There are certain obstacles that we all struggle with during our life. Most of us have to work hard to finish school, balance personal & professional life, go through a series of failures to finally land the ideal job, build a family, care for aging parents, and work hard to keep up in this fast-paced world.
Technology has made us faster. Smarter. But it has also made us cold and unfeeling. It has robbed us of our humanity. We may have found our place in the modern world, but how much of ourselves have we let go in the process?
Every time I had the hardship to overcome I would think “I’ll get this done and think about myself & my loved ones later.”
What I didn’t realize at the time was that there will always be another hardship that I need to overcome. Every time I choose to forfeit my wellbeing, and that of others, I am losing a piece of myself.
I also came to the sudden realization that I would have never succeeded without my people.
Family, teachers, colleagues, friends, strangers, relatives and lots of other relationships that I’ve met along the way have helped me become the person I am today. My success wasn’t for granted. So, it is time to pay it forward.
10 Ways to Give others & Find Yourself in the Process
The best way to be useful for the local community to volunteer. You can leave your mark on the world around you and support good causes that don’t necessarily require money, but rather dedicated people.
Think about the causes that you believe in most. What kind of support can you offer? You could provide help at a community kitchen or help dress the poor.
Many hospitals encourage youngsters and adults to join their causes, where they can create customized schedules that respect working and studying hours. The local library might need assistance too for a book reading to delight a young audience.
As you can see, there are many opportunities to get involved in the community. You will finally be able to help others, and in the process, help yourself.
After joining a cause, you will experience and understand the gift of selflessness. You will also be able to meet amazing new people – people who could change your life.
Plus, seeing good prevailing over bad is one of the most fulfilling sentiments in the world and improves your outlook on life.
2. Donate your expertise
You already hold something of immense value for everyone around you, namely your expertise. It is a body of knowledge that you worked hard to obtain, and so few people have access to it.
You can share your technical skills with non-profit organizations, neighbors in need or even a client who has no extended funds for your service (make sure you help them in your spare time, though, so as not to get into trouble at work).
There are plenty of active platforms that work to connect IT professionals to the local NGOs in need of their skills. These non-profits can save large budgets this way for causes that require their financial support, and you will be the one that helped them assist these causes.
Moreover, you can play more proactively and present your manager the opportunity to start a charity tradition within the company. This way, all staff members can share their knowledge to improve the local community.
3. Donate Blood
Unfortunately, despite the heroic efforts of the Red Cross to raise awareness of the crucial importance of donating blood, few people actually do it. Too many lives depend on the blood bank of the hospital, so there’s always a great time to donate your blood.
Donating blood involves simple procedures which are not at all time-consuming. The myth of not eating before such a session is false and everybody should enjoy a light meal before to avoid a low blood pressure.
You will benefit a basic health check before starting and some treats after it is over, like cookies to avoid getting light headed and even ticket meals.
The best part is that it is safe to say after one session that your blood will save three lives!
4. Buy Extra Provisions
Donating money to a cause might not always be the best choice. You can never know where the resources will end up and how well they will be managed.
However, donating food or water is always a safe work of charity. So, little things like purchasing an extra meal on your lunch break for a homeless man can do wonders.
There are some inspiring charitable stories around the world. Restaurants are open where people pay double the price for their meals or beverages and the extra products go to people in need.
Another inspirational movement that you can recreate with your neighbors is finding some functional fridges and installing them at the entrance of the building.
This way, whenever someone buys extra food, they can place the products in the fridge on their way home. The food will be kept fresh until someone in need enjoys it.
5. Random Acts of Kindness
Imagine what the world would be like if every person did one small gesture of kindness every day. You can try to help others with minor acts of kindness. For example, you can take more umbrellas with you on rainy days. A simple gesture of giving an umbrella will bring a smile to a gloomy person who was caught off guard by rain. You could also help an old lady who is having trouble with her baggage, or a child who is struggling with homework or sports.
“People love to hear stories about “random acts of kindness,” those thoughtful little things that people do to help one another. God calls us to do these and more. Join me as I encourage you to reach out with some “deliberate acts of kindness” based on God’s desire that we put our faith into action.”
6. Your house holds great treasures for others
People tend to hoard too many things that they don’t use. By starting that much-delayed general house cleaning you might end up with lots of useful things that you haven’t used at all in the last couple of years. If you haven’t worn that blouse at all this year, it means that you probably won’t be using it this year either. But somebody else might use it every day.
By donating your stuff, no matter if it’s in great shape or not, you can help those in need. Your house will become more functional, you will feel better about yourself, and unfortunate people will benefit.
7. Organize surprise parties for your friends
No matter how uninterested in parties they might look, showing gratitude and love for your friends will always create feelings of happiness.
Few people have actually time to set up gathering with their loved ones on special days like birthdays, a huge work accomplishment, or returning home after a long trip.
So, a surprise party to celebrate your friend in high style can rarely be a bad idea. On the contrary, people will feel appreciated and loved.
8. Take an apprentice (or more) under your wing
You can build your legacy, not only within your family, but also by involving your community. Many young fresh graduates have no idea where to start.
Even more end-up with jobs they hate that prevent them from growing. By taking in an apprentice you are giving them a better chance in their professional life, and you are also enabling yourself to grow.
So, find time to take ambitious youngsters under your wing and teach them everything you know. By becoming a mentor, you will not only create better futures for them through learning, but you will also improve the workforce, the culture of the company and your own skills of leadership.
Don’t put the world on a silver platter for them, but guide them through the hardships of life. When the time comes, you will feel confident enough to cut your emotional cord with them and allow them to live their life.
Society needs as many resourceful people as possible to grow naturally into a caring & strong community.
9. Awareness on the streets
People feel the loneliest when they are outside, in crowded cities, as they disconnect completely from reality and are more focused on their thoughts and problems. Meditation may have innumerable benefits, but there is a time and place for it.
Out on the streets, you should be fully aware of your surroundings, for your sake & for the sake of others.
A flat tire, lost keys, car accidents, smartphone theft attempts, people falling, fainting or getting lost are just some examples of events that can be solved if someone is aware and gets involved.
You can be that someone. Improving safety and community spirit builds up a more powerful society.
10. Encourage your entourage to pay it forward
Talk to your loved ones about the honorable deeds that change the world into a better place. People pay attention and cherish their friends’ advice more than a newspaper article. Use empathy, patience, thoughtfulness, and concision when starting delicate subjects to show your friends the beauty and benefits of paying it forward.
So, you can support your encouragements by taking your friends to your charity activities. Seeing is believing after all. There are high chances that your friends will get involved and support the same causes as you. The community will gain more positive energy, and this will be thanks to you.
All in all, these are just 10 ways to pay it forward. You can bring much more greatness to the world by expressing your civic spirit every day. Small deeds will slowly increase the quality of the community.