Wow, what a year 2017 has been! Does anyone else feel like the year has gone super quick? Because I definitely do. From exploring hidden gems in Cyprus and getting lost in Venice, to picnics under the Eiffel Tower, my year has been one great big adventure. And I can’t wait for more in 2018!
As you all know, I love to give back and one thing that made my year extra special was helping others whenever I could. We can get so caught up in the chaos of everyday life that we often forget to think about others. But a small gesture of kindness can not only make someone else’s entire day but it can also make yours.
Giving back is so simple and I have put together a list of 12 acts of kindness that I gifted throughout the year.
Treat A Stranger – I was in line at Starbucks waiting to buy my favourite green tea latte when the lady in front of me ordered a large coffee. After ordering she realised she didn’t have enough cash on her, so I gave her my change to make up the difference.
Clothing Donation – Every few months I do an apartment clean out and donate my unwanted/unused clothes and goods to various charities in need. Throughout the year I also sell items on eBay, donating the proceeds to charity.
Helping Animals – Once a year I collect a bag full of old blankets and towels and donate them to my local animal shelter. During winter especially, their supply often becomes dirty and damaged quite quickly due to the wet weather so they need as much as they can get.
Brighten Someone’s Day – I normally don’t approach strangers, but during a recent trip to the theater I saw a woman wearing a cute pair of ankle boots (I do love my shoes!), so I approached her, complimenting her and her boots. She replied saying that she’d had an awful day and that my comment had just lifted her spirits. Such a simple gesture on my part and it completely made her day!
The Unexpected – I paid for three hours parking at Westfield, however I was finished shopping in just one. Upon leaving I gave my ticket with the remaining two hours to someone who had parked in a space nearby. They were so appreciative and said if they were done within the two hours they would pass the ticket onto someone else. Love the pay it forward idea.
Giving Thanks – Every day I say good morning to the cleaner in my apartment block. She works hard and she deserves just as much respect as any other income earner.
Volunteer – I volunteered with the charity Marie Curie during their Christmas collections. I gave up a few hours of my day, visited my local train station and stood with a bucket collecting donations. I raised £87 which equals four hours of nursing care. It took little effort on my part and will make a huge difference to those needing the nursing services.
Gift of Love – Even though Luca and I live and travel together, our schedules can be quite busy, so whenever we’re not together I always try and leave him notes around the house to say “I appreciate you, thank you and I love you.” Making sure that I never take people for granted is really important to me.
Provide Assistance – Too often I see people struggling to lift their suitcases up stairs in train stations, etc., so I always offer my assistance. I mean, two hands are better than one right and I’ve so been there before.
Kind Gesture – Waiting in line at the supermarket, there was a lady behind me with two very energetic young children. By the look on the mothers face, I could tell she just wanted to get them home, so I asked if she wanted to go in front of me. She was beyond grateful and it was nice to know her day was made a little more ‘stress free’.
Hold The Lift – There are so many times when I’m standing in the lift, the doors are closing and I see someone running towards it, only to miss it. I always think that the person running for the lift is probably just as much in a rush as everyone already inside the life. So whenever I’m near the front, I always make it a point to hold the door open for them.
Hotel Toiletries – relaying my blog post ‘how your hotel toiletries can help others’, I always like to collect the shampoos, shower gels, etc., from my hotel stays when I travel and donate them to my local woman’s shelters once I have collected a nice bag full.
Whatever it is you do, never underestimate your ability to make someone else’s life better.