How to Spread Joy to Others, Even During a Pandemic
You know the old saying: it’s better to give than to receive. That has never been truer than right now, in the middle of a soul-crushing, stress-inducing, global pandemic. What better way to combat all the awful things that are happening right now than with some wonderful, joyful things?
Here are a few ways that you can spread joy, even in a pandemic.
Oh, and I bet you’ll find some serious satisfaction in these acts, too.
Make Something, Then Share It
Are you a big baker? Does cooking calm your nerves? A great way for you to spread some joy is to make something and then share it! Whip up a big batch of cookies and deliver them to your family (masked and socially distanced). Spend all Saturday making trays of lasagna and leave them on your friend’s porches. Either way, you won’t be bored, and you’ll make someone smile. After all, who doesn’t love homemade treats?
Run for Charity
While large, official 5Ks aren’t possible this year, you can always do them on your own. Once a month (or more if you’re an overachiever), plan a timed run, dedicate it to a local charity, and make a donation once you complete it. There are tons of organizations looking for support, from schools and art museums to animal shelters and food banks. You can even go the extra mile (hehe) and send the charity a sweaty selfie with the donation.
Send Daily Doses of Cuteness
If you’re a proud pet parent, share the cuteness. Create a text thread with friends, family members, or coworkers who might need a pick-me-up and send them daily photos of your pet. You’ll stay connected, have something to do, and get to show off how adorable your little furball is.
Nurture Your Green Thumb
It’s hard to feel connected to people when you only see them through a screen. A shared activity can go a long way. Send someone you love a plant growing kit and buy the same one for yourself. Plant, water, and watch them grow together.
Connect with Your Neighbors
Not many people know their neighbors in normal times, especially in New York. Take the opportunity to make some connections that are literally close to home. Drop off little gifts or notes to your neighbors whenever you have a spare moment or an extra serving. Or, if you’re a people person, set up a weekly, socially distanced happy hour in the driveway, local park, or front stoop.
Snail mail is chic again. Choose a few people that might need some words of affirmation, like a grandparent in a nursing home or a friend who works in healthcare, and send them a weekly postcard. They’ll love the anticipation of checking their mail for a new note and you’ll have a blast getting creative with the cards and the messages.
Pay it Forward
Treating yourself to takeout? Next time you pick up food at a restaurant or go through a drive through, pay for the person behind you in line. You never know how much that small act will change a stranger’s life.