My recent experience with the joy of letters
In an age of texting, Snapchat, DMs, FaceTime and maybe some face-to-face communication, one overlooked alternative to carrier pigeon is writing letters. While it may be a dying form of communication, I still think it is an enjoyable way to connect with others.
The joy of receiving
For the past two months, I have been trying to write more handwritten letters. By that, I mean that I have sent three and written one without sending it. That aside, I have really enjoyed the letters I did send! Over winter break, I signed up for a letter exchange on a Facebook group. Of the three I sent through this, I have gotten one response, and it made my day so much better. Personal letters do not have the need for a rush and can be a good break in the often overly quick responses we currently deal with.
The joy of writing
Beyond the joy it is to get a letter back, it can also be really fun to write letters. If you want to receive a letter, you usually have to write one. There is a lot of creativity you can have in making your letter, and it gives you a chance to write something other than notes. It is good to break up the consistency of what you do sometimes, and as I write a lot of notes, it feels good to write for fun. It is almost like reading a good book after having to read books for school for months (which is not really something I have to do but seems like a good comparison). If you have bad handwriting, you could always type it. However, it can also a good way to practice your writing.
To whom can I send a letter?
In order to find a recipient for your letter, there are a couple of things you can do. First, as I did, you can find letter exchange groups, whether that be on Facebook or elsewhere. Of course, with anything on the internet, proceed with caution when giving out personal information. Second, send a letter to a distant friend. College often separates relationships, and writing a letter is an intentional way to show you still care. A third recipient is a family member. This could range anywhere from a sibling to cousin to a grandparent. A letter does not have to be sappy, and from my experience, they are generally well-received.
The joy of a break
Writing letters can be a swell form of communication that can oftentimes be forgotten. It is a good way to keep in touch with distant friends and family, and can also be a unique opportunity to connect with an older generation who maybe does not receive as many letters. I have thoroughly enjoyed the respite writing letters has brought, and I think everyone could benefit from slowing down a little bit.