Wednesday, December 6, 2017

YOU Are the Gift That Can Keep on Giving

Happy Birthday, Brittany!
This post was originally going to be about great wine gifts, but then Brittany started a page on FaceBook and sent a birthday challenge to her friends. From December 1 to the 20th (her birthday), we were to try and do one act of kindness for someone. ONE during this three week period. Just something nice for someone else. But the group immediately decided that if we could do one nice thing, then why not twenty: one for every day leading up to Brittany's birthday. 

Suddenly the page was buzzing. Everyone was listing their "kindnesses" for the day, and amazingly, each was a perfectly extension of the person doing the deed. It seems that all we needed was a little nudge to act human again. (We're all predisposed to be nice, we're just usually too busy or too preoccupied to see what needs done and do it - so start paying more attention.) 

I decided this was the perfect gift -  to continue Brittany’s challenge of giving the gift of kindness for the holiday season, and then we can just take it on through next year. It doesn’t take much time or money, and there are only three requirements to get you into the giving groove:   

1. Slow down, 2. Breathe deep, and 3. Smile

Start by simply giving something of yourself – words of encouragement, a hand to hold, a hug. See, that was easy. Now you’re ready to branch out into the world. Here are just a few ideas to get you started.

At the Office
• Take a coworker coffee.
• Clean out the department fridge, or wash the dishes left in the sink.
• Write a complimentary note and leave it on someone’s desk.
• Invite someone you never talk to out to lunch.
•Write a recommendation and post it on LinkedIn for someone whose work you appreciate.

Out and About
•Hold the door for a group of people.
• Tell someone they are doing a fantastic job.
• Hand out fast food gift cards to the homeless. (Not only will they get a warm meal but they can enjoy it in a warm safe setting.)
• Leave a bucket of snack and drinks out on your porch for delivery people. (They usually don't have time for lunch during the holidays.)
• See someone deal gracefully with a rough situation? Tell them that you admire how they handled the incident.
• Send an anonymous handwritten card to your bank, your favorite winery, that special restaurant telling them how much you appreciate what they do, and be specific: always helpful, great wines, wonderful atmosphere.
Once you start, you’ll be amazed at how many ideas you can come up with. We may live in a world that seems to be on the edge of despair, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up. 
Fight back by being KIND!
Happy Holidays!
~ Joy

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