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Helping others when money is tight.
As we enter the season of giving, blessings and being thankful. One might wonder how you can help others when money is tight?
Charity and helping others is important not only on a global level, but a personal level. It breaks down the electronic, social walls and creates relationships between people. It allows us to show compassion and support for one another. To spread joy and happiness.
Helping someone in need not only show that individual that someone cares, it gives them grace and dignity and a helping hand.
You don’t need to shell out hundreds or thousands of dollars to help others. In fact you don’t even need to spend ten dollars.
21 Frugal ways to help others:
1. Hold the door open for someone.
It’s something so simple but so giving and it costs nothing but time. It maybe holding the door for an older person or a mom with a stroller or young children. Or maybe the person is carrying too much and just needs a hand. The action speaks way louder than words.
2. Help carry someone else’s parcels.
In the grocery store you are commonly asked do you need help carrying that to your car? If you see someone with too many parcels or trying to juggle young children and groceries offer to help carry something. It takes only a few moments of your time but it is extremely generous and helpful.
3. Offer to babysit a friends children.
No money changes hands, just time. I think the best thing one can do for a Mom is to watch her children so she can have some Mom time or simply take a nap.
4. Bake someone cookies.
If you are baking cookies, bake a few extra and share them with a neighbor or friend.
Lend a helping hand. Volunteer at your local soup kitchen or community event. Or volunteer to help a friend or neighbor.
6. Buy someone coffee.
Life is busy and this simplest act of kindness can go a long way. Have you ever gotten to the front of the line at the coffee shop and your coffee has been paid for already? Doesn’t it feel great? Buy a stranger a coffee.
7. Take a homemade meal to someone who is ill.
Making an extra meal portion or cooking some chicken soup takes very little time and money, but this act of generosity can help someone who is sick or cannot prepare a healthy meal themselves.
8. Send a thank you note or a note of encouragement.
This one goes a long way. In fact we sent thank you notes to each and every guest at our wedding, all hand written thanking them for being part of our big day. I got more responses to our thank you notes than I expected. People want to be valued, appreciated and communicated with. It may be old fashioned but a thank you note can go a long way in making someones day. The same goes for words of encouragement and love letters.
9. Give someone fresh flowers.
There is just something calming about fresh flowers. They are beautiful to look at, smell amazing and they energize a room. Whether you purchase a small bouquet or cut a few fresh flowers from the garden I am sure the recipient will appreciate them.
10. Send a thoughtful text message.
In the current day and age of text messages versus calling or talking. Take a step forward and send a thoughtful text message or one of encouragement.
11. Offer a coat or blanket to someone who is cold.
If you are out with friends and someone is chilly offer a coat or blanket. During the winter offer up old coats and blankets to those in need.
12. Be a good listener to someone in need.
We all want to be heard and appreciated. Be a good listener. This doesn’t mean answer questions or carry on a conversation. It means really listen and make sure the person you are with knows they are being heard.
13. Start the conversation and ask someone how their day was.
Life is so busy that sometimes we move from to do, to do or activity to activity and forget to stop and converse. Start a conversation, see how someone is doing. Ask your kids how their day was.
14. Donate food to the food bank.
A can of food or a package or noodles can go a long way for someone in need. It will cost you less than a dollar but it will feed the hungry.
15. Offer to help out at church or in your community.
It takes a village to raise a child and it takes volunteers to bless a church and community.
16. Give someone a smile or a hug.
A smile can go a long way in brightening someone’s day. Or give a hug or a hand shake. This simple interaction let’s others know they are appreciated.
17. Offer to shovel your neighbors driveway or walk the dog.
It costs nothing but time. During the winter offer to shovel the neighbors driveway or walkway or walk the dog. Something so simple but so helpful.
18. Invite someone over.
Everybody needs and wants to be included. Invite someone over for dinner. Open your home.
19. Cup and conversation.
Nothing says inclusion better than a good coffee and catch up with friends. Maybe you are looking for a cheap date night with your spouse, cup and conversation is perfect.
20. Give a small gift.
One year my sons teacher gave them end of the year gifts it was something so simple like pencils and stickers but it went a long way in showing appreciation and value to each student. It doesn’t even have to be a purchased gift it could be extra tomatoes from the garden or fresh baked cookies. A little gift to say hello, how are you.
21. Pay it forward and do something nice.
Little acts of kindness. Pay it forward and do something nice for someone else. It doesn’t have to be the holiday season to buy someone a coffee or a gift. Pay it forward all year. Treat others as you would want to be treated. It’s the simple little things that make the day.