Hello friends! Today I’m honored to have a guest post on Cait Flanders’ wonderful, eponymous blog. She’s formerly known as Blonde on a Budget, is half of the Rockstar Finance team, and co-hosts the delightful Budgets & Cents podcast. Please hop on over there and give it a read: The Woods, Mountains and Happiness Within.
The post is all about happiness, which is something that’s on our minds a lot lately, and just generally all the time, because happiness is awesome.
As we often discuss here, a big component of happiness is gratitude. Those of us pursuing early retirement or any variation of financial independence have mucho to be grateful for. And how can we boost that happiness even more? By giving back in some way.
Seriously, if gratitude = happiness, turning that gratitude into action that helps others = super ultra mega happiness.
So today, a quick rundown of five ways you can make a difference. Not at some theoretical future date that we may never get around to, but right this very second. Go do one or more of these things, read the post over at Cait’s, and then let us know what ways you like to make a difference in the comments. xoxo
Join the Bone Marrow Donor Registry — Many people in need of bone marrow transplants to treat their life-threatening cancers can’t find a donor with a matching tissue type. Sign up for the BeTheMatch registry in the U.S. or the OneMatch registry in Canada to increase the chances that seriously ill patients can get the transplants that may save their lives. There’s no obligation to do anything just because you’re on the registry, and the odds that you’ll match someone one day are low. But if more of us do this, many more people will have longer, healthier lives.
Give Blood — Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. Though there are still some ridiculous rules in place that prevent gay men from donating blood, most healthy people are able to donate every two months. Find a blood drive or make an appointment to give today via the American Red Cross or the Canadian Blood Services.
Help Cure Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s While You Sleep — Researchers at Stanford are searching for a cure for Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and many cancers through computational research that requires huge amounts of computing power. You can sign up at the Folding Project site (and download a piece of software) that lets them borrow your unused computing power while your computer sits unused. More than 80,000 people around the world are already participating.
Use Your Professional Skills to Help Nonprofits — We all have skillz we use at work that we could put to use for a good cause. Catchafire lets you match your skills with needs in the nonprofit sector — for example, designing a brochure or writing a business plan — all for worthy organizations helping to make the world better.
Volunteer — And, of course, there’s always getting out there and making a difference in your local community by volunteering. If you need inspiration, Volunteer Match can help you find organizations in your area that need your help.
…and one more bonus action… Be Kind. The world can be a hard place, so let’s all do our part to make it a little softer. That’s all. :-)