Sometimes, the best gifts that you can give are free (which, if you’re like almost everyone else, is good news; wallets are always a little lighter this time of year). Here’s a list of 10 good deeds you can do this holiday season.
1. Send a card to a soldier: A quick web search can connect you with numerous organizations that can put you in touch with a soldier that is serving overseas. Pick one and send them a Christmas card. If you’ve got room in your budget, consider putting together a care package for them.
2. Volunteer at your kid’s classroom: Are you fortunate enough to have some extra time off of work this year? If so, consider volunteering in your child’s or grandchild’s classroom. Teachers always appreciate an extra set of hands, and your student will love sharing their day with you.
3. Pick a random name from the phone book and send a greeting card: Who knows; maybe you’ll make a life-long friend!
4. Pay for the people behind you: When you’re in a fast food drive-thru line, at your favorite coffee shop, or at the grocer, you have an opportunity to brighten someone’s day. Pay for their entire order or just kick in $5; either way, they’ll be grateful.
5. Create holiday cards for nursing home residents: The holidays can be a depressing time of year for nursing home residents. Consider making some homemade Christmas cards and distributing them in person at a senior living center in your community.
6. Babysit for someone: Babysitters aren’t cheap, making even the simplest date nights absurdly expensive for parents of young children. Extend your babysitting services free of charge to a friend or family member.
7. Make a donation to the Salvation Army: Not only does your donated clothing, furniture, appliances, and electronics go to help a family in need, but your donations are tax deductible. How’s that for a win?
8. Shop at a Locally Owned Business: Online retailers and big box stores get a lot of love over the holidays. This year, give back to your community by keeping your dollars local. Need a few reasons for why you should consider spending your dollars at a small business? Check out our article here.
9. Befriend Your Neighbor: Maybe you’ve recently moved into your home or maybe you’ve been there for decades. Either way, if you’re like a surprisingly large portion of the population, you couldn’t pick your next-door neighbor out of a lineup. Remedy that by hand-delivering a card or gift basket.
10. Be kinder than you have to be: Let someone merge in front of you on a busy road, let a fellow hurried shopper go first in the checkout lane, and give extra grace to your co-workers.
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