Geeks Vs Loneliness: the value of greetings cards

Why giving someone a card can make their day...

Hello and welcome to Geeks Vs Loneliness, our spot on the site where we talk about things that may be affecting you, or people that you know. The basic rules here: not every article helps every person, but hopefully over the course of the series, you’ll find something that’s of use to you. Hope so.

This week: just a simple chat about greetings cards. They’re often maligned things, and with good reason too. The card industry is increasingly a cynical way of asking you to part with four or five quid for what’s basically a bit of cardboard with a barely passable gag on the cover.

But cards – and letters – have their purpose. In particular, the unexpected card, the unexpected kindness. I’ve had personal experience this year of what it’s like to receive a card after a bereavement. In truth, I’ve not been the best sympathy-card sender, but then I’ve seen what they can do. I’ve seen what a few scrawled lines inside an otherwise homogenous card can do to enhance a person’s day.

It doesn’t have to be sad reasons, either. A card or note just saying thank you for someone who made an extra effort. A little written acknowledgement that someone is a good friend, or that they’re doing a good job. Just something that breaks the cycle of everyday normality, and offers someone a little glimmer of unexpected kindness, a fresh sliver of humanity. It can make someone’s day.

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I confess I’m still torn on mass production Christmas cards, where writing out lots and lots becomes far more impersonal than it’s actually meant to be. But I do think small acts of kindness are really worth cherishing, and taking the time to send someone a card very much falls into that category.

This hasn’t been the longest Geeks Vs Loneliness piece you’ll ever read, but hopefully it’ll inspire a few more nice words to be exchanged. And for those going through tough times, a huge hug to you from the other side of this internet screen.

You all stay brilliant, thank you for reading.