I know this probably seems like a superbly stupid post, particularly at this time of year - you probably all do small charitable things, but I think it's so easy at Christmas to get caught up in the me, me, me-ness of it all, to pour over gift-guides and get swept up in the twinkle of fairylights. This has most definitely been me, in years gone by, and I think you by no means should shun all things joyful at this time of year, but I do think everyone, myself included!, needs a gentle reminder to give something back.
I recently started working for a company that actively encourages us to do 2 days of charitable work a year, and I love that we're able to do this - I know that for some people, it's not always an option. I don't want to go into too much detail, for fear of it sounding like bragging or something similarly stupid, but through work, my team raised an amazing amount of money which was donated to a good local cause - decorating a local hospital ward for Christmas.
I famously have a cold heart, nothing really upsets me or penetrates my emotional barriers, haha, but even I sat in the car afterwards with tears in my eyes after managing to speak to a few of the patients there. Because lets face it, no-one enjoys being hospital, really, and I'm sure even less so at Christmas - so its nice to be able to bring a bit of cheer to somewhere not very cheerful.
When I was little, my mum often made my brothers and I help put together shoeboxes for a the Christmas Child appeal - which I used to enjoy for the rather superficial reasons of packing everything neatly into a box… And whilst religious things aren't everyone's cup of tea, there are small things you can do. Dump a bunch of change in a charity box, don't cross the street to avoid the collectors, buy some tinned soup and donate it to a local foodbank, pick up a pack of charity Christmas cards... I know not everyone is able to take a day off work to go and go all out, but there are small things you can do that can help a bit towards making a difference, and I think we all could all do with a reminder to try and help others.