The 52 Love Notes Challenge

In under three minutes, participants write a love note to their significant other. The notes are then read by the person they were intended for, and it’s said that when you find your true love you’ll know because of how amazing these 52 moments will be.

The “how to write a declaration of love” is a challenge that has been going on for awhile. The challenge asks participants to write 52 love notes and leave them in public places.

Vintage woman reading handwritten letter from soldier in front of his photo frame.

Note from the editor: This is a guest post by Joshua Gordon.

The capacity to love the same lady for over 50 years is one of the characteristics of a wonderful guy. Hands down, that’s macho. It’s something that our day’s airbrushed elite can’t seem to grasp. Many people in my age have entirely given up on it. It’s something I’ve dedicated to, and in the tradition of the Art of Manliness, I draw inspiration from great men of the past.

I see certain recurring motifs as I go through the dusty pages of history. Men who had been married for a long time (Winston Churchill, George Washington, George H. Bush, Ronald Reagan, etc.) had a habit of writing love letters to their spouses on a regular basis. They honed their capacity to express themselves in writing.

And some of those gentlemen were skilled letter writers. For a better fit, put this on:

My Lovely Wife

This letter is to alert you about a wicked conspiracy hatched by some of our so-called friends — calendar manufacturers (ha!) and even our own children. These and other things make it seem like we’ve been married for 20 years.

Maybe 20 minutes, but never 20 years. To begin with, it is common knowledge that a person cannot maintain the high degree of pleasure I experience for more than a few minutes – yet my happiness continues to rise.

I’ll admit to one puzzlement, but I’m sure it’s simply a prank played on us by our buddies — (Ha!) I don’t recall ever being without you, despite the fact that I was born more than 20 minutes ago.

That’s OK – it’s not significant. What matters is that I don’t want to be without you for the next 20 years, 40 years, or whatever many years there are. I’ve become used to being content, and I really adore you.

Your 20-something-year-old husband.

Ronald Reagan was the author, a guy who sent hundreds of love letters to his wife over the course of their 50-year marriage.

Imagine what constant love note writing might accomplish for us average joes if writing love letters could keep the marriages of history’s great men going–guys who endured the acute strains and temptations that come with positions of power! And that’s exactly what I set out to learn last year.

The Obstacle

The love letter has virtually been eliminated by today’s quick communication methods, which is a heartbreaking pity. Don’t get me wrong: I like today’s technological marvels. Email? It’s fantastic–so practical. Same goes for texting. Twitter? It’s as addictive as it gets. These are excellent tools for interacting with coworkers, establishing arrangements with pals, and even requesting a shopping list.

A well-written love letter, on the other hand, may express profound emotion in a manner that a thousand messages, emails, and tweets can’t.

It was simple to see how my fixation with “immediate” had gradually corroded my desire to devote additional thought and time to properly crafted love letters to my wife in my own life. So, last year, I made the decision to make a shift. I made a resolution in January 2011 to write one love letter to my wife for each week of the year. That’s a total of 52.


I knew it would be a difficult task for me before I started. I was mostly skeptical about my capacity to compose one love message every week. I was certain I’d forget and skip weeks, so failing to complete the challenge.

I came up with the idea of writing the notes in bursts. I would sit down for an evening and write between 5 and 10 notes, which I would then spread across the next several weeks. This kept me on track, and once the year drew to a conclusion, I was able to reflect on the year and rejoice in the knowledge that I had given all 52 loves letters to my wife.

My wife and I both found the task to be quite enjoyable. I had a lot of fun concealing them in locations where I knew Sarah would come upon them. (Hint: the fridge is a fantastic location.) The same may be said for the bathroom counter. Her pillow is, too.) I had a lot of fun watching Sarah look for and read the notes. When she read the messages, she told me how unique, adored, and valued she felt. I’ve caught her re-reading old love letters and smiling to herself on occasion–and man! That makes me so happy.

Our relationship gained a new vigor, a lightness, throughout the course of the year. The 52 Love Notes Challenge was a resounding success in the end.

Tips & Examples for Writing Love Notes

Handwritten latter is being displayed.

June Cash receives a love letter from Johnny Cash. From the Cash House.

Over the course of 2011, I started to notice a few things that aided me in the process of composing love letters. I’m not going to recreate the wheel since AoM has some very wonderful pieces about how to write swoon-worthy love letters (see here and here), but here are some rules I utilized for myself:

  1. When writing, be thoughtful.
  2. Make up new ways to communicate “I love you.”
  3. Make a list of the things you enjoy about your wife.
  4. Use poetry as a source of inspiration.

The toughest aspect is really getting started; as the year progressed and I gained more experience, I discovered that writing the notes grew simpler and easier. Sarah has hand-picked her ten favorite notes for you to check out if you need some assistance getting your amorous ideas rolling. Feel free to change them to fit your needs (other people’s words might be a fantastic place to start when you’re stuck):

Dearest Friend and Lover, I can’t help but be overwhelmed by the influence you’ve had on me as I look back on this year. You push me to be the best I can be. Christmas is about appreciating the blessings we have in our life, and I am humbled by the gift of you. With all of my heart ===================== Greetings, Sarah! We’ve gone through a lot, and I’m sure we’ll face more challenges in the future. I am not terrified when I attempt to picture the harsh times ahead of us. My mind tells me I should be concerned, yet I am not. It’s all because to you. I know you, and I know that if we go through this together, we’ll be OK. You are a secure haven for me. ===================== To my wife and co-conspirator. I was looking for something to do the other day that I thought would be exciting. It was probably something ridiculous and impracticable, like selling our vehicle and riding our bikes everywhere, or moving to Taiwan, or getting a huge tattoo. Any other individual would have stopped me in the middle of my speech. You, on the other hand, paid attention to what I said. You’ve agreed to let me tell you about my ridiculous and unworkable fantasy. One of the reasons I adore you is because you allow me to be myself. I can’t get over how amazing you are. – Sarah ==== Josh One of the qualities I like about you is your genuine concern for others. You interact with the environment around you. You really want to improve things. There are a lot of folks that aren’t like you. You inspire me to strive to be a better guy. ===================== Greetings, Sarah! Strange things happen to me because of you. In the silence, I sometimes feel weirdly overwhelmed by how little I know about you. Yes, we’ve been married for a long time, and I’ve enjoyed getting to know you, but it’s remarkable how deep you go. You always have something amazing inside of you. ===================== Sarah, When I go back on our wedding day, the most of it is hazy and dreamlike, but one item stands out. “I do,” I recall hearing you say. I can see your lips say the words, hear your voice in my ear, and recall the rush of emotion that washed over me (which I handled in an extremely manly fashion). There have never been two words that have meant so much to me. Yours, ===================== Greetings, Sarah. I adore you in every way. Your mismatched socks are adorable. Your sly smile is one of my favorites. I adore your odd obsession with goats. I admire your passion for coffee. I like your dress sense. I like your ability to pay attention. I appreciate your friendliness. I like your calmness. Your chuckle is one of my favorites. I like everything about you. – Josh ==== Greetings, Sarah! It never seems like enough no matter how many times I tell you “I love you.” I feel as though my profound fondness and unwavering dedication for you is just too vast to be communicated in anything other than a lifetime of “I love you” statements. That’s wonderful, because I have a lifetime in store for you! ===================== Greetings, Sarah! So many of my ideas about life have been challenged by you. You’ve altered my perception of kindness. You’ve made it possible for me to stop listening to myself and start listening to what other people have to say. You’ve transformed my perspective on life and realigned my priorities. Without a doubt, you’ve improved my awesomeness. Thanks! Josh – ==== Greetings, Sarah! I want more of you as I get to know you. It’s becoming more difficult for me to fathom life without you as I meet more of you. I’ve created my universe around your beauty, knowledge, and spirit without realizing it, and it looks fantastic. Sarah, you are the rock on which my existence is built, and I adore you. Josh –


In 2012, do the 52 Love Note Challenge!

So there you have it, guys. This year, I dare you to include written love letters in your repertoire of romantic gestures. Make your partner’s life more romantic by becoming the most romantic guy he’s ever met. Express your affection for her in a manner that is genuine and heartfelt. In 2012, have a happier and stronger connection with your primary squeeze and co-conspirator.

So there you have it, guys. This year, I dare you to include written love letters in your repertoire of romantic gestures. Make your partner’s life more romantic by becoming the most romantic guy he’s ever met. Express your affection for her in a manner that is genuine and heartfelt. In 2012, have a happier and stronger connection with your primary squeeze and co-conspirator.

At, Joshua Gordon writes on having an extraordinary life. He’s leading his precious fam as far away from dull, template life as he can with his wife Sarah.




Watch This Video-

The “how to write an old-fashioned love letter” is a challenge that has been going on for quite some time now. The goal of the challenge is to write 52 love notes in one week.

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