Do you know someone who may be hurting this holiday season? Reach out with one of these five tangible ways you can make their season a little brighter.
Buy an Extra Turkey or Tree
The week before Thanksgiving this year, I saw something really cool happening on a couple community Facebook pages I belong to. There were people saying they had purchased an extra turkey, and wanted to give it to someone in the community who needed it. Every time, within an hour or two, a grateful person had connected with the giver and received a turkey they otherwise wouldn’t have had. It was really cool to see this happening, and it made me realize how this little act of kindness could go such a long way.
If you have extra funds available this year, consider buying an extra item to give to someone in your area. You could contact a local church to see if they had any members who could use a little holiday cheer, or you could even just buy an extra small tree and leave it with a “FREE TREE IF YOU NEED” sign in a parking lot or residential street. You may not get to see the person’s reaction, but you can certainly be assured that whoever gets your holiday gift will appreciate it that year.
Reach Out to Those Who’ve Lost
Death is never a fun topic, and many times, those of us who haven’t gone through the loss of someone close are apprehensive to bring up the subject with those who have. I have a close friend whose 20-year-old son passed away a couple years ago, and she has helped me learn so much about the importance of NOT pretending like it didn’t happen. My friend has taught me that having others ignore the fact that she is hurting doesn’t make the hurt go away. Likewise, having others bring up the loss doesn’t make the pain worse because there is no pain worse than the loss itself. It actually helps when she knows that others are helping her remember the good about her son.
This holiday season, think back to the last year and try to remember if anyone has lost someone important to them. Maybe it was a child, a close friend, a spouse, or a parent. If they have, reach out to that person—by phone, email, card, or in person, and let them know that you are thinking about them as they adjust to the holidays without their loved one. They may want to talk, but they may not. Just letting them know that you remember the person they love and lost will likely help them, even if it brings a round of tears.
All these ideas are things you can do throughout the year, but they can have an especially big impact during the holidays. Emotionally hurting throughout the year is tough enough, but being in pain when the rest of the world seems to be happy and festive is especially hard. Taking a few hours during the holiday season to reach out to others can have an impact bigger than you can imagine.
Until next time, I’m the Domestic CEO. Please let me know on Facebook what you're doing this holiday season to help others.