Paying It Forward

I am only one, but I am one.  I cannot do everything, but I can do something.  And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do ~ Edward Everett Hale
In honor and memory of each of the Sandy Hook Elementary School students taken from this Earth far, far too soon, here are 20 suggestions for ways we can perhaps try to send love out into the universe and pay it forward, if just a little bit. It may not be much, but I think even the tiniest things can sometimes make the biggest difference...
  1. Have you just finished a great book? Leave it in a cafe with a note attached: "Whoever finds this, please take it home and enjoy. It's a great read."
  2. Talking about cafes, perhaps the next time you're driving through Starbucks, leave a few extra dollars for the car behind you. (This is great for any drive-through, toll booth, movie line, etc.)
  3. If you're shoveling, why not do the neighbor's walk, too?
  4. Let a car or two merge in front of you...
  5. The next time you're at an airport, offer to pull bags off the conveyor belt for someone who looks like they need help.
  6. Drop off coats/blankets/mittens to a local church or homeless shelter.
  7. Tip your waiter or waitress twice as much as you normally would.
  8. Smile at everyone you see today. :o)
  9. Send flowers anonymously to someone you know who could use cheering up.
  10. Practice compassion, no matter how difficult, with someone who's recently upset you.
  11. Say "Thank you" to the next teacher, first responder, military person you meet.
  12. Open the door for someone (or some two)...
  13. Call a relative or friend you haven't spoken to in a while. Ask them how they are, and really listen.
  14. Drop off a stuffed animal at your local police station for a traumatized child.
  15. Bring in treats for your office mates.
  16. Leave negativity out of any and all social media. (Instead, spread positivity. I have several friends who continually spread hopeful messages via social media, and I'm so grateful for them.)
  17. Donate. Your time, your help, clothing, money, blood, food... Whatever it is you have to give is perfect.
  18. Have your children draw colorful pictures (or paint/draw your own!), and drop them off at a local hospital or convalescent home to hang in their windows.
  19. Be nice to customer service reps.
  20. Bring hot chocolate to cold road crew workers; lemonade to hot ones; doughnuts to a police station; balloons to hospital patients...
I would love to hear more ideas on how to pay it forward. If you get a moment, please let me know how you've sent your good thoughts and gentle blessings out into the universe.

Love to you, kind readers. So much love.


Swedish Jenn said…
Love this Jen! Joe and I had a "giving to others" day yesterday where we dropped off leftover food from our Christmas party to a local shelter and then went to the nearest dollar store to purchase gifts he picked out for our family. I will take him out this week to buy two toys for the children at the shelter for Christmas. I have decided that we will 'adopt' this shelter so that Joe can get to know the facility and truly understand the plight of these families. And not just around the holidays, but once every couple of months for as long as we're living in the area. This little boy of mine is so blessed to have such loving and generous family that it's easy for him to lose appreciation for all he is given. This helps both of us feel grateful and be humbled. xo
You are awesome. What a lovely list! If you don't mind I will do a bloggy link up with you to share your thoughtful post. XOXO Merry Christmas honey! ~Shannon
Sandi D said…
Where I live at least a quarter of the cars have offensive bumper stickers (promoting violence against race, sex, weight, language etc). So I had a custom sticker made that simply reads "Be Excellent To One Another" (from Bill & Ted- but sage advice none the less). I have had so many people give me the thumbs up, smile and wave, and otherwise congratulate me on having such a great sticker. It's not a big deal, it's very simple- and yet so many people appreciate the reminder, and so many others like seeing that they aren't alone in spreading a bit of sunshine.

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