You don’t have to be Superwoman to be a good human. Usually, it just means putting in a little extra effort to look out for others and make people feel good. Here are 15 quick, but meaningful things you can do today, to be an even better human (because, let’s face it — if you’re reading this, you’re probably already pretty fantastic).
1. Put your cart back. Instead of leaving it stranded in a parking spot, take the extra 30 seconds to walk it back to the designated cart area.
2. Bring breakfast for your co-workers. A dozen bagels or donuts probably won’t break the bank, but will certainly perk up a morning at work. Bonus points? Go in early and hand-deliver them. It will give you a chance to have a brief, but memorable connection with each person, especially the ones you don’t often see.
3. Leave positive notes. Whether it be a post-it on your spouse’s computer with something you adore about them or a a brief, “go get ’em tiger!” in your kid’s lunchbox, leaving notes is an easy way to share love, even when you’re not there.
4. Say “thank you.” Mean it.
5. Call a friend or family member you haven’t caught up with in awhile. One of my close friends called me out-of-the-blue a few weeks ago and, admittedly, my first thought was, “is something wrong?” Nope. He just wanted to see how I was doing, which meant a whole lot. You have the power to build and revive relationships each and everyday — use it!
6. Say hello when you see your neighbors. I mean, you have to see them all the time anyways, so you might as well make it awesome.
7. Thank cashiers and service people by using the name on their name-tag. My dad does this every time we go out, and I always see the way it makes even the most worn-out cashier perk up a little brighter. We feel recognized and understood when people use our names.
8. Tell your boss that they’re doing a great job. It might seem like the person highest up the totem pole gets the most praise, but really, it can get lonely at the top. Many of the bosses I’ve had were elated and wholly surprised when I told them that they were doing a kick-butt job of leading. Just because they’re a leader doesn’t mean they know how much they rock.
9. Clean up small messes in public eateries. Does the cream + sugar area of your local coffee shop have a few spills from previous customers? Take a napkin and wipe ’em up. It’ll only take you a few seconds, but might mean a lot to busy baristas and coffee-goers.
10. Listen. Sometimes this is all people need. Give them that.
11. Open doors for people. And on that note, glance behind yourself when you go through a door to make sure you’re not accidentally slamming it on the person behind you.
12. Spread gossip…in a kind way. When you hear something kind about a friend, tell them! The other day, my 10-year-old sister was raving about how our brother taught her how to play chess, and what a great teacher he was. I told my brother about her compliments the next time I saw him and he was genuinely happy, telling me that it gave him the extra boost of confidence he needed for a mentoring program he was just about to start.
13. Pick up litter and toss it in the trash. Did someone throw their empty bag of chips on the ground? Just pick it up. Throw it away. You’re a superhero, remember?
14. Support someone. Whether it be a co-worker going through a loss or a friend who’s nervous about starting her own business — let them know that you’re there for them. And in the case of the latter, telling your friend that you support their crazy ideas will go a long way to help make them happen.
15. Put in a good word. Is the lady who always rings up your Caramel Macchiato pretty much the sweetest girl around? Or was your server at dinner totally hilarious and helpful? Tell their manager how much they rocked your world. A little goes a loooong way.
What good will you do today?
p.s. 9 Ways to Make Someone’s Day + 30 Ways to Feel Like You Accomplished Something Today