4 Easy Ways to Give Back
I was blessed to grow up in a family where giving back was a normal and everyday occurrence. If they learned that someone was struggling, they would do everything in their power to solve the situation. If my grandmother learned that someone didn’t have a place to live, she’d offer free room and board. If there was someone who couldn’t find work, my mother wouldn’t rest until they had the education, wardrobe, interview skills, connections, and confidence to find a job to support their family. As a child, I received the message loud and clear: we have been blessed with more than enough food, shelter, clothing, money, education, and love, and it should be our pleasure to share those things with everyone who crossed our path.
Through the example of my family members, I learned that giving back isn’t just the right way to live – it’s the only way to live. I used to ask my grandmother why she gave away most of her money to her church or why she’d give up her privacy to let strangers live with her. As a child, I just couldn’t understand why she’d take on a burden to help other people. She always replied that for everything we give, we receive twice as much in return. If you give love and kindness, you’ll get it back – and have more love and kindness to give away again.
Seeing my parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins do so much for so many people has left a lasting impression on my heart. While I’ve always tried my best to donate my time and resources, the overwhelming negativity of the past few months have inspired me to give back more. Lately, it seems like every social media, television, and radio conversation is negative and nasty. Today I’m partnering with Do Good. Live Well. to change the conversation.
They’re a branch of United Healthcare, and their message centers around the idea that giving back isn’t only good for your community – it’s also good for your personal health. I couldn’t agree with their message more. If you’re feeling low, I promise you that giving back to your community will reinvigorate your spirit and enhance your physical and mental health. Today I’m sharing four easy ways to give back in your community, and I’d love to hear from you about ways that we can all make this world a better, kinder, and more compassionate place! Be sure to use the hashtag #DoGoodWeek to share positive stories about how you’re giving back in your community. You can also head to dogoodweek.org to see all of the posts from this amazing campaign.
Easy Ways to Give Back to Your Community
No matter what situation you’ve gone through or are going through, giving back to others who are facing hard times will help you find the peace required to move forward past your struggles. Your hard times have uniquely prepared you to help someone else. Think about what you needed in your time of need, and be that person for someone who needs you!
Draw Inspiration From Your Own Struggles
For example, if you or a family member has experienced mental illness, you know that hardship better than most. Use your experiences to help you be a better, more informed volunteer for mental health resources around the country or to create a charity or support group of your own. If you’ve experienced homeless, find ways to give back to the people or organizations for the homeless who helped you. If you’ve been bullied, join forces with anti-bullying campaigns around the nation.
Give Back What You’ve Been GivenOur talents, passions, and personal success shouldn’t be hoarded away. We need to share our gifts with others and use them to make this world a better place. Whatever skill you may have, it is useful. If you’re a makeup artist, teach a woman in need how to apply work-appropriate makeup to help her land a job to support herself. If you’ve been blessed with a beautiful voice, give your local nursing home a free performance to boost their spirits. If you’re great with kids, consider volunteering at your local children’s hospital. Whether you’re a poet, ballerina, professional athlete, or a secretary, your skills are valuable to someone. Share your knowledge with others!
Help When You Can, Where You CanToday’s digital world allows us to help others no matter where we live. If you have access to a computer and the internet, it is possible to find a way to help others. Crisis Text Line gives anyone struggling with mental health or relationship issues access to free, instant, and private crisis counseling via text message. You can volunteer to help people around the nation through their hard times from the comfort of your own home, and Crisis Text Line will give you free training to provide the best support possible. If you’ve had success in business, you can volunteer to mentor small business owners around the globe with MicroMentor. For more virtual volunteer opportunities, check out Volunteer Match.
Give What You HaveIf you can’t volunteer your time or your talents, consider what you have to give. Is your closet overflowing? Consider donating the clothes that are collecting dust in your drawers to a local women’s shelter. Have you been blessed with a plentiful bank account? Donate some of your earnings to a reputable non-profit with a cause that you’re passionate about. If you have a large social following, promote organizations that are doing great work like helping our veterans.
I promise you that no matter what your current circumstance may be, giving back to your community is possible – and your efforts will make a difference. How do you eat an elephant? One chunk at a time. While each of our individual efforts may be small in the scheme of things, every act of kindness and compassion really does add up to make a huge difference in the world. If you’re looking for inspiration on ways to give back to your community, check out Do Good. Live Well. Do Good Week and share your positive stories online with the hashtag #dogoodweek. If you see someone completing a random act of kindness, tweet it out with the hashtag! If you head to volunteer at a local non-profit, post an Instagram with the hashtag. If we all speak together, we can change the conversation to something good!