Christmas is a time for giving, everyone knows that. But what if you were to give a little bit more of yourself this year? Here's a list of 10 ways to give joy to those who need it most and to also experience joy's glow yourself this holiday season.
1. Give Blood. Donating blood is one of the most selfless things you can do for others during the holidays or throughout the year. Just one pint of blood can save three lives - pretty excellent return on investment! Not everyone is eligible to be a blood donor, so check with your local blood bank or contact the Red Cross.
2. Participate in a Food Drive. Help feed families in your community during the holidays. In Charles County, contact the Southern Maryland Food Bank; outside of the area find a food pantry at Feeding America.
3. Help. Whether it's an elderly neighbor you can help by putting up Christmas lights, or a stranger struggling with too many packages at the store, doing a simple generous task will make you both feel great.
4. Babysit for Free. Make things easier for a family you know and help a mother or father free up a few hours for gift shopping, to take in a non-kid friendly movie, or just to have a quiet meal. Plus, kids might just be on their best behaviour so close to Santa's big day.
5. Help the Homeless. A donation of time or money will not go unnoticed this Christmas season. Organizing a coat donation drive, volunteering at a soup kitchen, donating to a shelter are great ways to remember those less fortunate this time of year.
6. Cover Someone's Shift. Working during the holidays can be a drag if it keeps people from spending time with their loved ones. This holiday season, why not cover the shift of a coworker who needs to see his or her family? It's certainly a sacrifice that won't be forgotten. A bonus is that it can be a kind of fun to work a skeleton crew with just the right holiday spirit.
7. Invite a Loner to Celebrate with You. Too often people celebrate the holidays alone. This year, why not invite a coworker or neighbor who has no one to celebrate with to your home for the holidays? Your selfless invitation will mean the world to that person.
8. Give Away Something You Value. When it comes down to it, you'd be just fine without your GPS device, iPhone or fancy leather jacket. A true test of selflessness is to give away things that are important to you and enjoy what you already have. You can even sell your items and donate the money to a needy family or charity. There are lots of charities who would be happy to take your items, if you can't give directly - try Catholic Charities or Goodwill.
9. Write Letters of Appreciation. This holiday season, take the time to write letters of appreciation to people you truly appreciate. Think about the postal service workers, maintenance workers and even your favorite barista, who all make a difference in your day.
10. Listen. Taking the time to listen to a coworker who's having a bad day or a complete stranger who needs to vent will be much appreciated. Not interjecting with advice or sharing your opinion can be hard to do at times, but simply listening is much easier and just as effective. You never know how a few moments of kindness can warm another's soul.
Fanning Law, LLC Can Help
We assist individuals and families with family law issues and other legal concerns in Southern Maryland, Washington DC, and throughout the region. For more information about how Fanning Law, LLC can help you and your family, contact Bill Fanning at Fanning Law, LLC - The Offices of William C. Fanning, Jr. - 301.934.3620 or at www.fanninglawllc.com.