It’s the season of giving, and also a time to reflect on the things that we are most grateful for. Throughout the year, there are people who make our everyday lives run a little smoother. It could be those close to us, but also, often in the background, there are near-strangers whose work makes all the difference.
Around Christmas, the pressure often amps up for service workers, and amongst the festivities, stress levels can peak. Shops are crammed, deliveries pile up, and everywhere we go there seems to be an extra ‘buzz’ reverberating below the surface.
Here, we’re exploring four acts of kindness to help you give back.
How often do we take the time to tell people how we really feel? Especially when it comes to offering words of affirmation to people we only casually interact with. So often, the small things that make a big difference go unnoticed, but now’s the time to bring them to light.
Maybe it’s a refuse collector who takes time to wave to the children on your road (or occasionally knocks on the door when you’ve forgotten it’s bin day), a window cleaner who leaves the glass glittering, or a bus driver who welcomes you aboard each morning – whatever it may be, taking some time to put your gratitude into words in a card will never go amiss, and you can be sure that it will be treasured and appreciated.
These days, reviews can go a long way – to the point where they can make or break a business. And the unfortunate truth is people often make more effort to say something negative, than they do to praise a good job. But if someone has gone above and beyond for you, or even if they simply always do a good job, really do consider leaving them a review. It doesn’t cost a thing, and most businesses have a Facebook, Google review, or Trustpilot page where you can leave a review quickly and easily.
If you want to provide feedback on a particular individual who is part of an organisation – such as a postal worker or bus driver – consider visiting the organisation’s website, and putting in a good word via feedback or contact forms. You never know how much impact your words could have, this winter and beyond.
Whether it’s a box of chocolates, some homemade jam, festive treats, or simply a tip popped in a card, it goes without saying that gifts are always appreciated. You may be able to hand it over to them in person – or, if you’re out, is there a safe place where you can leave it, clearly labelled for them?
There’s a wealth of research into the psychology of gift-giving, and what studies find time and again is that, when it comes to the perfect present, the cost of the item has very little to do with it. So, if passing on a gift to someone who has brightened your day this year is something you’d like to do, don’t feel as though you need to splash out – it really is the thought that counts, and letting someone know that you see and appreciate them is truly at the heart of this gesture.
“So often, we can interact with people all the time, but fail to actually make a connection”
So often, we can interact with people all the time, but fail to actually make a connection. How often do we pass the same people by when going about our daily lives, all the while not knowing even the smallest of details about who they are?
It might be time to make introductions, even asking someone’s name and introducing yourself and your family will take the relationship you have to the next level. And there’s no need to make a big deal about it, a simple, “I’ve never caught your name?” is all it takes.
Take time to really see people, and nurture a sense of community and kindness this year, and beyond. ‘Tis the season, after all.
To connect with a life coach, or to learn more about building connections, visit lifecoach-directory.org.uk
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