In the Digital Age, information moves at a rapid pace. A person can share their thoughts and feelings with dozens or even millions of people with just the click of a button. Now, as we move away from handwriting and spend more time with digital devices like computers and smartphones, our relationship to writing seems to change.
Typing doesn’t take as much time as writing something by hand, which can be an asset in today’s fast-paced world, but it also means we’re not spending as much time crafting our words for other people. Without a ballpoint pen, we may rush through a sentence or simply have less of a connection to things we write.
From personal relationships to remembering important information, here are five reasons to keep handwriting alive in the Digital Age.
A Personal Touch
Like a fingerprint, a person’s handwriting is unique. No two people write in the same exact style, regardless of whether they have the best pens. Some loops may be narrow or wide, while others may put a lot of space between their letters or words. This isn’t true of texting or typing where every letter looks the same, regardless of who’s doing the typing.
When we receive a handwritten letter or message from someone we know, we will instantly recognize the person who wrote it. This adds a personal touch to the writing. Each letter and mark on the page reminds us of the person who sent the message in the first place. Receiving a handwritten note or letter also shows us that this person took their time with their message, carefully adding each letter to the page.
Learning About the Writer
If we receive a handwritten letter from someone we’ve never met, we can quickly learn about who they are based on their writing style. Small letters suggest the person is shy, sensitive, and reserved. Larger letters suggest the person is used to being the center of attention or a social butterfly, seeking out the company of others wherever they go.
Without handwriting, we lose access to this information. A text message or email looks the same regardless of the sender, so we won’t know anything about this person other than what they decided to include in their message. Without handwriting, this person will remain a mystery until we meet them in real life.
Turning Letters into Keepsakes
Letters and messages can be so much more than the words they contain. If we receive a letter from a loved one or someone we haven’t seen or heard from in a while, their message might take on a whole new meaning. If we receive a handwritten letter from this person, we can keep it for months or years to come as a reminder of their love. We might also hold on to a handwritten letter if it marks an important moment in our lives, such as an accomplishment or personal milestone.
Without handwritten letters and notes, the writing doesn’t bear the same emotional significance. While we can take a screenshot of a text or email, we can’t physically hold the letter. It will only exist on a hard drive.
Engaging the Mind for Efficient Learning
Studies show writing things out by hand can help us better retain the information at hand. Writing out with a ballpoint pen information about history, literature, and even personal matters can strengthen our relationship to this material, helping us remember it for years to come. This is an effective learning exercise in school, giving children the chance to retain information they may need to recall later on. When we write out information by hand, we spend more time going over each word, which bolsters our ability to remember.
Solidifying Personal Relationships
Exchanging handwritten notes also helps strengthen our relationships to other people. Some of the world’s largest companies have even started having their employees write personal notes to clients as a way of building better rapport. Loved ones can maintain or even strengthen their bonds with one another by writing out messages of love and devotion by hand. The personal nature of a handwritten note is a powerful way to show someone how much you love and appreciate them.
Handwriting Is a More Personal Form of Communication
In the Digital Age, handwriting might be less common, but that doesn’t mean it needs to go the way of the dinosaur. Find ways to incorporate handwriting into your personal and professional relationships, and you’ll notice a difference right away. Keep handwriting alive, and you just might receive a handwritten letter in return.