"And in the end it's not the years in your life that count.

It's the life in your years."

˜ Abraham Lincoln

In honor of Lincoln's birthday and in celebration of Valentine's week, I came up with a new twist on writing "love" letters.

Instead of just writing love notes to my family this year, I should write letters of appreciation to the great leaders who have added "life to my years."

Lincoln was a great leader. His example was one of honesty, integrity and steadfastness in his beliefs.

If Lincoln were alive today, I would thank him for being such a positive role model for me, my children, and people everywhere.

This thought inspired me to really think hard about the influential people who I have had in my life - the teachers, preachers and mentors, and the valuable lessons that they have taught me.

Because of these special people, I have become the person that I am today... the reader, the thinker, the writer, the creator, the nurturer, the believer, the doer, the friend.

Being a week full of honor and celebration, I am going to let these special people know what they have meant to me through the art of writing "love" letters or more appropriately, letters of appreciation.

My initial "love" letter would be to my first grade teacher, Mrs. Dobbins, who introduced me to reading and gave me a thirst for knowledge. It would go something like this:

Dear Mrs Dobbins (sample letter)

My second letter would be to Mr. Rodgers, my 7th grade Social Studies teacher, who showed great disappoint in me when I got a 78 on a project because he knew that I could do so much better than that.

To this day I do everything to the best of my ability. I have even raised my children with the philosophy of "going above and beyond" on all assignments and tasks.

The letters could go on and on, and they will.

However, the point here is that there are so many important people in our lives that would be forever grateful if they only knew how much they meant to us and how we are better because of them.

Examples, of great personal leaders who might have had a part in creating the amazing, wonderful you, are:

- Education - professors, teachers, counselors, principals, superintendents

- Place of worship - heads of worship, facilitators of classes, counselors

- Extracurricular - coaches, club leaders, personal mentors

- Work - bosses, professional mentors, colleagues

- Public - presidents, "Fore Fathers," representatives, judges, military personnel

On this very special day that is Lincoln's birthday, what better way to show appreciation than through handwritten "love" notes that sing their praises through detailed examples?

Maybe you will mail them, maybe you won't.

If you can, it would surely make all the difference in the world to those who have made all the difference in the world to you.

This is your chance to say "thank you," maybe one last time.

Be sure to make a copy of the letter for yourself, then mail the original to your influential leaders or at the very least, a close family member of their's who will appreciate knowing just how much their loved one affected your life.

If mailing them is not possible, then keep the letters close so that you come across them often, reminding yourself of all the wonderful people who you have been blessed to know.

This project will be a great inspiration for not only yourself as you continue your journey of personal growth, but will warm the hearts of those who helped you along the way.

Here's to another Inspired Minute!

Author's Bio: 

Hi there! My name is Tracey and I’m on a mission to turn average days at home into meaningful minutes. I’m a wife, mother of 3 and an Inspired Life Blogger. This is my journey to create ways to save time, maximize money, creatively organize, craft, gift, and decorate and humbly volunteer. Please visit my blog at InspiredMinute.com for ideas and tips that I hope will inspire you!