Sometimes it is the words which are said that make a difference.
Hannah Brencher, founder of letter exchange website More Love Letters, dedicates her time to focusing society’s attention upon a culture of intention, presence, and real connection, and encouraging people to take responsibility for one another’s happiness, through the practice of letter-writing. In addition to founding the first global love letter writing organisation, Brencher was a finalist for TED2013 Global Talent Search in America, delivering a truly fascinating talk as part of the program,Brencher tells her inspiring story and aspirations for society to The Positive.
Hannah Brencher: “My writing love letters to strangers began back in October 2010. I was a recent college graduate, had just moved to New York City, and was participating in a year-long service program which meant I was forgoing a salary for ten months and living simply in the Bronx.”
“The first few months of living in NYC were so much challenging than I ever anticipated. I felt like I was unable to tell my friends and family of the challenges that was pursuing me. As an effort to step out of myself and express my feelings simultaneously, I began writing love letters and leaving them all over NYC.”
“It turned into a website in August 2011. A reporter from the Wall Street Journal reached
out to me as I was approaching the 400 letter mark, wanting to feature me in a piece she was writing on how we use social media to harness the handwritten practice. It was the ‘aha’ moment- social media could power the entire project. I’d spent the year writing love letters to strangers and now I wanted to show other people how to do it, because I actually felt like people wanted and needed this in their lives. We became the first model for what a global love letter writing organisation could look like.”
“Using social media to power actual, tangible letters, our army has grown from just 1 to over 20,000 people. Since August 2011, it has spread to 50 states, 49 countries, established 40 solid campus chapters, and we’ve mailed over 15,000 love letters.”
“My job is a random hodgepodge of so many things. I consider my role for MLL to be ‘Creative Director’. I spearhead the campaigns and really inject the creativity into them, however I also lead a team of 20 individuals and use the rest of my time to speak around the country at colleges and conferences.”
“I do it simply because people need it. MLL has become a part of people’s days. Does it fill me with joy as well? Yes, of course. However I find my purpose where my own wants and desires end and someone else’s needs get fulfilled. That is all the fuel I need to keep going with MLL.”
“Perhaps the most rewarding part of the job is meeting the people who join the movement, getting to know a bit of their heart. It has become my evening tradition to make a cup of tea and respond to all the emails that have come in throughout the day from new letter writers to our site.”
I am able to absorb their stories and really be thankful for all the individuals who have been touched by this movement so far. It has become clear to me that the world really does need more love letters.”
If you wish to discover more about Hannah Brencher or help in the incredible love letter movement please follow the links follow:
What sort of love letters have impacted the world?