When is a Kiss Not a Kiss!?

Author: Emma Allison

I remember when I was growing up that once a year on my birthday I would get a card from my grandparents. There would undoubtedly be something “boyish” on the front like a sailboat or a footballer (an Aussie footballer, not a soccer player!) and inside would very simply be my name followed by “love Grandma & Gramps, xxxooo”.

This was acceptable and quite common practice from what I’m lead to believe.

When I started my professional career emails were the thing (yep, not that old!) and I was trained that emails begin with “Dear” and end with something like “Yours Sincerely” or less formally “Kind Regards”. Everybody did it and no matter whether it was external or internal communication everyone followed this format.

This was acceptable and quite common practice from what I’m lead to believe.

Now I’m 15 years older and none the wiser and I find myself wondering at almost every turn “What is the appropriate way to end this communication?” Once, I accidentally ended a phone call with one of my clients with the words “I love you” – I knew instantly that this wasn’t right but continued like nothing had happened anyway.

Recently though I have noticed that although we are not going as far as I did and verbalising it, a large percentage of people, in a professional capacity, are choosing to take a leaf out of my Grandma’s book and signing off emails, texts and social media comments with an “x”. When did it become appropriate to end things with a kiss?

This brings me to my big question…

Is an “x” still a kiss?

Actually, I wish this was my only question. It’s not. How many kisses is enough? How many is too much? And what ever happened to the good old hug “o”?!

The answers to these question and more I’m sure are wide and varied and each one as valid as the next so I will leave you with one thought…

Where do we go from here?


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