Have you ever heard a saying along the lines of, “If every little person in the world did one little act of goodness – the world would be a different place”? At some point in all of our lives, someone has shown each of us some measure of genuine wholesome-filled empathy or kindness.
We may not be living in the best timeline in 2020, but it still stands that the world would be a better place if we would “pay it forward” every now and then. What I mean by that is that if someone does something good for you, randomly pass that good energy on by doing something kind for someone else with no expectation of reward or personal gain.
The goal of this post is to discuss the merits of a few non-monetary ideas that allow you the opportunity to be kind and pass along the good energy that Life may have thrown your way at one point.
Volunteer with a Large Group
On huge way of giving back is to show strength in numbers and help out with a community project that you believe in that benefits many people beyond yourself.
This can be helping beautify a park as shown above or helping out at an entertainment event for a group of sick children. It can be as simple as standing at a spot in a marathon with a group of people to cheer on runners and pass them drinks, or as involved as helping with rounds in neighborhood outreach for an underserviced and at-risk group.
The sky is the limit here, but the major benefit here is that you’re taking on a huge goal as a group and helping out with a small portion. These types of projects typically have tasks of varying sizes, time, commitment-levels, and skill-requirements – and can accommodate volunteers of many different ages and capability/preference groups. You’ll meet other people putting good energy out into the world and potentially make connections that will last you a lifetime.
Take on a Smaller Food Distribution Opportunity
If you’re wanting something with fewer people but still rooted in a system that can do a lot of scalable work – consider checking out a food distribution opportunity.
This typically involves a set-up, distribution, and breakdown/cleanup period – so you can find something in there that interests you.
If you aren’t really a people person, check out the set-up slot for minimized human interaction. If you’d rather mingle with those you’re helping directly, check out the distribution end of things. If none of that is your thing and you just want to come in – do your good deed – and then roll out; talking as little as possible, check out the breakdown/cleanup part of things.
Whatever you decide to do, take comfort in the fact that your social or anti-social tendencies are still putting some good vibes out into the world as you volunteer.
Consider Making Food Drops to Pay it Forward
In the event that your preferred form of giving back just doesn’t involve hours of work or groups of people of any size – consider taking food to those who may be sick or shut-in.
Depending on what program you get affiliated with, this may involve you actually going and doing a little grocery shopping – or it may be as simple as you picking up someone’s order at a grocery store and then bringing it to their home.
You would be putting our physical capabilities to good use helping someone else out who may not be as mobile as you or possessing a health condition that puts them at risk in public places. Either way – you are still personally helping someone and putting more goodness out into the world through your small donation of time.
Personally Hand Donations to the Needy & Speak with Them
If you are feeling like making a HUGE difference to a group that is normally ignored by society, do something personal for the homeless in your area.
Nothing grand. A simple “sandwich and bottle of water with fresh fruit” combo may do for some. For others, it may be a blanket. Whatever you decide to do, try to strike up a conversation because sometimes all these individuals need is a little bit of human kindness and consideration shown to them and their situation. You may come across anger and a plethora of other emotions in this process, but many – if not most – will be grateful and have a bit of their faith in humanity restored.
I have a lot of thought going on in my head regarding this one because of some personal things that I’m planning to do in the future. I also recently came across an amazing YouTube channel that allows homeless people to share their stories and shed some light on their lifestyles to the rest of the world. I will DEFINITELY be doing a post on that channel in the coming weeks because I just feel like more people should know about it.
Travel to Where You’re Needed
The last thing I’d like to propose for your consideration is going to an area where a disaster just happened and helping with relief efforts.
It almost seems as time goes on, these opportunities sadly become more numerous. If it’s not a typhoon, it’s a hurricane or a tornado. Earthquakes and forest fires can devastate areas. And if it’s not that, some of our fellow humans may intentionally act maliciously and harm massive numbers of people.
This is the one no the list that I admittedly haven’t personally done yet, but I know plenty of people who have – and I’ll muster the courage to do the same one day. We are all one group of people at the end of the day in this things we call existence, so we may as well try to help each other out in a REAL way when we can because sometimes it take a little more than money being thrown at an issue.
No Judgment – Help However You Can
I feel like it’s worth noting that I listed non-monetary things in this post because I really do believe the hands-on stuff provides a little extra human-value that monetary donations just don’t. But, I also want to say that monetary donations are ESSENTIAL.
If you can, do both. But if you can’t – as the title of this closing section says, “No judgment – help however you can.” COVID has changed a lot about our daily activities, even the ones meant to benefit society. Here’s hoping that we can support each other through all of it in one way or another.
I also hope this post got you thinking of a few ways that you can give back and contribute to a world of paying good vibes forward.
There are plenty of other ways to accomplish a similar goal (randomly buying coffee or food for the person behind you at Starbucks or Chipotle for example), but I wanted to get people out there with this one.