Card Set
Expressing gratitude is a company value we take seriously around the GPC office. There’s tremendous significance in saying thank you to someone face-to-face (in fact we do this weekly at our company meeting!), but often it’s worth the extra time and effort to put pen to paper to say thank you in writing. The late William Arthur Ward said, “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” Expressing
gratitude is both needed and powerful. It not only connects us to those we know well, but also to the stranger who gives directions or holds the door. 

So, why write a thank you note? Because writing it down is helpful. I’ve found that when I sit down to write, my mind slows down for me to think about the person, our relationship and the item/gift that I’m thankful for. It also gives the recipient something to hold on to. In our culture today, text messages and emails are often here and gone so quickly. But a handwritten letter is an encouragement and gift that the recipient can return to often. I’ve held on to thank you notes for many years that were written by former bosses, family members and friends. And if you need another reason to write a thank you note, remember it’s an opportunity to use your favorite fountain pen and ink!

When I was younger, my parents would give me the sentences to include in my thank you notes to family. It really wasn’t until my high school graduation that I had to come up with my own thoughts when writing thank you notes. My advice? Be genuine. Share something you appreciate not just about the gift, but about the person who gave it to you.

Here are some situations you may find yourself in and a few tips to help you say thank you…

1. Someone has given you a birthday, graduation or wedding gift:

  • Thank them for thinking of you or for coming to your party.
  • Let them know how you plan to use their gift.
  • Remind them what your relationship means to you. These sentences are often the most meaningful!  

2. Someone has helped you move, pack or watched your pets while you were away:
  • Thank them for their willingness to help.
  • Let them know that you realize their time is valuable. Share what it meant to you that they chose to spend it helping you.  
  • Tell them you’d return the favor whenever needed!  

3. Someone has extended their friendship to you in time of need, or you’re just feeling extra thankful for them at this particular moment: 
  • Thank them for their willingness to listen. 
  • Tell them what it means to have a friend you trust deeply.
  • Let them know that you are there for them as well.

Are you in the habit of writing thank you notes? Let me know in the comments below. 

Now it just wouldn’t be right if I didn’t thank you for reading…

Write on, 

2017-10-11T04:05:26+00:00 June 23rd, 2015|A Goulet Life|19 Comments
  • William Eagleburger

    And I thank you for writing this wonderful article! My memory is fading with time, but I'm pretty sure my Mom was a huge influence on me to always thank people for what they did for me, in word and with thank you notes. I'm glad she did. As I've gotten older, I have learned to appreciate all the family and friends that are in my life. I am extremely close to my church family and a big emphasis in our church (bfrom pastors and teachers)is to foster an attitude of gratitude and a culture of gratitude. So thanks again for this article, Margaret. I will be sharing this. Bill


    Great ideas, Margaret! So few take the time to thank those who do something special. It is a great feeling to write and/or receive an handwritten note of thanks. I trust that you have inspired others to do it more often. Thank you for everything that you do!

  • tadaahhh

    which pen is that in the first photo? i love the girth!

  • William Eagleburger

    Hope I'm not jumping the gun, but I think it's a Pilot/Namiki Falcon.

  • Jared

    Just like William, my Mom made sure my generation wrote thank-yous. I don't see it as much anymore in this time of faster pace and less reflection. But just as I have recently returned to using fountain pens, perhaps the practice of thank-you notes will also revive. Thank-you, Margaret, for this article.

  • Madigan
  • Madigan

    Hi William! It's an attitude we try to foster here at Goulet, too. I'm so glad you enjoyed the read. 🙂

  • Madigan

    Hi Kevin! I couldn't agree more. Margaret did a great job. 🙂

  • Madigan

    You are correct! 🙂

  • Madigan

    Hi Jared! I hope you are having so much fun rediscovering fountain pens! Thank you notes are a great way to start writing again. 🙂

  • Tom Johnson

    Like so many others, sending thank you cards or letters was always expected of us growing up. And nothing says it better than a handwritten card, note, or letter. Thank you Margaret for this well done primer (?), reminder, article. I need to check our cards to see if we need to restock. It seems like, in recent years, writing thank you or sympathy notes has fallen by the way side (or been pushed into the ditch by the fast digital life. Not good at all. This is an appreciated article, well done,

  • Aissatou Sunjata

    I always write thank you cards/notes. Always. Anytime anyone does anything for me, I write them a thank you card/note. Also, recently, I have become enamored with wax seals. So now, when I write thank you cards/notes, I take the time to also use one of my flexible waxes by J. Herbin and put a wax image on the back of the envelope. This adds a special touch and people know that along with the gratitude of the card/note, taking the extra time to imprint the wax seal makes them feel even more special. For me, I enjoy using my fountain pens, bottled ink, thank you cards/notes, wax seals to express to someone how thankful I am for whatever they do. It also reinforces one of my beliefs, which seems to be lost. People don' t have to do anything for you so when they do, be thankful; show them your gratitude.

  • brewergnome

    I never used to. I was always "that guy." By the time I'd think of it, I wouldn't have "enough" to put on the paper.

    I've found that having a pen I want to use, with nice ink, and nice stationary, makes me A) think of it sooner and B) feel less caught up in having "enough" writing. They'll appreciate the cool color, and the nice handwriting, so what if I can't come up with more? And with a nice ink and a pen with a little flex, or a stub, I can fill half a card with a quote that I think they'd like and it's art instead of wasting space.
    In short, thank you, for helping me thank far more of my friends and family with your wonderful supplies!


    I thought so as well. Writing thank you notes can be a lost art but fountain pens are bringing them back in style! Thanks for the reply!!

  • Bob

    I have done it for several years and find that shopping for thank you cards and other stationery is about as much fun as the pens. Finding that perfect writing surface with cool thick envelopes.

  • Christine

    My parents tried to do thank you cards with us, but it was never a big thing. As I've gotten older I've been sending more and more of them, for a greater variety of things. I've been writing more and more letters too. And I think I've been influencing my family to write more letters and thank you cards too. It makes me happy to be sharing my love of all things paper. (A collection of pens and ink was always the next logical step. I should drop the person who pointed me at this web site a note and tell her thanks.)

  • Otter

    I, too, was one of those kids that never developed the good habit of writing thank you notes. Once the computer became common it became much easier to send notes. But now I am going back to handwriting them, just for the opportunity to use my fountain pens, beautiful inks, cool paper, and elegant wax seals. So this post is a great resource and timely reminder! 🙂

  • Robert Page

    Judith Martin wrote something memorable about the composition of thank you notes. She advised never starting a thank you note with the words 'thank you.' This forces you to think about your relationship with the person and focus on the real reason for writing the note, which is expressing gratitude about the thoughtfulness of the giver and strengthening your relationship.

  • Jared

    Tough to argue with Miss Manners! 😉