Sometimes it’s easy to forget that the world is full of good people and that there are countless ways we can do nice things for those around us. Fortunately, National Do Something Nice Day serves as an excellent reminder to show kindness and make someone else’s day a little bit brighter.
Make a Donation to a Charity
Donating to charity is a major mood-booster. Research shows that it increases activity in the areas of your brain associated with pleasure, proving that as the old saying goes, it really is better to give than to receive.
Businesses that routinely donate to charity can reap a number of benefits, including improved customer loyalty. However, it is important to make sure you choose a charitable organization that aligns with your business’ values and reflects the needs of your local community.
Avoid charities that make vague sentimental claims without specifics about how donations are used. And be especially wary of any fundraiser that asks for a wire transfer or offers sweepstakes winnings in exchange for your donation. These are often signs of scams. Also, always check that a charitable organization is registered with your state’s regulator.
Bring Food to Share
When someone you know is going through a tough time, bringing food to them can be really helpful. It shows you care and that you are thinking of them.
It’s not uncommon for parties and gatherings to ask guests to bring a dish to share. That way everyone can enjoy a delicious meal without the host having to do all the work.
If you have a friend who is sick or busy and can’t cook, a gift card to their favorite restaurant or even just Starbucks could help them get some nourishment in their day. Another option is to organize a meal train for them. There are some great sites out there like MealTrain to make it super easy. They can schedule meals for the entire family or just one person at a time.
Take a Friend to Lunch
When friends are coping with illness, grief or a major life change, meals delivered with love and grace are an emotional salve more powerful than many prescription drugs. But it can be difficult to navigate the logistics of meal sharing—what should you bring, how long should you wait to drop it off?
When you invite a friend to lunch, make it clear that you expect her to be there for the entire meal. If she’s too busy to join you, leave a meal for her freezer. If she needs to stay home with a sick child, ask her to let you know before delivering it. And never assume that your friend enjoys washing dishes—she probably doesn’t. And if she does, be sure to bring paper plates!
Give a Friend a Book
Bookish gifts are a great way to show your friends that you’re thinking about them. Gifts like this are especially nice for someone who’s going through a rough patch or is trying to find meaning in a new circumstance.
Give them a funny memoir that makes them laugh or a suspenseful murder mystery that keeps them hooked for days. Or get them a complex fantasy that has multiple intertwining plotlines.
Books make thoughtful gifts for people of all ages, and they often go well with heartfelt notes to accompany them. Whether they’re a holiday gift, a birthday present, or a retirement present for a loved one, a thoughtful book can leave a lasting impression on someone you care about. A good book can help you and your friends forge strong connections over time.