In case you don't know, #GivingTuesday is the day after CyberMonday, and instead of spending money on all sorts of gifts, it gives you the opportunity to give back to your favorite groups, by either donating time, money, goods, services, etc... It's a wonderful day, and I participated myself, as I usually do. I donated to the Providence Animal Shelter, Chenoa Manor, and bought a new KVD liquid lipstick called Thumbelina and 20% of proceeds go to Farm Sanctuary, a sanctuary the helps farm animals after they've been rescued from the horrible conditions they're subject to on farms.
#GivingTuesday is but one day, with the rest of the month basically dedicated to materialistic presents and spending unnecessary amounts of money on things that people don't really need. So, I motion we turn #GivingTuesday into #GivingDecember. Why should one day out of the whole year be dedicated to helping out those who need it? 31 whole days, and but 1 to help others. That seems a big crazy when you stop and think about it, doesn't it? So, I wanted to give you some examples of things you can do to extend this #GivingTuesday into #GivingDecember. No act of kindness is too small. Here we go:
1) Volunteer your time to Meals on Wheels, a local animal shelter, a homeless shelter, or any local organization. Trust me, especially during this time, they need the help.
2) Instead of buying presents for others, offer to do them a favor. Maybe your brother needs his house cleaned? Merry Christmas! Maybe your mom needs some help organizing some paper work? Merry Christmas! Maybe your sister needs her wash done? Merry Christmas! Ask your loved ones, "what can I do for you to help out?" Everyone appreciates a favor, and they never go out of style.
3) When people ask what you want, tell them, in lieu of presents, take whatever money they were going to spend on your present, and ask them to donate it to your favorite organization.
4) If you have the time, money, means, and responsibility- adopt a shelter pet! A pet is the absolute best gift you could ever give to yourself, and to them. Often times I wonder, when I look at my fur babies, who rescued who? When I'm sad, they're there for me. When they lay on my lap, snuggle up next to me, and give me kitty kisses, they make my heart full of joy. A pet's love is unconditional. You don't find that often in this world.
5) Look at the children in your life. How many toys do they have? The ones in my life have like 9 billion. Get them something small, but instead, open an account for them, and for every holiday and birthday, whatever money you we're going to spend on them, put it in that account. When they're older and they pursue their career goals, they're going to appreciate those funds for college or trade school. I promise you. I wish I had that in my life.
6) I know if you look in your closet, you have more clothes than you wear. Donate them!
7) There's Toys for Tots and collection boxes for jackets/gloves/scarves to help those less fortunate than yourself.
8) Have a potluck with friends and/or family, and just spend quality time together. Memories made are cherished, and less forgotten than that sweater you could've bought them. Start a new tradition with this, and even if you've got friends and/or family that don't look forward to this time of year (it has the highest rate of suicide amongst the entire year), this will give them something to look forward to every year.
9) Never underestimate the joy a homemade present or card bring. You don't need to spend tons of money to make others happy.
10) Above all else, be nice to others. Giving the gift of politeness, compliments, smiles, and joy can make a world of difference to everyone. Everyone is going through their own battle, and sometimes all it takes is a smile to change that person's day.
As I've said before, be the person your pet thinks you are. If you live your life by that sentiment, you'll turn #GivingTuesday into #Giving December, and into #GivingEveryday in no time.
Happy Holidays, my friends!