So it's that time of year where everyone is struggling to keep up with the holidays. There's family coming and going, you may even be traveling yourself. You're cooking, planning, shopping, wrapping and doing many other chores. One thing that tends to happen is people get so busy with their day-to-day lives that they forget to be nice to others.
We can't all be as nice as Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus but every little bit we can put forward helps everyone enjoy the season just a tad bit more. So, we'd like to share some ideas on how to be warmhearted. Many of our suggestions are purely just acts of kindness, but a few do involve spending a little bit to show a lot of joy.
1) Leave extra quarters at the laundromat
It's tough for those that have to take time out of their already hectic schedules to schedule a trip to wash the laundry. Make someone's day by leaving some quarters behind as a kind gesture.
2) Smile at a stranger
Make eye contact and smile at someone to brighten their day. It's so great to have someone spread their happiness sporadically into your day. It'll surprise people and maybe even encourage them to share some happiness as well.
3) Pay the toll for the car behind you
Catch someone off guard by telling the toll attendant that you'd like to pay for the car after you. It's a simple act of kindness that will certainly make their day!
4) Give out a compliment
Tell a stranger that you like their sweater, or that they have a beautiful smile. It's a quick and thoughtful action that will likely leave the recipient smiling the remainder of the day.
5) Leave a great review
Do you have a favorite restaurant or coffee shop? Let them know why you enjoy visiting them. Call out a specific employee even to make your review extra special.
6) Bake cookies for your coworkers
You will be sure to please everyone at work by bringing a sweet treat for all to enjoy. Let your coworkers know how much they mean to you by baking them cookies or a nice homemade delight!
7) Write a handwritten note
You could write a letter to a friend you haven't spoken to in a while. Make a specialty love card for your spouse. Send a letter via mail to a sibling to catch up. Whoever you choose to write, surely it will make their day. It's unique and extremely thoughtful.
8) Offer to babysit
Parents with kids have a hard time finding time to get out and shop together for the little ones. Offer to watch a friends children for an evening and your friends will love you forever!
9) Walk your neighbors dog
Dogs don't understand the holidays. Their used to getting all their owners free time. If you notice a neighbor is busy running around a lot, see if they could use a little dog walking assistance.
10) Donate blood
The blood bank is always searching for donors. It's tough to remember to get out and spend the extra time giving blood when you have so much going on. Put it on your calendar and just remember that you may be saving a life this year.
11) Put a shopping cart back
It always seems that there are carts all over the parking lot while the cart corral is only a few steps away. I suggest you take the extra time to walk it over or even take it all the way back to the door. Grocery employees work really hard and extra hard during the busiest time of the season. Show them your appreciation in a silent way.
12) Shovel a driveway
Do you have an elderly family member or neighbor? Perhaps someone you know has a hard time getting around. Stay in the giving spirit this year by offering to shovel the snow from someone's drive or better yet, shovel the drive anonymously!
13) Help serve food at a homeless shelter
There are plenty of ways to lend a helping hand during the holidays at a nearby homeless shelter. Contact a location that's nearest to you to find out a way they could utilize some help giving back to those truly in need.
14) Take flowers to an adult care facility
Sadly, nursing homes are simply forgotten about during the busy holidays. Pick up some flowers and pay a visit to the care facility and you will surely make someone's day much brighter!
15) Donate school supplies
Schools regularly rely on the help of government funds and compassionate citizens to keep their school supplies stocked. Take some time out of your day to contribute to the little ones in need.
16) Invite friends into your home for the holidays
So many people move away from their hometowns and either don't have the means or time to go visit family during typical gatherings. Tell coworkers and friends that you have an open door policy and you'll be sure to have a house full of grateful guests.
17) Allow someone to skip you in line
Have you ever ran into the grocery store to pick up one quick item and realize every line is packed? Well, a simple way to show a little love this year would be to stay aware of your surrounding while in line. If you see someone behind you with just a few items then give them the go ahead to jump ahead of you.
18) Stay calm during traffic
Certainly easier said than done but it is possible. Traffic this time of year can be worse than normal but keep in mind that Santa is still checking on his naughty list. Try to stay calm when traffic doesn't fall on your side and maybe even let someone cut in on the highway without a struggle.
19) Visit sick children in the hospital
The holidays are typically children's favorite time due to all the delicious food and requested gifts. Kids sick in the hospital may be there into the next year. Pick up a few gifts and see if you can stop in to make someone feel special despite their bad circumstances.
20) Donate old blankets to pet shelter
A company we work with, Border West, gave us this idea and we love it! Go through your old towels and blankets and take them to your nearest shelter. They can always use extras especially if they are a particularly busy pet shelter.
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