Stock up!

August 14, 2007

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You can use a shoebox or an expandable file like this one to organize your “stocked up” greetings cards.

I recently found myself at the market looking for a birthday card for a friend. As the clerk was ringing me up, he mentioned he’d never seen anyone spend over a hundred dollars on greeting cards before - joking that must be one special friend I was buying all those cards for. Actually, I have lots of special friends, and that’s why I follow the “stock up” greeting card strategy.

Since most of us are busy people these days, doesn’t it make sense to stock up on things like greeting cards? That way you’re not making a special trip every time another friend has a birthday, graduation, is sick, etc.

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I know your friends and family are important to you, and you might enjoy the idea of making special trips for each person before sending a card. But it’s highly inefficient use of your time. Besides, what’s wrong with making one big “special” trip? Most likely your mom will still be your mom on every mother’s day for at least the couple of years, right?
So here’s how to make this work:

1. Dedicate a shoebox, or picture box as your greeting card box.
2. The next time you go greeting card shopping, stock up on cards for several other occasions as well (anniversary, thank you, sympathy, etc).
3. Mark your calendar with a note for a week in advance of the occasion (Example: Select birthday to send to dad). You can also set an alarm in Outlook or on your PDA to ping you a week in advance.
4. When the time arrives, send the card!

If you consistently follow this strategy, you’ll never have to send the “sorry it’s late, I hope you still love me” card ever again.

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