"Give yourself entirely to those around you. Be generous with your blessings. A kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal." -- Steve Maraboli
When you share small acts of kindness, you are giving back more than you might think. You spread cheer to someone else. You elevate your own mood. You inspire more giving. Giving can have a ripple effect. The recipient of your act of kindness benefits, and so do any witnesses. Oh, and you just may enjoy the feeling of giving so much that it turns into a giving spirit that lives on well past the holidays.
So here are some ideas:
1. Call a friend you haven't talked to all year.
2. Spread good news about someone.
3. Collect cans of food and donate them to a food bank.
4. Gather up your old coats and donate them to Goodwill or a homeless shelter.
5. Pay for someone's layaway anonymously.
6. Run an errand for someone.
7. Buy books for strangers. Books can change lives.
8. Give an unexpected generous tip to make someone's day.
9. Buy someone in your family a journal and inscribe it your best life lesson on the first page.
10. Bake some holiday cookies and share the sweet merriment with your neighbors.
11. Leave a note of cheer on someone's windshield.
12. Sign up for a holiday 5K because the money goes to a good cause.
13. Donate possessions you no longer need to the Salvation Army.
14. Bring a box of toys to a children's hospital.
15. Have a beautiful photo framed and send it as a gift to someone special.
16. Smile at a stranger.
17. Give a genuine compliment every day.
18. Bring treats to the office to share with coworkers.
19. Donate blood and save a life.
20. Bring some blankets, dog food or pet toys to the animal shelter.
21. Write a note or send an email of appreciation to someone who has positively impacted your life.
What are some of the special ways you give back during the holidays? Let's add to this list. Share your act of kindness in the comments section below. Happy Holidays!
Fauzia Burke is the founder and president of FSB Associates, a digital publicity and marketing firm specializing in creating awareness for books and authors. For online publicity, book publishing and social media news, follow Fauzia on Twitter: @FauziaBurke and Facebook. To talk with FSB and ask your book publicity questions, please join us on Facebook.