Between end-of-year work pressures, decorating, holiday shopping and entertaining we often forget that the easiest way to spread a little joy might be doing a simple good deed. Take a look at our list of good deeds, and our spot-light on a Birmingham restaurant owner’s worthwhile nonprofit.
After all, this is the season of giving. Maybe these acts of kindness could be part of your New Year’s resolution.
- Give a genuine compliment
You might be surprised, but a compliment can really turn someone’s day around. Speak up! If a co-worker’s done a great job, compliment her/him on a job well done in front of others (compliments hold more weight when they’re done publicly.) It can be as simple as complimenting a stranger on a really cool pair of shoes they’re wearing. Go ahead, don’t hesitate to give a compliment.
2. Buy someone a meal or a cup of coffee.
We’ve heard about someone in the drive-thru paying for the order of the people in line behind them. Hasn’t happened to me yet, but I’m certain it would make my day!
Yes, most donations to nonprofits are tax deductible, but even more importantly, these nonprofits that serve our less fortunate neighbors, need your donations now, more than ever. Have lots of good stuff you hate to just throw away?
Through Give Back Box you can pack up clothes, household items, games or other things you no longer need, then print a prepaid shipping label to Goodwill at no cost to you. This can be done from any state in the US.
Still shopping online? When you buy goods from over 1,700 online retailers you can use iGive to donate money to your favorite charity.
4. Hold the Door/Elevator
Holding the door may seem like a small gesture, but it is much more helpful than you might think. Consider the person struggling with their arms full, and lend a hand.
5. Call that friend you’ve been meaning to hang out with for months but never found the time for.
It might seem like a chore, and you may even dread it a little. But remember why you liked/loved that person, and reach out. Honestly, you’ll enjoy it as much as they do…probably!
6. Be patient
Sometimes this can be difficult, when waiting in long lines while Christmas shopping or at busy restaurants this time of year. Remember the sales associate, or the hostess at your local food joint, is working, while you are on the other side of the equation. Show a little patience, and love.
7. Help someone who’s car is broken down
Don’t you feel bad when traveling and you see a car broken down, kids piling out, because of vehicle issues. Most of us might be tempted to stop but usually don’t. Consider pulling over, lending a hand, or making sure they have help on the way. Afterall, it could be you (has been me) stuck on the road someday.
8. Offer to do the shopping for a friend or elderly neighbor who is sick or has reduced mobility.
Do you have an elderly neighbor, who might need a little help, but can be stubborn and proud? One way to help is offer to run an errand; remind them that you have to grab a few things for yourself, and would be happy to add their items to your cart.
9.Pick up some litter.
We love the revitalization going on in the Magic City. Do your part. Next time you take a walk or jog, grab a shopping bag, and if you see a bit of litter, pick it up. It really does make a difference!
10. We all gotta eat!
Next time you are trying to decide on a Birmingham restaurant (and we have the best!) consider choosing one that is part of the worthwhile organization Heart to Table.
Heart to Table is a non-profit organization that provides hot, nutritious meals to Birmingham’s homeless on freezing nights when the warming station at Boutwell Auditorium is opened by the City of Birmingham.
The program was developed by Silvertron Cafe owner Marco Morosini, to bring together a coalition of locally owned restaurants and local community partners.
Heart to Table receives financial support from private donors and area businesses, along with volunteers from churches and the Avondale Samaritan Place.
Several Birmingham restaurants supply labor and supplies: including Silvertron, Basil Gourmet Pizza & Bar, Bellinis Ristorante, Bottega, Cantina Tortilla Grill, Chez Lulu, Gianmarco’s Restaurant, La Paz, Miami Cafe, Moss Rock Tacos & Tequila, Rojo, Slice, Ted’s Restaurant, The Abbey, Satterfield’s Restaurant and Vecchia Pizzeria.
There are so many ways to be a good neighbor and to be a better person! What are some random acts of kindness, or good deeds you might have in mind?