Friday, May 09, 2008

Thursday 13...(on Friday) How to be a "professional" Do-Gooder".

Yes, I do realize it is Friday but I wanted to do this yesterday but never got around to it. So, here I go.

Earlier this week a coworker was talking to a landlord of a client. The landlord said something about "Professional Renters". Meaning a renter that works the system. Now I call him the "Professional" Landlord. I guess that makes me a "Professional" Do-Gooder. I like that. Today I am going to give you 13 things you can do to be a Do-Gooder.

1. Smile, Say Hello and Tell people to have a good day. Just being friendly to strangers in general can be BIG.

2. Get to know your neighborhood "bum". Most towns have them. Chances are the person has a heart wrenching story and sadly enough, a mental illness. Maybe buy him/her a cup of coffee or a bag of chips. I know who our town person is...I don't know if he is homeless - that isn't really a good conversation starter but I know his name and I do know he has a mental illness. He has talked to me several times at Goodwill and yesterday at Circle K.

3. Donate food. This is probably the easiest thing you can do. Most grocery stores all over the United States have a food collection barrel somewhere near the entrance or exit of the store. I know very few people who can't afford to buy at least a can of corn and toss it in. If you shop with coupons you probably can get something for free. Check out for details. The woman who runs it started a "Cut out Hunger" campaign. How cool is that? I heard this guy Rob Bell say "don't pray for the hungry if you have food in your pantry" (or something like that). It is true.

4. Give your free CVS stuff to an agency that helps people.

5. Help a working family. I'd almost bet you know a working family that is in need of something. Because of our "middle class" values (pull yourself up by your bootstraps and don't ask for help) many people don't ask for help when they really need it. Don't wait until they ask. Maybe give them a gift card, babysit for free, pay a utility bill anonymously....

6. Suspend all JUDGMENT. This is probably the most important and the most difficult. Remember, we aren't supposed to judge others. Do you think in the Bible, Jesus asked the blind beggar for an ID and to fill out a bunch of papers before helped him? Do you think he asked him if he ate out for dinner the night before or if he had cable? Did he ask him if he had any bad habits? When we do those things we are being judgmental. We aren't supposed to judge. I know it is a hard one but think about it.

7. Pick up trash when you see it on the ground.

8. Be vigilant. Watch what is going on around you. I just watched this special on TV - I think it was 20/20. They set up scenarios and record how people react. They put this kid on a sidewalk and he was crying and asking for help. HUNDREDS of people walked right by him and didn't even look his way. Some did look and kept walking. Pay attention people.

9. And that leads to this one...Don't be afraid to help. Now, don't put yourself in danger but you can take a minute of time to help a crying kid for heavens sake.

10. Give compliments. Lots & lots of compliments. I have been working on this for a while. I know this one girl and she is always saying the nicest things to people. She always told me how pretty I looked while I was pregnant and always complimenting something. It is so nice and always makes me feel good when she says such nice things.

11. Write a letter, send a card, leave a voicemail and let someone know you are thinking about them.

12. Think outside the box. Check out the web. There are tons of web sites with many ideas of how to help others. Get inspired that will definitely get the ball rolling.

13. Practice Random Acts of Kindness. You guys have heard about these things. Pay for car behind you in the McDonalds line or turnpike....there are so many ways to be kind.

Well, that is my list. Keep telling me what you think about my last post. Next week I am really going to respond.

Kindness is the only service that will stand the storm of life and not wash out. It will wear well and will be remembered long after the prism of politeness or the complexion of courtesy has faded away.
- Abraham Lincoln

1 comment:

Daily Panic said...

I like that-"Pro Do gooder"
nice and informative list. True, there is some good each of us can do daily.
I heard something the other day where Oprah prays that God will use her. I think she prayed that in a BIG way and is getting Big results.