, and means "of or for the heart." Some etymology manuals suggest it means something closer to "sincere."Pros and cons: Strictly based on the definition, "cordially" would appear to possess personal undertones. (Defining X as "kiss" goes all the way back to 1763, according to 's Jessica Bernett and Rachel Simmons. What it means: According to the , the phrase is "a polite expression used when acknowledging a gift, service, or compliment."Pros and cons: "Thank you" can sound forced. In , Post calls it "the best ending to a formal social note" available (p.

And yet, it can also come off as stiff and formal, making it ideal for business correspondence and not much else. At the same time, signing emails this way makes it sound like you 's Rule No. "Regards,"What it means: Short for "kindest regards," at least according to Emily Post's seminal work, . "It has surfaced in the digital correspondence of everyone from Arianna Huffington to Nora Ephron…. "Best," What it means: Short for "best wishes." Pros and cons: "Best" can sometimes feel abrupt. Pros and cons: In this case, silence can speak volumes. "Thanks," on the other hand, is pithy and versatile. According to lore, ancient sculptors often used wax in their stone statues to hide their mistakes.

Avoid gossiping or saying anything negative about others.

Assuming you're not an automaton, there are better options further down this list. "Cheers,"What it means: By the late 14th century, the verb had taken on two meanings: (1) To "cheer up, humor, [or] console," and (2) "to entertain with food or drink." Let's go with the latter. 351 states that "Americans who say 'cheers' are pretentious twits." Typically used by: The British. "It is too bad that the English language does not permit the charming and careful closing of all letters in the French manner," writes Post (p.294). Pros and cons: This is one of those divisive sign-offs. "Take care,"What it means: Shorthand for "take care of yourself." Pros and cons: It's friendly, conversational, and versatile. ) But ideally, "take care" should be left for people you know in real life. Richard Kirshenbaum, chief executive of the ad firm Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners, once told that "warmly" felt like a comfortable middle between "love" and "sincerely." "I want to convey a sense of warmth and passion, but also be appropriate," he said. In Diane Sawyer’s newsroom, staffers say, the anchor uses xo so frequently that its omission can spark panic." Indeed, xo's colloquial brevity is feminizing the workplace — for better or worse. If you're sensitive to other people's feelings, you can always tack on a "best regards" or the aforementioned "best wishes." But "best" fits a wide variety of individual case uses, from acquaintances to strangers to bosses. Just bear in mind that you can trigger a variety of thought patterns, often simultaneously:• "I have no time for nonsense."• "I don't want to waste your time with nonsense."• "I'm too indecisive to think about a proper sign-off."• "I am possibly a mean person."• "You're on thin ice at the moment."Typically used by: Your boss when you request extra vacation time. Just don't use it too much in a back-and-forth, lest you sound like an apologist. Thus, a sculpture "without wax" was the work of an honest man.

Typically used by: Job-hunters sending "thank you for meeting with me" notes. On one hand, its formality gives you a professional blank slate — great for that new co-worker you can't quite get a read on yet. According to one commenter at , "regards" communicates something akin to "go to hell."Typically used by: Frenemies. Barbara Bogaev at makes a good point: "Take care" might sound insincere to someone you don't really know very well. "Warmly,"What it means: "With warmth," but in adverb form. I'd argue that its open-endedness is part of its appeal.

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