If you’re celebrating the holidays chances are you’re spending today wrapped in a warm blanket, curled up by the fire and sipping hot chocolate with loved ones. You may have spent the last weekend ice skating, baking cookies or opening up a present or two. But, what have you done for someone else this holiday season?
While the holiday season is a joyful time for many, it can also be a difficult time for others. If you live an altruistic lifestyle, you can give back and make someone’s holiday a bit more joyful. Here are six ways you can brighten someone else’s holiday season.
1. Call your loved ones.
One simple way to brighten someone’s holiday season is by simply calling. Some of your loved ones might live far away, have different plans or not be able to see you during the holiday season. Particularly for older family members with limited mobility, this can be difficult. However, you can brighten their day by simply giving them a call and checking in. A few quick words of encouragement and affirmation can make a world of difference this season.
2. Make extra dinner.
Food is always the perfect way into someone’s heart, especially through holiday dinner. You can spread love and brighten someone’s day by making a little bit of extra food to share. For people who may not be able to cook for themselves or can’t afford to buy the ingredients, this can truly be the greatest gift of all.
3. Invite someone over.
It’s often been said that the holidays are the loneliest time of the year. Unfortunately, lots of people find themselves alone during this season for a variety of reasons. Bring extra joy this year by inviting someone into your home. Share food, time and conversation with them to show how much they are loved and valued this holiday season.
4. Donate a gift.
Many individuals, families and children cannot afford gifts this year. If you find yourself with a little bit of extra income, time or gifts this week, consider donating extra presents to a family in need. Whether you give gently-used goods, or buy a brand new toy off the shelf, you can definitely brighten someone else’s day—particularly a child’s.
5. Volunteer in the morning.
We get it: holidays are time to spend with your loved ones, which makes volunteering a tough request. But, why not consider volunteering before the celebrations? After you open presents with family, create a new tradition by volunteering at your local shelter or nonprofit organization. A simple hour or two of your time can have a huge impact on someone’s day. Afterwards, you will still have plenty of time left to spend together eating, talking and celebrating.
6. Have a conversation.
Ultimately, one of the most valuable gifts you can give this is your time. Have a deep, intimate conversation with a loved one, neighbor or even a complete stranger, to share in the spirit of the season. While some people might feel alone or hurt during the holidays, you can share joy by listening to their stories and speaking affirmation into their lives.
The holidays are a wonderful time to spend together with family, friends and loved ones. However, it’s also an opportunity to give back. If you want to brighten someone else’s holiday season this year, keep these tips in mind to spread the holiday cheer.