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We would say happy Black Friday, but a day filled with fighting over electronics and waiting in long lines isn’t our idea of a good time. 😉

What is? Doing something good this season. 

We’re not talking about buying your mom the sweater she’s been eyeing, or your sister that cozy robe that screams hygge. Nope, we’re suggesting you give the ultimate meaningful gift: Your time, spent volunteering.

Now, the next few weeks may be jam-packed with holiday parties, but it’s worth carving out at least a bit of time for do-goodery. Not only does giving back help people in need (or the environment, depending on what you do), it also brings joy to your own life, research shows.

And while it’s good to volunteer no matter the time of year, it seems like around the holidays it makes an even bigger impact. Who wouldn’t want to give the gift of a happier season?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed about what good deed you can do, here are some ideas, to help you tap into your giving spirit.

1.  Start a toy drive at your office. Set out the biggest box you can find, and send out an email to your coworkers, inviting them to take part. Then, deliver the gifts to a nearby shelter, or a place like your local Toys for Tots drop-off location.

2. Invite a neighbor who seems lonely over for cookies and coffee. You probably won’t have the same type of convo as you would with your best friend, but the chit-chat will provide some much-needed connection for your neighbor.

3.  Find a local soup kitchen or food bank in your town, and reach out about volunteering. They may need you to serve meals, or help with food drop-offs. And if you don’t have time for anything formal, consider putting together plastic bags of things like new socks, a water bottle and granola bars, and giving them directly to homeless people in town.

4.  Take a walk in your neighborhood with a bag handy so you can pick up any trash. You’ll make your block sparkle, and every time you walk or drive by, you’ll get a little pride knowing you contributed to that.

5.  Do a quick pass through your closet and see what items you can donate, then drop them off at Goodwill, Salvation Army or your nearest donation drop-off center. An extra bonus: donations are tax-deductible!

Feeling good about all this giving-back? Consider keeping it up all year. Because who doesn’t want to feel the love 12 months long?

Happy giving, Savvy!

 

Quote du Jour

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” — Winston Churchill

 

Savvy Tip

Giving your family and friends cookies this year? Instead of delivering them on a paper plate, try this trick: Take an empty (and cleaned out) Pringles canister, and wrap the outside in your favorite gift wrap. (We’re loving this plaid paper for an extra festive feel.)

Next, put your first cookie in a muffin tin liner, then place it at the bottom of the canister, and layer on more muffin tin liners and cookies on top of that. To cap it off, tape a bow on top of the lid, and voila! You’re ready to deliver some cheer.

 

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