Tips and Phrases To Help You Keep Your Emails Positive

Tips and Phrases To Help You Keep Your Emails Positive
15 September, 2023 • ... • 1398 views
Sara Kurczyńska
by Sara Kurczyńska

A positive tone is not something you typically associate with business communication. However, writing positive emails can boost your business relationships and success. First, crafting emails that radiate positivity enhances your reputation. Second, positive emails are more likely to be well-received and easily understood.

If you find it difficult to write such emails, you have come to the right place. In the following guide, we are going to explore the best tips and phrases to use when writing positive emails.

Tips for writing positive emails

It can be harder to communicate in writing than in a business call or in-person meeting since writing can come across as more harsh. Plus, you can not count on body language: no smiling or air quotes when you are being sarcastic or telling a joke. You can not waste the real estate of your email on abstract topics and can not digress like during a meeting or a call, and that can sound cold and distant. So, you have to put in extra effort to make the recipient feel respected and valued. And here is where writing in a positive tone can help you.

It is safe to say that getting one’s message across in writing and making that message both positive and clear is a skill. While it depends on a wide range of other skills, particularly writing skills, it can definitely be learned. 

You do not have to become a master writer. Instead, just being aware of some basic email etiquette and hints should do the trick. If you want to get the hang of it, follow the tips listed below.

Begin and end with something positive

Whenever we read something, we are most likely to remember how it began and how it ended. Scientists call it the serial position effect, and it is a real phenomenon that has been used in many disciplines, from marketing to education. You can take advantage of it in each email you write. You just have to begin and end with something positive.

In the opening sentence, instead of getting straight to the point, congratulate the recipient on something. You could also describe how you enjoyed talking to that person at an event or a work party. It will help set the tone for the rest of the email.

  • I hope you’re having a great week.
  • I hope you’re having a pleasant day.
  • Congratulations on [recent accomplishment]!
  • It was great to see you at [event].

Then, focus on how the email ends. You could use it to reference something that you know the recipient likes. You could also wish them luck if they have something important coming up.

  • I hope you will be able to fit in some [recipient’s hobby] this weekend.
  • Good luck at the [important event]!
  • Sending you good vibes.
  • Have a fantastic [current day of the week]!

What matters here is that you are genuine. If you are not sure what the recipient’s hobby is, do not make a guess. If you make the wrong call, you might confuse the other person. Or, you could try to be more general. Wishing the recipient some well-deserved rest or a lovely weekend should work just fine.

Use proper punctuation and emoticons

As we have already mentioned, written communication can be easily misinterpreted. To prevent that from happening, you should do two things. First, use proper punctuation. It might be a hassle, but it is necessary if you want an email to sound nice and clear. The placement of a comma can sometimes alter the meaning of the sentence. And adding exclamation marks can make your email sound more positive. However, you should use them sparingly and in the right sentences.

Second, you should consider using emoticons. An emoticon here and there can definitely change the tone of any mail for the better. Again, the key here is to use them sparingly and appropriately. It is especially important if you are communicating on behalf of a business. Using the wrong emoji is usually not a big deal when it comes to personal emails. Yet, in a business setting, it can make a message look quite unprofessional.

Here are some good and bad examples:

❌ This document needs quite a few revisions 👎

❌ How was your 🌴? I  🙏 it was 🔥🔥🔥 

✅ Great job on the presentation today 👏

✅ Looking forward to our call 😊

Show that you care

Other people appreciate it when you remember something about them or something that you told them. It shows them that you care about them and are willing to listen to what they have to say. Plus, it can put them in a good mood. So, if you are writing emails, try to remember if there is something about the recipient that you could mention.

If you are writing messages to friends or colleagues, try to recall your last conversation. Did they mention that they were looking forward to something? If it is an upcoming event, you could say you hope that the recipient is going to enjoy themselves. 

Hello Naomi,

Happy belated birthday! Hope you had a great celebration!

It gets a bit trickier if you are writing marketing messages on behalf of a business and addressing a customer or multiple customers. In such a scenario, it would be best to reference their purchase history or interests. If you would like to learn more, check out our article with email personalization examples for your marketing campaigns.

Keep the tone of the email consistent

If you want an email to be positive, make sure that the positive tone is consistent. You do not want your email to turn into a chaotic mixture of positive and negative tones. It will make it harder for the recipient to determine what the meaning of the message is.

A GIF of Mimi Faust saying: Mhm… that tone…that tone…

Alternatively, you could read the message out loud before mailing it. If a word or a sentence does not quite feel like it matches the rest of the email, you are likely to notice that.

Be polite and considerate

The easiest way to write a positive email is to be considerate and polite. Start by double-checking whether you have spelled out the recipient’s name and last name correctly. Nobody likes being confused for someone else or having their name misspelled. If you have already exchanged messages in the past, double-check their address or examine their email signature.

Next, do not expect the recipient to reply in a matter of minutes. Mailing them ten different emails in just two or three days will make you look bad. They might be focused on other work, they might be sick, they might be having a family emergency — there are plenty of reasons why you might have to wait for them to respond. Keep that in mind and be patient before sending a follow-up email.

On top of that, you should not order the recipient around. To illustrate, imagine that you want the recipient to send you a scan of an important document. Here is how you should not phrase such a request:

❌ Mail me the scan of the document I left on the desk.

It might sound clear, but still, it is phrased like an order. It might make the recipient feel like you are being rude. Luckily, you can phrase such a request more positively:

✅ Could you please send me the scan of the document I left on the desk? I really need it for tomorrow’s meeting, but I forgot to bring it with me. 🙁

You start by politely asking for the scan. Then, you explain why you need the scan in the first place. It will help the reader understand the urgency behind the request. Lastly, you add an emoji that literally shows the recipient what you are feeling. As a result, you might be able to get what you are asking for quicker!

Use proper formatting

Do you know how to create good-looking emails? If not, it is time to learn how to do so. The way an email looks in an inbox is important. It sets the tone for the entire conversation. If an email is just a long block of text, just looking at it might wear the recipient down. On the other hand, it should not contain just one or two words or be written in capitalized letters only. The recipient will feel like you are uninterested or angry.

So, with that in mind, use proper formatting. Divide the entire email into sections, and make sure that the body of the message gets the information across. Ideally, it should be the longest part of the entire email. In case the message is getting long, use bullet points to make it easier to digest.

This email only has one paragraph, but it is about several different projects. The formatting is confusing and mixes separate topics into one:

❌ Writing to catch up on the A project timeline. What is the current status of the task? The next call with the team on the B topic is on Friday, please update the documents and be ready to present the sprint results. Also, regarding the works on C: we finally got the approved forms. Lastly, I wanted to remind you to fill out the HR questionnaire, the deadline is next week.

Avoid writing when feeling angry

Are you feeling angry? If so, you likely will not be able to write a friendly email. For a message to be positive, you have to be in the right mindset while writing it. Otherwise, you could end up writing something that sounds sarcastic or simply weird.

To prevent that from happening, avoid writing when you are angry. Instead, take a step back and calm down. Then, come back and finish writing the message. That way, you should find it much easier to come up with a genuinely positive email.

A behavior worksheet with a question: Do you regret what you did? And the answer is Nah.

Check your spelling and grammar

Spelling, grammar, and the overall cohesion and flow of a message can greatly impact the way it is received. That is particularly the case if you are writing to a superior. From the introductory greeting to the call-to-action and signature, an email should be error-free. If it is riddled with spelling, grammatical, and other common email mistakes, the recipient might find it disrespectful.

If you are struggling with such things, do not worry. Consider installing a typing assistant like Grammarly or Wordtune. Think of it as a digital language expert. It checks messages in real-time. It analyzes a wide range of things, including tone, cohesion, and punctuation. Then, it highlights potential errors. It makes avoiding business communication mishaps incredibly easy.

Use affirmative sentences instead of negative ones

Affirmative sentences create a more positive and constructive tone in written communication. Moreover, when you use affirmative language, you are focusing on solutions rather than dwelling on problems. It can lead to more productive discussions and quicker resolution of issues.

Such a negative sentence is clear and direct, but it is likely to leave the recipient feeling disappointed or frustrated:

❌ Unfortunately, we cannot offer you a refund at this time.

In contrast, the affirmative sentence acknowledges the limitation but follows up with a positive and helpful approach. It not only maintains a more positive tone but also opens the door to potential resolutions:

✅ While we can’t provide a refund right now, we’re happy to explore other options to assist you.

Phrases to use in positive emails

When it comes to injecting positivity into emails, the choice of words really matters. Selecting the right positive adjectives, verbs, and nouns can make a mundane email elicit a very specific emotion. Here is a list of some useful examples of positive words.

Adjectives

If you want to express excitement, admiration, or satisfaction, positive adjectives could be useful. Imagine that you would like to thank someone for being supportive in a brief message. You could tell them that you found their messages and comments to be incredibly motivating and inspiring.

Breathtaking Captivating Cheerful
Delightful Ecstatic Energetic
Empowering Enchanting Enthusiastic
Glowing Heartwarming Inspiring
Invigorating Jubilant Magnificent
Majestic Marvelous Motivating
Optimistic Radiant Radiating
Remarkable Successful Supportive
Thrilling Uplifting Vibrant
Warm Wholesome Wonderful

Verbs

A carefully picked verb can turn a boring paragraph into a start to an engaging and positive conversation. You could, for instance, tell a writer you admire that you are fascinated by a story they wrote and that you applaud them for their creativity.

Acknowledge Applaud Captivate
Celebrate Cherish Delight
Elevate Embrace Empower
Energize Engage Enrich
Enliven Enlighten Fascinate
Flourish Ignite Illuminate
Infuse Inspire Motivate
Nurture Propel Radiate
Refresh Resonate Spark
Strengthen Support Thrive

Nouns

There are many ways in which you can express positivity through a noun. To give an example, imagine that your colleague has won a contest. You could tell them that their success brings you joy. You could also comment on how their latest accomplishment is something that they should be proud of.

Achievement Accomplishment Advancement
Appreciation Breakthrough Charisma
Elation Empowerment Encouragement
Enthusiasm Excellence Fulfillment
Growth Happiness Inspiration
Joy Milestone Motivation
Positivity Progress Prosperity
Radiance Resonance Splendor
Success Support Triumph
Upgrade Victory Wonder

Not every email has to be positive

Sure, positive communication is important. Still, not every email has to be overtly positive. Depending on the context, a neutral or even slightly negative tone might be appropriate. The key is to align the phrasing you are using with the message that you are conveying and the relationship you have with the recipient. 

To illustrate, imagine that you are writing a rejection message to a job applicant. The applicant in question had the skills and experience to get the job, but it simply was not enough. A rejection will probably cause a negative emotion, such as sadness, disappointment, or anger. In such a scenario, being overly positive might add insult to injury. It could make the applicant feel humiliated or even mocked. So, when it comes to possible solutions, the wisest one would probably be to stay neutral.

Start writing positive emails today!

Mastering the art of writing positive emails has many benefits. It can enhance your reputation and prevent misunderstandings. In a group environment, it can help you foster a collaborative atmosphere. However, if you want to write emails that radiate positivity, you will need to keep the following tips in mind.

  • Start and end with a smile. Begin and end your emails with positivity. Use a warm greeting and an upbeat signature. You could mention the recipient’s hobby in passing to show that you care.
  • Words and punctuation matter. Choose your words carefully. Favor positive language that emphasizes solutions and benefits. You should also use proper punctuation and pay extra attention to grammar and spelling.
  • Be polite and consistent. Always maintain politeness and consideration. It will make you appear respectful and professional. Other than that, you should maintain a consistent tone throughout the message.

Use the tips listed above to maximize the impact of your written communications in no time. No matter whether it is just email marketing content or day-to-day business communication, it is almost guaranteed to be well-received. Not convinced? Start infusing your emails with positivity today, and see for yourself!

15 September, 2023
Article by
Sara Kurczyńska
Sara Kurczyńska is an experienced content writer from Poznań, Poland. She enjoys writing about digital marketing, as well as playing video games and petting her fancy rats. In her spare time, you can find her birdwatching and taking long walks around the local parks and forests.
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