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Giving Back by Paying it Forward

Updated on July 18, 2014
Giving Back and Paying it Forward...Little Things can Make a Big Difference.
Giving Back and Paying it Forward...Little Things can Make a Big Difference.

Giving Back in Our Day to Day...Simple & Profound

Most of us have our "close to our hearts" charities that we give our time and or money to, in the hopes of making a difference in the lives of others. We have "adopted" certain causes because they have touched our lives or the lives of those we care about. These are important and needed endeavors. But, sometimes we get involved in "big" causes and lose sight of the day to day lives we touch and how we can better impact those around us. Friends, family, neighbors and strangers can all be touched in a positive way. When we reach out a hand of kindness simply for the sake of kindness, with nothing expected in return, we enable those we touch to reach out and touch others. Like an interesting YouTube video can go "viral" by being shared exponentially, so too can random acts of kindness.

Below are some examples of what you can do. But, do not be limited by these ideas alone. Vise them as a springboard to get you started. Explore your abilities and your personal knowledge base to determine how you can reach out, pay it forward and give back. Make a difference, share a smile and be one of the good guys (or gals).

So Many of Us Rely on Our Daily Dose of Coffee...Pay it Forward by Paying for a Soldier's Cup of Joe.
So Many of Us Rely on Our Daily Dose of Coffee...Pay it Forward by Paying for a Soldier's Cup of Joe.

A Cup of Joe for GI Joe : The Coffee Factor

Many of us visit convenience stores on a regular basis; for some of us it is a daily occurrence. Coffee is the life blood of many of our days and we seek it 24oz. at a time at our local Wawa, 7-11 or Circle K. How do we turn this common act of caffeine consumption into an act of kindness?

The next time you are fueling up and you see a member of the U.S. Armed Forces in line with their beverage of choice...pick up the tab. This can be utilized with police officers, paramedics or any one easily recognizable as a "servant" of the people. Thank them for their service and say "I got this." Go as big or as small as you want with this...it could be a simple drink or an entire meal. If there is no visible public servant in line, then just randomly pay for someone's coffee. Tell them to pay it forward by doing something nice for someone else.

Coupons Save Us Money on Our Shopping Trips...Why Not Share the Savings.
Coupons Save Us Money on Our Shopping Trips...Why Not Share the Savings.

Shopping Cart Give Away : Coupon Kindness

If you are a coupon clipping connoisseur you probably have multiples of many of your coupons. When you are trekking up and down the isles and waiting in line at check out, you can help a fellow shopper in a very simple way. If you see that they have items in their cart that you have coupons for, you can simply give them the coupons. Say, "excuse me, but I noticed that you have product(s) A, B and C and I have extra coupons for them...here you go." When they thank you, ask them to pass it on...

Do you know someone who is a shut in or has a hard time getting out to go food shopping? Ask if you can go for them and in addition to getting their food for them you can utilize your coupons to help cut their cost. If you've figured out how to get stuff real cheap or for free, don't you think they would be thrilled with the same savings?

Find Your Area of Expertise (or at least competence) and Share with a Student to Help Them Excel...Tutor a Child (or adult)
Find Your Area of Expertise (or at least competence) and Share with a Student to Help Them Excel...Tutor a Child (or adult)

Educational Front : Tutor a Child

How many children struggle with one topic or another as they work their way through K-12? Many students have a weak topic of study and some may have it in a subject that you excel in. If one of your neighbors has a child that is struggling in your area knowledge, offer to tutor them for free. Some parents need, but can't afford, a tutor for their child. They may be single parents or just a family that is struggling for any one of many reasons. We, as a community, need to help each other reach our full potential as individuals. This can also be a way to help a single mom get her degree, so she can better provide for herself and her children. You can offer to proof-read reports, term papers and other writings associated with their education. You can teach math or science if that is your specialty. Any help could enable that one student to more fully reach their full potential.

Find Your Niche : Give of Your Time (and Money) according to Your Ability

Whatever you do in your daily life...wherever you go...give. It may be as simple as holding a door that extra few moments for an approaching stranger, raking leaves for a older or disabled neighbor or anything you can think to do. Be creative and see what you can do to make a person's life a little easier...or at least make them smile. Remember to do these acts of kindness without the expectation of receiving anything in return (except, hopefully, a smile) and ask the person to pay it forward. In doing so, we can make our communities better for everyone and we are teach our own children what being a good person and citizen looks like in action. We each can give and make our communities a nicer place to live.

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    • Mitch Alan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mitch Alan 

      4 years ago from South Jersey

      Amberdp, thanks for reading...glad you enjoyed them...

    • profile image

      amberdp 

      4 years ago

      I'm a huge believer in paying it forward! It just feels good to help nd be kind to people.

      It's been great reading your hubs, You have some great points and I love the variety of topics!

    • Mitch Alan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mitch Alan 

      5 years ago from South Jersey

      Sallybea,

      Thanks for reading...and for paying it forward...

    • sallybea profile image

      Sally Gulbrandsen 

      5 years ago from Norfolk

      This is a great Hub. I recall watching an old lady in a supermarket trying to decide which items she should put back because she did not have enough money to pay for everything. I paid for the things she could not pay for and I still remember how nice it made me feel to be able to do that. Voted up.

    • Mitch Alan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mitch Alan 

      5 years ago from South Jersey

      Jamie,

      Thanks for reading and sharing...we all need to do more of this.

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 

      5 years ago from Texas

      I love this... It brought to mind a hot day last summer when my husband and I were on our way home from visiting his grandmother about 45 min. away. The gas tank was on E and we pulled over to get gas and I dug for my wallet but it wasn't in my purse and he had just a few bucks on him. He went in to pay and I was worried because I knew there was a chance we may not even make it back home on that but to my surprise, he came out and said that he paid for the few dollars worth gas and then went to the bathroom and when he walked out the cashier told him to put 10.00 more in the tank, that the guy standing behind him in line paid 10.00 more for us. I almost cried.. if there was ever a time when we needed that it was then. Because of him, we didn't run out of gas in the blazing heat. I thanked God for him. I even wondered if he was an angel because there's no way he could have known that we were that low on gas. It's a beautiful thing and I definitely believe in paying it forward :0) Great hub!!

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