The Art of Appreciation Letters

ImageThank you. I admire you. I appreciate you. These are such simple words to say, but few of us take time to say them. You and I have each been in that place where we needed a word of encouragement. Do you remember how it felt? Hopeless, fearful, and lonely. But someone was brave enough, someone loved you enough to speak life and courage into you when you most needed it.

I have several examples of times I needed to hear some encouragement.

Anytime I’ve had to make a huge decision, my wife has been there to believe in me more than I believed in myself. 

Once, during a very stressful time of work, I left the office early in the morning to go handle bus duty. When I returned, my 8-year-old son had used my label maker to print a note that said, “I love you have a nice day”. It reminded me that I didn’t need to impress him. Someone (my son) loved me for who I already was.

During Valentines Day, I received several small gifts and cards from students and teachers. Two brightened my day the most. One was from a staff member that said, “You are a true blessing to our school. Thank you for all you do.”. Another from a tiny Kindergarten girl really made me smile. It had Barbie on it and said, “You’re a princess in progress”. I wasn’t sure how to take that one!

Finally, a staff member sent me an email today that was extremely encouraging. She said,

“Thanks for your help and for the endless hours you put in to make things run as smoothly as they can.  As my son calmly said to me a short while ago while I was pulled aside at a gas station, “Let’s take this thing one battle at a time!”  It’s when people I influence say calming and encouraging things like that, I am reminded I must be doing something right.  You have done many good things for our school in the short time you have been here.  Thank you for leading us.”.

Question: Who do you need to encourage today?

Two minutes can change their entire day. Please comment below and let us know some of the most encouraging things you’ve heard lately.


About Chris Stevens

I'm an Elementary Principal, husband, father of three, and an imperfect follower of Christ. I have eight years experience at the Jr-Sr High level and 14 years experience speaking at various churches.
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27 Responses to The Art of Appreciation Letters

  1. I really like this post!!! I may re-blog for tomorrow’s “Morning Story and Dilbert”…. Take Care and God Bless 🙂 Kenny T

  2. Moon says:

    same here 🙂 I’m gonna write a note for my mom. Thanks for sharing 🙂 May I also reblog this? 🙂 Thanks. Blessings!

  3. Patty O says:

    What a wonderful reminder! Thank you! I’ll be sure to pass on some appreciation and encouragement tomorrow! Have a good night!

  4. Moon says:

    Reblogged this on Wander Writer and commented:
    It’s always a good thing to show some APPRECIATION 🙂

  5. kiwiskan says:

    Keep up that good witnessing. Letters are MUCH better than commercial cards

  6. pdjhudonblog says:

    I will put it on Facebook, because I do not know how to put it on my BLOG and give you credit.
    I am not sorry that I was born before computers, but being 71 I use them in the best way I know how, I will put this on face book I think it worthy of that. Thank you very much for all that you do.
    I know that you are part of me and I know that I am part of you, and I love that part of me in you, and I know that you love that part of me in you.

  7. So true! To encourage people is so important but we don’t do it often enough! Thanks for the reminder!

  8. seeker says:

    Principals have such a daunting task in running a school. Kudos to you and thank you for taking care of the children.

  9. Eileen says:

    Yes! Incredibly simple, so important, yet so easy to forget. Thanks for challenging us to remember.

  10. Luann says:

    Thank you for the post. Appreciating and encouraging others has a two-fold purpose. Not only does it help to bolster their positive actions, but it also helps to cement our own determinations.

  11. bernasvibe says:

    **Simply LOVE this message! And more importantly this is something I believe in and live out loud..There aren’t many days that go by that I don’t share words of encouragement with someone/anyone!/loved ones/coworkers..It is something that just flows naturally from me. Just two days ago I told a coworker how much I appreciated all of the things she has done to assist me. Her response surprised me…She emailed me back and said”Thank you for that is something I don’t hear around here” WOW..she does so much for people I was shocked to hear that. So, that is proof positive we shouldn’t assume people “know” how much we appreciate them…If you feel IT, Share IT. Stay uplifted & blessed ya’ll

  12. Delana says:

    Wonderful! Yes, we need to be about encouraging one another. “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” Hebrews 3:13 NIV

  13. Delana says:

    Reblogged this on Delana's World and commented:
    This is a wonderful article on showing appreciation to and encouraging others. When I read it, I was instantly reminded of Hebrews 3:13 (NIV)–“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”

  14. mej1027 says:

    Thank you Sir! God Bless your heart.. 🙂

  15. Letters of “thanks” and encouragement are a vital part of the care packages we send to deployed troops, wounded warriors and military veterans. Thank you for reminding all of us of the importance to take time out to express our appreciation to one another…

  16. warmsunshine says:

    Absolutely positively love this! Have posted it on my Facebook page and if I can figure out how to re-blog, I will. Thanks for being a shining light in our broken world! I plan to follow your blog–thanks for liking mine, too! By the way, check out the “Happsters” on Facebook–their motto: “Like Hipsters–only happier!” (Cute, huh?) They give out happy notes everywhere they go and will send you your own supply free of charge. 🙂

  17. Pingback: The Art of Appreciation Letters « warmsunshineblog

  18. Rene Yoshi says:

    The most encouraging thing to me in your post was the evidence of the good, Godly example you are setting for your son. Thank you so much!

  19. Lyn says:

    My son-in-law is a former police officer, is 6’ 4” tall, and looks tough and mean. He’s now a grade school teacher and has been amazingly encouraged by the parents of his current students (3rd grade). They have put in written requests to the principal for their younger children to be in his class when they reach 3rd grade too.

  20. teresapoetry says:

    GREAT message!! Thank you for sharing this and God Bless You : )

  21. Pingback: Encouraging | Hopeful

  22. Pingback: The Art of Appreciation Letters « muffins&mocha

  23. I love this and reblogged! It truly can change somones day to be told they are appreciated!

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