In today’s evolving world, most people prefer short and instantaneous messages. Since nearly all communication happens online or through mobile phones, many would rather type out a quick birthday message on their friend or family member’s Facebook wall, or send them a virtual greeting card through SMS or their email. After all, this appears convenient for both the sender and recipient. Greeting people on their birthday, though, involved more steps in the past.


Why do we send greetings on birthdays?

China is the origin of general-purpose greeting cards, and England is the birthplace for the kind sent during birthdays. This practice is supposedly over 100 years old, but there are no anecdotes or evidence of who sent the first-ever birthday card. This could be because of culture; traditionally, birthday cards are a form of written apology.

For instance, if someone invites you to a birthday celebration and you could not make it, you were supposed to send a birthday card. The card symbolises your goodwill and is a way of showing the celebrator that your absence is not out of malice or ill will. This eventually shifted in a different direction; cards have come to stand for a more general sense of care.

These types of cards are still appealing to many, especially those who enjoy an old-fashioned greeting. Funny birthday cards, for example, are an effective way of showing your support and appreciation for a friend. Cards are a constant, even today—read on to discover a few reasons why this is true.


They can express emotion

A birthday greeting card lets you show feelings that you cannot state in person. If you want to convey your joy, love, admiration, or some other emotion, sending a card will help you do so no matter how far you are from the recipient. The best part is that your friends and family who receive your card will connect with you emotionally, even when you are not around.


They can build relationships

A friend or relative who is feeling blue would definitely appreciate receiving a card from you. If they are going through a particularly difficult season in their life, a funny birthday card can lift their spirits and remind them of better days.

Another dimension to this is that a handwritten card uplifts their self-esteem. If you spent time physically putting a message to paper, it tells them that you value the connection you have with them. For people who are going through a rough patch, that could mean so much.


They can make weak ties stronger

Sending a card to business contacts is a good way of showing appreciation for your collaborations. If you pen a birthday greeting for an employee or a boss, it lets them know that you value their work. It can lift a worker’s morale knowing that you care for them enough to write a message for them on their birthday.



Birthday cards are a relatively inexpensive way of giving value to someone in your network. A couple of well-written lines or a funny message could make the difference in someone’s day, so if you can, you definitely should send those cards.

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