5 Questions That Will Help You Write a Heartfelt Note

an illume's heartfelt note from Ali

The hardest part of writing a heartfelt note is finding the words to express yourself.

So often, the person or experience feels indescribable.

You might think: How could I possibly get it right?

But keep going. Research has found that we consistently underestimate the power of compliments – even though we need them to strengthen our relationships.

Here’s a better idea.

If you’re stuck expressing gratitude – read these inspiring notes from real-life illume users. We’ve paired them with 5 questions that will help you cross the finish line.

But heed our warning: these notes will melt your heart...

Be vulnerable

  • “In a past life, I would often equate feelings with weakness. You are such a phenomenal example of how wrong that is...We need more people like you. More who hurt openly, love completely, and know exactly what the f*** they’re doing.”

  • Ask yourself: How did this person change me?

  • What would be different in my life without them?

  • Go deep. Be willing to express those feelings in your note.

Capture a shared memory

  • “I was happy to have lunch with you and Tim last weekend... I felt sorry not contacting you for so long because of my personal struggles but I wouldn't be where I am today without you!”

  • Ask yourself: Why am I writing this note?

  • What happened that motivates me to write?

  • Whether it was six years ago or yesterday, memories help us set the stage to share appreciation.

Don’t forget humor!

  • “The way you hold off puking in Lyfts...amazing. <3”

  • “Boy, you’ve got the world ahead of you. Keep being sassy. A bit curmudgeonly too. And damn, you can dance!”

  • Ask yourself: What about this person leaves me 😂?

  • Not everything has to be serious! Celebrate this person for their goofiest, most adorable moments.

Add a gorgeous metaphor

  • “You are a blast of sunshine on my cloudy sky... a pinch of oregano in my overnight pizza... a handful of raisins in my plain oatmeal. You are a blessing to me every day!”

  • Ask yourself: What does this person remind me of and why?

  • The majority of notes we see use images to describe the recipient. It could be a light in the dark, an ocean of calm, a comet shooting through the sky...

Be simple

  • “I’m sorry we’re on different coasts now, but you’re still my best friend.”

  • “I'm so glad I met you.”

  • Ask yourself: What do I need to say?

  • Return to the root of your gratitude. Sometimes, the most powerful messages are that simple.

Maybe Father’s Day is coming up or your friend has been feeling under the weather.

illume makes it easy for individuals to pool notes, photos, and even funds together to make someone’s day brighter. Next time you want to share gratitude, let illume help you express it straight from the heart.