What is a Personal Letter? Format, Structure and Types of Personal Letter

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Personal Letter

We communicate primarily through social media, messaging apps, and email in this modern era. This is why it might seem that writing a personal letter is a lost art, and It's all too easy to get caught up in a rush and overlook the nostalgic appeal of a handwritten personal letter. But, what we need to understand is that a personal letter is a valuable form of communication and allows us to connect with people in a more emotional and unique way. 

In this article, we'll unveil the mystery around these joyful communication pieces and look into their significance. We'll go over the many forms of personal letters and give you some suggestions on how to write them with style. 

So, if you're ready to begin on a self-expression journey, grab a pen and let's get started!

What is a Personal Letter?

A personal letter is used for person-to-person written communication, and the letter is not intended for public reading. Personal letters are a form of communication that offers opportunities for expressing emotions, such as offering condolences, extending congratulations, conveying gratitude, expressing apologies, or sharing updates. 

Purpose of Personal Letter

The main purpose of personal is to create more emotional connections between individuals. Personal letter allow users to express their emotions and thought more easily which can’t be done with other forms of letter. 

On top of that, it allows the recipient to get a grasp of the sender’s personality, character and emotions, allowing the communication feels more personal and genuine. Furthermore, personal letters can be archived in physical keepsakes and cherished in the future. 

Why Writing a Personal Letter Can Be a Valuable Communication Tool?

A personal letter is a valuable communication tool because it allows individuals to connect with one another more intimately and deepens their bond. It provide an opportunity to build a more stronger relationship. Furthermore, writing personal letters requires efforts and thoughts which make it more meaningful for the recipient. 

Different Types of Personal Letters:

Thank You Letter

This type of letter is written to express gratitude for a kind deed. 

Congratulations Letter

This type of letter is written to celebrate an achievement, accomplishment, graduation, new job or promotion, or any sort of good news. 

Condolence Letter

This type of letter is to write to offer condolences to someone who is in the grief such as the death of a loved one. 

Apology Letter

An apology letter is written to apologize for a mistake or wrongdoing.

The Importance of Selecting the Appropriate Tone 

While writing a personal letter, it is critical to select the suitable tone for the event and recipient. The tone of the letter can help set the tone and effectively express the intended message. If you're writing a thank-you letter to your employer, for example, you might want to use a more professional tone. 

If you are sending a letter to a close friend, on the other hand, you may want to employ a more casual tone. Before deciding on a tone, it is critical to examine the audience and the nature of the message.

Different Tones and Languages to Use in Personal Letters

  • Formal vs. Informal

Formal language is typically used in more professional settings, such as writing to a superior at work or writing a business letter. Informal language, on the other hand, is more casual and is appropriate for friends and family.

  • Casual vs. Professional

The tone of a personal letter should reflect the level of formality of the occasion. If you are writing to a friend or family member, a casual tone is appropriate. However, if you are writing to a colleague, supervisor, or potential employer, a more professional tone is necessary.

  • Friendly vs. Business-like

When writing a personal letter, you can choose to be either friendly or business-like, depending on the situation. A friendly tone is usually used when writing to friends or family members, while a business-like tone is suitable for writing to colleagues or business associates.

Basic Format and Structure of a Personal Letter

A personal letter's format and structure are rather simple. It usually includes a salutation, the letter's text, a closing, and a signature. Each segment is broken down as follows:

  • Salutation

The salutation is the opening of the letter and should include a greeting to the recipient. The greeting can be formal or informal, depending on the relationship with the recipient.

  • Body of the Letter

The body of the letter is where you will write the main message of your letter. This section should be well-organized and easy to read. It is recommended that you break the body of the letter into several paragraphs to make it more readable.

  • Closing

The closing of the letter should include a closing sentiment, such as "Sincerely," "Yours truly," or "Best regards." This should be followed by your name and signature.

Tips on How to Organize and Structure the Content in the Body of the Letter

It is essential to organize and create properly structured content in a way that should be easily readable. Following are a few tips to help you organize your letter content:

  • After the salutation, in the opening sentence you should set the tone and purpose of the letter.
  • To make the letter more reader friendly, use short paragraphs and bullet points.
  • The use of passive voice in a sentence is not recommended. 
  • Use personal stories or memories to make the letter more interesting and engaging.
  • Use descriptive language to make the letter more meaningful for the reader.
  • Keep an eye on grammar and spelling errors, this can ruin the experience for the reader.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Writing a Personal Letter

A personal letter is an excellent way to reach with loved ones and strengthen the bond. This is why it is essential to make the letter error-free otherwise common mistakes can hinder the reader's experience and the purpose of the letter. Here are some common mistakes that you need to avoid:

  • Being too formal is not advisable and the reader might feel emotionally distanced. To genuinely connect with the recipient use the tone that is heartwarming, sincere, and authentic. 
  • Writing too much or too little. 
  • Heading straight to the point or not getting to the point.
  • Using inappropriate tone and language that recipient feels offended.

Etiquette of Sending and Receiving Personal Letters

It is critical to practice correct etiquette when writing and receiving personal letters. Here are a few pointers to get you started:

  • Use proper salutations when addressing the recipient.
  • Write legibly or type the letter.
  • Include your return address and the date on the letter.
  • Send the letter in a timely manner.
  • Be sure to respond to any personal letters that you receive.


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