10 things I’ve learned (as a chronic card-procrastinator) from a daily card-writing practice

I have always been a reluctant card-sender. Logically, I know that they are one of the best things I can do to emotionally process my life and to show up in support for the people I love. However, I hadn’t figured out a system that worked for me.

Instead, I used the excuse that I was busy. Ironic, I know, since I own a card company. I would try to write a note while Ellie was in the bathtub. That was a good practice, but still, to keep up on all the notes I felt like I should be sending, it wasn’t enough.

At the beginning of the New Year, I realized that it’s the daily habits that add up over a long time. Having a spot in EACH DAY to prioritize the things that I want to get better at, the things that I value, such as daily health routines and doing the dishes in the morning, helps me stay on track.

For some reason, it’s easier for me to commit to doing something every day, rather than three times a week. When I know that I’ll be doing something every day, I don’t let it build up into a pile that seems insurmountable.

I think I always built up writing a card so much, that in my head, I didn’t have time for it.

After about 10 days of actually writing a card a day, I noticed that it really didn’t even take as much time as I thought it might. Five minutes. A handful of sentences. And the relief that it’s been giving me — to not put off notes – feels amazing.

 Hopefully these will help you prevent card-writing procrastination, even if you don’t decide to write a card a day. 

Here are 10 things I’ve discovered since starting a daily card-writing practice.

1. I really like following up with an interaction by writing a card. If there is someone in my life who I hear is going through a tough time, that becomes the card I write that day.

2. It’s thrilling to take action so quickly after the interaction. Instead of putting off a card for “sometime... in the next week.. or so,” I know that there is a five-minute slot in my day to seize the day and spend some time writing some words that I need to meditate on and hopefully will resonate, comfort, and encourage the recipient.

3. The first week I would pop the card in the envelope, and address with just their first name. Then, at the end of the week, I went through the cards and took time to address the envelopes. Although I liked being able to read the cards back over before sending them, I have now switched my system slightly. I discovered that I can drop off the card in our nearby post-box as part of my workout, and then the cards can show up for the people sooner. Plus the act of finishing the card doesn’t pile up. It only took me a few days to get into this rhythm.

4. I have decided to save my Sunday as a day to write Ellie (my daughter) a card. I have a binder with pages that I am collecting the cards into. It’s satisfying to already be building a stash of cards for her. I imagine that when I’m gone someday, she’ll be able to look through the cards and hear her mama’s voice in my thoughts and words. I am constantly aware that I don’t know when my time is going to be up (since I’m a paraplegic, I probably think about this more than the average person). Seizing the opportunity each Sunday to invest my time into this project is highly cathartic for me.

These are the binders I got.
These are the inserts I’m using.

5. I’ve always been bad at sending Birthday Cards. But now when it’s someone’s birthday, I take 5 minutes to give the person I love some affirming words that can rattle around in their brain. I have been writing the card ON their birthday because I haven’t yet figured out a better way to do it ahead of time. But a late card is a way to extend the celebration, and it’s better than just a text message.

6. The Ultimate Stash has made it possible to do this project. So far, I’ve been able to find a good card from the set every day. It has been helping me realize that I need to design some less dramatic thank-you notes 😅, and some wordless cards would be really nice to have too. In the survey I took a few weeks ago, you all echoed these things as well, so I’ve been thinking about this a lot as I’m designing the cards for this year. (Our first collection will be coming out in April!)

7. Unlike Grace, I don’t tend to decorate the envelopes, besides using our sticker seals (which helps each envelope feel a little more polished). Perhaps I’ll try decorating some envelopes with Ellie… but so far, done is better than perfect, and I’m ok with that.

8. I’ve realized that storing addresses in my phone is the way to go for me, and I’m getting better at updating the address in my phone right away when I ask via text message for an address. This is nice for future Leah because it will help me save time, and avoid losing the address and having to ask for it again.

9. I’ve experimented a bit with when I write the card, but often it is the last thing I do before I get into bed. Some people journal before bed, I kind of like the habit of writing a card. Dr. Rangan Chatterjee in his book Feel Better in 5 (great book, btw!), talks about how having a gratitude practice at the end of the day can help you sleep better. Taking 5 minutes to write and meditate on someone in my life whom I’m grateful for is really a great way to give gratitude. Plus Kelsey is typically home and can watch Ellie while I sneak away for a few minutes.

10. I’ve skipped a couple of days, but I forgive myself because I am writing to SO many more people than I would have otherwise. Instead of simply thinking about doing this kind action, I am actually taking action.

And I have so far haven't had much trouble finding people to write to. Some people I aim to write to once a month. Some people it's their anniversary. Some people it's probably the only time I'll send them a card, but I know they are struggling and could use some encouragement and a nice piece of art to inspire them.

It's felt pretty organic so far, and there are people on my list who I need to get to still.

Why this is working for me:

I think positive actions like this will always have a bit of resistance. It’s easier and more seductive to just browse my phone for ten minutes, so having a system in place that helps me spend a few minutes of my time making sure that I don’t let the day slip through my fingers feels like there’s a lot of power in it.

I’m excited that it feels like this simple challenge is letting me redefine myself from “procrastinator” to someone who says, “let’s do it today.”

What works for you?

Have you ever done a card-a-day challenge? What works for you? I'd love to hear!

P.S. Something I’m really aware of is that everyone is different. I think the best thing to do is to figure out what works for YOU. 

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I’ve been making a family picture calendar for my extended family for years with everyone’s birthdays and anniversaries for over 20 years but it wasn’t until my mom died 2 years ago that I decided to write and mail a card for each event on the calendar. I added some friends dates to the calendar as well this year. And while it’s not a card every day there are about 70 opportunities to send a written note and it fills my heart with joy to continue a tradition that my mother loved 🥰


I loved this post and for many years I have had a greeting card practice like yours (not always one a day, but usually 3-4 a week at least) and love it for all the reasons you mentioned. I think of how good it feels to GET a piece of snail mail unexpectedly and love being able to brighten people’s days in that similar way. I think it can be fun to combine with a gratitude practice, too… a few years ago I decided to send one thank-you note a day and that was such a sweet practice.

Also, one of the sweetest parts for me of a new business I recently began is sending out a handwritten note with each order.

Cheers to snail mail and thanks for all the beautiful cards you guys create and share with the world!



Mindy Meiering

Thank you for sharing your process, it really helps to see part of the struggle as well as the solution (for you). Sometimes the internet feels like everyone is just shouting advice at each other and it never feels like they’re sharing the whole process, just solutions. And your emails help me not only with card writing but also with adding small daily tasks that I keep meaning to do but never do. I also sat down this morning and wrote out all the things I could do instead of getting on my phone (and it included card writing !) Thank you for existing and sharing your thoughts!


If you ever run out of people to write to you can always write to me. Promised I’ll send you a selfmadecard back, or one to Ellie if she might be the sender.
My address
Anja kieboom
8, rue des grands champs
38360 sassenage

Anja Kieboom

This tip might help you with birthday cards. When I put a birthday on my phone calendar, I set a reminder for a week before to prep the card. Then I write it and send it. That way they get it by their birthday. Just a thought. Thanks for these great tips.


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