3 ways to give back without spending money

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happy friday!

i wanted to take a minute to share a few of my favorite ways to give back during the holiday season, and i wanted to specifically share things that come at no cost to you. we all know that the holiday season can be expensive, and not every young person has the disposable income to donate to multiple non-profits.

while cash donations are usually the most effective (or at least the most preferred), there are other ways to get involved and give back and i wanted to share a few of them with you.

3 ways to give back without spending a dime

1. donate..

- blood, or sign up to be an organ donor. good health is absolutely invaluable, and if you can help someone else, they would be more appreciative than you can even imagine.

- clothes, old technology (like phone), appliances, or anything you don’t need anymore (especially cold-weather stuff)

- your miles to charity. you can do this via Make-a-Wish, or some airlines have their own programs, like American and JetBlue.

2. volunteer your time.

whether it’s at the YMCA, your local animal shelter, a food kitchen, elderly residences, or somewhere else I haven’t mentioned, spend an hour or two volunteering and giving back to your community. the holiday season is busy, but you absolutely won’t regret the time you spend volunteering (and you may even find that it re-energizes you in the process)

only have a few minutes to spare? in my most recent truth talk, stephanie mentioned how helpful it is when you share the social media posts of non-profits and charities, so follow + spread the word.

3. be nice!

i know this sounds so simple and almost like it shouldn’t even be on a list but hear me out.. the golden rule might be to “treat others as they treat you,” but even the good rules need amendments sometimes. treat others nicely, even if they don’t treat you the best, because you don’t always know what they’re going through. christmas time isn’t always a cheerful season for everyone. if you come across someone who seems grumpy or in a bad mood, still try to give them the benefit of the doubt because you never know their backstory, or what has happened to them. while there is no excuse for the people who park stupid (sorry, not going to lie), we really don’t know what others are going through and we honestly might just be catching them in a bad moment. so try to be nice :)

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and a few bonus ideas i just thought of...

if you’re already buying gifts on Amazon, switch over to AmazonSmile and pick a charity to give back to. this is something you can do that doesn’t cost you anything, aside from what you were already planning on spending on the things you’re buying (more on that here). or choose to buy gifts from stores that give back - i’ve talked about some of my favorites all year long here.

write letters to soldiers + veterans - the need for human connection never goes away, wartime or not. i lovedddd doing this as a kid and i’m sure the soldiers who receive the letters love it just as much, if not more.

be a good neighbor - since a lot of people go away for the holidays, if you’re home, offer to keep an eye on their house, or take out their trash barrels. i have lived in apartments where i never even saw my neighbors and definitely wish i made more of an effort to reach out. now that i live in a house again, i have some really great neighbors! and if you’ve ever seen the show “fear thy neighbor,” you know that’s something to appreciate :)

happy holidays ♥️ x

ps: just for full disclosure.. i literally ran away from a neighbor the other day so don’t think i am some perfect saint. i was out on a walk and she stopped to say hi to me two separate times (she is older) and each time told her i didn’t have much time to talk. so when she approached me for the third time i literally smiled, waved, and took off jogging. feel free to judge that. just keeping it realllll 🙃