As we all know, the new year is a great chance to set goals and make plans to improve our lives in a variety of ways. Some of us vow to get up a bit earlier for a jog, and others pledge to spend less than we earn and set aside some money for savings. All of these are great ideas and are sure to make your life much better and happier.
But have you ever considered setting some New Year’s goals to improve the lives of others? Sure, you could still take that mile-long jog every day, but what if you shifted some of that focus to the needs of other people — people who are looking for a bit of help.
Here are some tips that will help you make 2017 your most selfless and service-oriented year yet!
Organize Your Own Service Efforts
Have you ever been driving down the street and thought to yourself “I really want to start a coat drive” or “I have a few extra pairs of shoes I could donate”? Well, if you have, you’re off to a great start!
As you know, we’re in the thick of winter, and people are still in need of warm coats and shoes — and will be for another few months. You could be the one to help them out with the things they are in need of. Organizations such as One Warm Coat and Soles4Souls help mobilize volunteers so that those in need can get coats and shoes.
Pick a Service Opportunity That’s Important to You
There are service opportunities all over the place — places such as soup kitchens, senior centers and hospitals. But because there are so many opportunities, it may be somewhat difficult to choose where to start.
Start with what you’re passionate about. If you are interested in helping out at the local animal shelter, you can volunteer to take the dogs out on walks. Maybe you’re an avid outdoorsman. Volunteer your time once a month to help clean up and beautify local campgrounds or see what you can do to lend a hand at state and national parks.
The possibilities are endless, and when you’re engaged in service that benefits something where your interests lie, it may even make for a fun time!
Work with Community Initiatives
Putting together and organizing a service initiative all by yourself may seem like a daunting task, so maybe working with an already-established organization will be more your speed. Websites like JustServe.org, VolunteerMatch.org, UnitedWay.org and CreateTheGood.org can help you locate service opportunities in your area where you can serve, meet other people and really make a difference.
Habitat for Humanity is also a great organization that’s always looking for volunteers. In communities all across the country, Habitat for Humanity builds homes for families in need, giving them the foundation they need to live happy and healthy lives. By volunteering to help build these homes, you are providing shelter and giving people a chance at a great life.
Here at Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, we talk a lot about goodness, but we think that goodness extends beyond delicious food and hand-crafted drinks. Goodness consists of how we live our lives and how we treat each other. There’s no better way to really make a lasting impact on ourselves and on other people than by being more service oriented.
Find ways to help out around the community and benefit the lives of others. We think that’s what goodness is all about.