The year is 2023.
Technology is ruling like never before. Jobs are assisted (if not replaced) by AI technology, social media has become more than the norm, and our primary form of communication revolves around a pocket sized computer that sits in our palm. Concerns with climate change and deforestation are on the rise, and to combat them, paper books are being replaced by Kindles and e-readers while libraries and newpapers grow obsolete.
So, after all that, why do some people find Christmas cards to be relevant today?
Call me an old soul, but I count myself among the fans of traditional Christmas cards. Here's why:
Sending Snail Mail Can Boost Mental Health
Do you remember that instant rush you'd feel when you'd run to the mailbox, and open it to find a letter address specifically to you? From your aunt, bestie, or pen pal (remember those?). As a child, that feeling—of being seen, thought of, and spoken to in such a sincere way, meant something.
As an adult, the same is true.
Counselor Lauren Garvey at Cancer Wellness thinks so, too. “Writing is therapeutic because at the core of writing is self-expression. We know that being able to express how we feel and what we think impacts us on a cellular level. This is why writing has psychological, mental and physical health benefits.”
Need I say more?
It can live forever
Whether or not the letter or holiday card you send ends up in the trash, recycling, or in a box for the next hundred years, the fact that it exists, in real time and space, is a wonderful thing.
I love social media. I love popping on to see what my friends and family are up to, sharing a silly update about my life, and watching cat videos with my husband (especially, the cat videos). But there's a trade off that often happens.
We tend to take the connivence of digital, over the impact of tangible.
Touching the smooth edges of cardstock paper, pressed and made to hold ink with images of your very own life—that is irreplaceable.
That's the stuff that could end up in a museum one day, a way to mark time or tell a story of life now to some 4th grader in 3023. (Could you imagine if the hieroglyphs were boiled down to a text? Not exactly Smithsonian exhibit-level quality.)
Out of site, out of mind (and visa versa)
Similar to the point above, we live in a saturated digital age. It's no longer that our social media pages hold our pal's vacation photos and occasionally a story of their cute kiddo doing something irresistibly cute. Competing for our attention now are ads—for things we don't need—and faces—of people we don't know.
There are many frivolous things now begging for our attention.
And when we respond by giving in, the things we do care about, become back of mind.
If one of the primary points of the holiday season is to connect with our loved ones, then why not create a path for connection in every way we can?
Artifacts matter, recycled materials help
By now, you can probably tell I'm a huge fan of sending Holiday cards ;). But you should also know, not all cards are made the same.
While (very legitimate) climate change concerns are top of mind, it can feel overwhelming to consider how our shopping habbits and material selections affect this crisis. That's where Artifact Uprising comes in.
We genuinely LOOVEEEthis brand. We chose them time and time again for the highest quality gifts, trusting that they are doing their part in sustainability while providing priceless pieces. Amazingly, they use 100% post-consumer recycled paper in all their Holiday card products.
Okayyyyy, India but what's that mean?
If you're confused, here's Green Living on why that matters: "Paper made from 100% post-consumer waste is produced entirely from paper that comes directly out of your office or home recycling bin. Using post-consumer recycled paper helps eliminate the need for harvesting more virgin materials, and also creates a demand for the paper we recycle, thereby closing the recycling loop"
People care about you.
One of the biggest myths I think we buy into this time of year, is that people don’t care.
It’s easy to feel like we’re keeping up with our friends and family's lives on social media but honestly, most times I chat with other people in person, I find that everyone genuinely cares to hear about what’s happening in each other’s lives.
People want to hear about you, the real stuff.
Offering a way to send a card, extend a hand and say "I'm still here! I love you, and I miss you" can open a two-way street, inviting them to respond and everyone start to feel, a little less lonely.
I get it, it's a lot of work making, shipping & displaying cards this time of year. Heck, if it's not on the agenda for you, no judgement here!
But if you're looking for my take, I vote tangible letters that provides joy, connection, and a human touch point, are worth more than you know.
And while, of course, it would be easier to scroll down an endless feed loop to see my friend's Christmas photos, I'd much rather have their faces smiling back (in person) but if I must forfeit, then at least smiling back at me on my refrigerator.
If you're still on the fence about sending a Christmas card, I have just a little something to help! You can use my code INDIAJADE15 at Artifact Uprising to take 15% off your entire order.