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By Angela Maiers

How to Make This Summer Matter

For many, summer is a time for relaxing, refreshing and recharging. No matter what they do for a living, most people take vacations, long weekends, end the work day early, etc. in the summer time.

However, this is no time to put mattering on the back burner. As I’ve often said, Mattering is not an event, a day, a month, or an item on the agenda – it IS the agenda. We need to matter almost as much as we need food, water and air. So, since I know you’re planning to eat, drink and breath this summer, I also want you to plan to matter.

Here are some of the many ways you can make this summer matter:

Send physical notes to people.

Three summers ago, we published this post about two letters that Ohio educator Arin Kress had sent to the students who would enter her classroom in a few weeks. This is the most read post I have ever published, and one school even sent to students a video of teachers reading these letters. More recently, a high school teacher, stunned by a suicide attempt by one of her students, wrote personalized notes to 130 of her students, who were deeply moved.

To whom in your life can you send letters like these?


Reaffirm that YOU MATTER!

Do a “Sign In” of some type and share it with the world!

Here are some ideas where “YOU MATTER” could be “signed in” not to impact just yourself, but others as well!:


  • Cell Phone/Device Wall Paper
  • Post It Notes on Your Mirror/Room
  • Notes left for People You know
  • Sidewalk Chalk in Front of Public Places
  • Cups Designs on Public Fences (Ball Parks, etc)

Adults & Older Students (Teachers, Parents):

  • On Bills you have Signed…and are going to return to a waiter/waitress
  • On Check Memo Lines
  • In Blog Posts
  • Pancakes/Creative Breakfast for your kids
  • Put post-its on all the cars in a parking lot
  • Hold a Sign up for an Hour at a Stop Light/Busy Intersection

Businesses/Community Members

  • You Matter handwritten on all cups handed out the drive-through for a day
  • Written on all Bills
  • Written on all napkins
  • On windows
  • “You Matter” Specials offered to Customers
  • You Matter Days in the Community….Mayor declares “You Matter Day”


Flying “You Matter” banner over a Beach or Major Event

You Matter Signs Held up & Caught on National TV

These are a few of our ideas….We bet you have EVEN MORE!!!!