Everyday inspiration: Write someone a physical note

Jun 27, 2014 at 12:00 a.m. ET

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but there's something to be said for the value of the written word itself. We asked four women to put pen to paper and write someone a handwritten note.

Challenge: write someone a physical note

Why? The next time you want to send a heartfelt sentiment, step away from the electronic device and dig out your note cards or stationery instead. Your effort will be appreciated, and your note will stand out much more than an email ever would.

Victoria note | Sheknows.com

Victoria: My friend, Chantel, is coming to visit me this weekend from Washington, D.C. I love a good girls' weekend, so I planned a few things to do. And what better way to keep track of it all and add a personal touch than with a handwritten note? Now she'll have the full rundown of the plans.

Jenny note | Sheknows.com

Jenny: I desperately miss my son during the school day. This week I decided to show him just how much by sticking a few napkin notes in his lunch bag. The notes were simple and maybe a little corny: "I love you to pieces," or "Have a great day, xoxo." However, I received lots of extra hugs and kisses after school so I know the notes made his day. The power of the handwritten word is easily overshadowed by technology. From now on I'm going to depend on my phone a little less and write a little more.

Chaton note | Sheknows.com

Chaton: Because of my commitment to preserving the art of the handwritten note I was excited to see my last challenge. This is a challenge I was born to perform because I live it every day.

In this age of electronic communication, many dismiss the value of a handwritten note. I'm not one of them. Perhaps it's my age, my love of the elegant or my passion for etiquette, but I have never believed that an email is a replacement for the real thing. I am part of a dying breed. I invest in stationery. I write notes. And, I mail them. Call me crazy.

I have been in note-writing mode since I returned from the hospital eight weeks ago when I had my son. I have been so blessed by the generosity of family and friends. Because of them, my son had clothes, diapers and wipes when he returned from the hospital. He came two weeks early and we had nothing. So, without our family and friends we would not have been prepared.

Writing notes by hand is an effort, to be sure. You have to have the stationery, write neatly and address them. The hardest part for me is writing neatly. I have terrible handwriting. Since Wite-Out is in short supply, I have cross-outs in my notes, my handwriting tends to slope downward and the notes are a little messy. That being said, I enjoy writing them and believe that people enjoy receiving them. Who knows, I may just start my revolution after all.

Roaen: When I was younger, I used to be better at writing notes. I loved stringing words together to convey my thoughts and passing them across the classroom to my friends. This was middle school. Today, I struggle with even writing a small five-sentence thank-you note. Why is it that as we get older, it's OK to let things go unsaid? I decided to again be better at that. I wrote a note to my almost 6-year-old and put it in his backpack with his snack: "Have a great day. Try not to get any time-outs, but if you do, I still love you. — Love, Mommy." It's a start.

Our Everyday Inspiration series wants to inspire you with small ways to improve your life. We've asked 20 women to take on a variety of small challenges and share their results. See all of our Everyday Inspiration challenges here, and meet the women here.