A Running List of Old Things That Need to Become New Again

1. Printed photos

Today I pinned photos to my wall, and I wasn’t even using Facebook.

It turns out that Kodak still provides digital photo printing services at CVS locations. Just connect your phone and print whatever photos you want.

It’s magical. I get all the benefits of storing my photos in the cloud and taking great shots with my phone. But I also get to hold my photos in my hand. I get to use them to decorate my home. And I can use them as gifts and tokens of memory for friends. As simple as it seems, just having the physical copy makes these scenes more special.

2. Physical mail

Digital messaging is noisy, common, and easy to ignore. And it creates an expectation of immediate reply, so it can often feel like as much of a burden as a gift for the recipient.

But do you know anyone who doesn’t love getting a letter or a photo or a package from a friend – especially if it’s a surprise? Buy some stationery, envelopes, and stamps. Start sending notes, photos, postcards where you might normally send a text or email.

You can get a great sense of accomplishment from sending a piece of mail. There’s also a great period of expectation and waiting that comes with sending or receiving something, but not sending or receiving it instantaneously. The only problem is having to business with the bloody government postal service.

3. Handwriting

I handwrite a journal entry every day at the end of my day. I also handwrite quite a few notes and to-do’s during my day. If I’m lucky, I can read them afterwards.

I had to relearn cursive to get to a place where I was proud(er) of my handwriting. The last time I had really needed it was in elementary school, when I was required to learn it and practice it daily. (For the record, that was a waste of my time).

Now I do have a reason to use handwriting skills, so I do. Handwriting takes more deliberation than texting – it can help you think through what you have to say better. It takes skill and work, so it adds more of a design element to your communications. And people who receive a handwritten note from you will know that you put time and care into addressing them.

Photo by Joanna Kosinska on Unsplash

James Walpole

James Walpole is a writer, startup marketer, and perpetual apprentice. You're reading his blog right now, and he really appreciates it. Don't let it go to his head, though.

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