These days, most of our lives have moved onto “screens.” We spend our time on Zoom calls, Facetime, and social media. We bypass visiting our local stores for ordering stuff online. The changes wrought by the pandemic have only exacerbated this extended “social distance” habit. But humans are pack animals and community is crucial. The connections contribute to our mental and physical health as well as vibrant neighborhoods. So here are some simple ways to reconnect.
WELCOME A NEWCOMER
Make it a point to welcome a new neighbor. Drop by with a cake or bottle of wine, and perhaps a list of helpful phone numbers (yours included).
WRITE A POSITIVE REVIEW
Local businesses always appreciate good word-of-mouth. Write a nice “Yelp” review or spread the word on platforms like Nextdoor.
GET FIRST AID CERTIFIED
Being able to help out in an emergency is a great skill to have. Take some time to learn the basics – especially CPR.
DONATE SUPPLIES TO A SCHOOL
It’s well-known that schools struggle to fund the endless need for classroom supplies. Many teachers pay out of their own pocket. Help pick up the slack by donating yourself or organizing a local drive.
MAKE YOUR SHOPPING GO FURTHER
Some search engines will donate to good causes with every purchase or search. Amazon Smile, for example, donates a portion of your purchase to your favorite non-profit organization.
The folks who bring us our meals, serve up a beer, deliver our packages or give us a ride are working harder than ever. Tipping well is one way to brighten their hard-working day.
ATTEND LOCAL MEETINGS
While most of us are aware of the big national political happenings, change really starts at the local level. Get involved – or at least be present – with the important decisions being made in your community.
LEAVE A HAPPY SURPRISE
Next time you’re at your local convenience store, slip a dollar bill (or more) into the pages of a newspaper. Imagine how happy that stranger will be discovering it!
PRACTICE RANDOM ACTS OF KINDNESS
Pay for a stranger’s coffee. Take in a neighbor’s trash can or shovel their walk after a snowstorm. Get inspired at RandomActsofKindness.org and keep the positive vibes going.
VOLUNTEER (AT LEAST ONCE A MONTH)
There’s no better way to impact your community – or the world at large — than by helping out on a cause that you believe in. Start with VolunteerMatch.org, AllForGood.org, or DoSomething.org to find the perfect match for you.