Today I decided to add something to this site. I said I want to use this site to make "Life In The Cuse" better for all and today I am adding a section called Kindness In The Cuse. I plan to use this area to share local stories of people helping others as well as ways we can help others ourselves. I will share them from any and all local media outlets or social media posts so that people can see the good happening as well.
For years, I have heard so many negative comments about people in Syracuse being miserable, mean, selfish and other not so nice qualities. The truth is that while maybe some people can be these things, there are people everywhere like this and I also believe there are many in the area who are just as kind as elsewhere as well. Some watch the news or read other media and they see crime reported as news and think the worst, especially about life in the city and I want to use my voice to remind people it is not all doom and gloom.
So I wanted to start off myself with a post about ways we can all (including myself) do better to make life easier or more tolerable and enjoyable for others. People always talk about wanting to win the lottery or make a lot of money so they can help others but I truly believe that even the smallest acts of kindness can help make someone's day better and as the video shows above, sometimes it can be contagious as well. Here are 4 simple things we can do to help make a difference towards others that do not require a lot of money:
1. Hold A Door, Return A Shopping Cart Or Let A Car Out
I know often times we are in a hurry but have you ever noticed that often times we are in such a hurry that we do so at the expense of others? Often times, others are in a hurry too or have had a really bad day. I have noticed how nice it feels when someone takes a few minutes to do basic things like hold the door or return your shopping cart to the store or cart area or just let you out in busy traffic. Once while at Aldi's, I noticed a mom with three kids who had her hands full and as she finished putting her groceries in her car, I thought I would help by taking her cart back so she would not have to leave her children unattended...sometimes we all can use a helping hand.
Just take a few minutes if you can and if you see someone you can help because you never know how much they much need it or at least appreciate it. I know most of us have had long days and we are in a hurry but if we just sometimes take a breath and realize others did too and we could help them and ourselves if we were just a bit nicer towards them.
2. Vending Machine/Drive Thru Line
Do you have a vending machine at your job or school that you use often? Next time you use it and you realize you have enough money, why not leave the money in the machine for the next person? It's like winning a mini lottery when you realize you don't have to pay and most times it will only cost you maybe $1-$2 at most. Mom was in the hospital in December and you see some people at their worst during those moments so a few times when I went to get a Mountain Dew, I would put enough money in there for the next person as well.
If you have a bit more money, next time you go through a drive-thru at a restaurant, ask if you can pay for the car behind you as well. I once talked to someone who said that when someone did this, multiple cars actually participated and it not only helped the person behind them but also made the cashier at the window smile.
3. Be Polite
Speaking of drive-thru windows, have you ever said please and thank you at a drive-thru? I get it...it's their job but we all want to be appreciated for doing out jobs and it can make a big impact for some who might be having a long day. Words can make a big difference and sometimes we should take a breath before talking to others and think about how we would want others to treat us.
Don't you like it when your boss tells you that you did a good job or someone thanks you for helping? Often times we are quick to lash out when things go wrong but it seems to be forgettable to appreciate those who do their jobs right or who make you feel good. Words may not physically hurt others but they can impact our moods and our life. It's not too PC to use manners or even initiate kindness simply by relating to someone on a friendly level.
4. Volunteer To Help A Neighbor Or Cause
As caregiver of a mom with Alzheimer's, often I do a lot to try and raise awareness because I don't have the money to help fund cures or other causes related to it. I try my best to relate my experiences so people know what is going on. I also know as caregiver how much it means to do something for someone else and it does make you feel better about yourself as well as for them. Maybe you have a neighbor who could use a hand with something like cutting their grass or trash or a cause you feel strongly about that you can volunteer in some way to assist. Maybe there is a local hospital, senior center, or other kind of facility that could use a hand with something...many times we see in the media that these places are short handed on staff.
I know many people work a lot, they have family and other priorities in life they have to tend to but maybe you can find a way to fit something in your schedule to help those who you think might need it or benefit from your help. On this site, there are a list of many local organizations that help the community as well. Watch this video below of Syracuse Orange legend Brittney Sykes taking just a little time out of her day to make this fan feel special...I have seen it several times and I love it.