The year is winding down and I have one simple reminder for you: VOLUNTEER even though things are about to get crazy! There are going to be pumpkin patches, baking, shopping, family, and a mess of obligations that you will need to fulfill before the end of the year. However, it is important to shuffle, organize, and prioritize your schedule so that you have time to give.
My friend Brett at This Mama Loves Her Bargains wrote an amazing Call to Action post about volunteering. One day we were on the telephone chatting and the topic of volunteering arose….I told her it would be a perfect blog post. When I read what she wrote I was moved. Here is a just a teaser of what she wrote:
Do you ever notice that the same people seem to volunteer and/or pitch in, to do what’s needed, to get things done, time after time? I am far from superwoman. I don’t have my hand in every cookie jar, and I don’t intend to….I spent the first of what will be many mornings helping out in the kids’ classes at school the other day. It got me thinking. Why don’t more people volunteer? Why don’t more folks help out?
My husband tells me over and over, and over again that I stretch myself too thin. Why do you put these things onto yourself? he wonders. Because someone has to, I reply, often with a bit of sass in my tone. I can’t bear the thought of kids not being able to experience the fun of being part of a Girl Scout troop, or whatever it is, just because no one was able to commit their time. He gets frustrated. I get frustrated. I still add to my plate. I won’t lie, and I know I should be saying no more than I say yes…but I don’t. I can’t.
Volunteering is a free way to help our communities. Even if you are struggling to find money to pay your bills you can still give to others without impacting your family financially. To volunteer to help does NOT mean that you need to block off hours of your schedule several days a month. Oh no. You can help your elderly neighbor put out their trash cans once a week, staple papers for a teacher, take a sick friend a meal, or clean a closet and make a trip to your local homeless shelter. Volunteering helps others and it helps you.
A few weeks ago Big Sister started soccer for her second season. There were not enough soccer coaches and things were crazy. I had a conversation with myself about volunteering and I ultimately decided not to be the coach for my daughter’s team. I now regret that decision. Luckily another parent stepped up and is the coach now. At the end of each practice and game I thank the coach. He is doing something that is a challenge and something that I wasn’t willing to take on myself. This whole soccer coaching thing made me realize that just because something is hard and outside of my comfort zone means that I SHOULD tackle it.
We each have a dream, maybe it is financial success, maybe it is running a half marathon in under 2 hours, or maybe it is being there for your children. Volunteering helps people reach their dreams! Lend a few minutes to a teacher, donate a free after coupon item to a food bank, coach a youth sports team.
Can you imagine how much help we could provide others if we ALL decided to give a few minutes a month to someone else?
What is your volunteering goal for the months of October, November, and December?
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