10 Ways to Make the World a Better Place

Making the World Better

1. Give your time, skills and/or money to a good cause. Not only can this help the community but it can also improve our health, ease feelings of loneliness and broaden our social networks. Whether you go the official route through a volunteer organization or come up with ideas and charities of your own, it’s a win-win-win to making the world a little better.

2. Instead of driving, walk or ride bikes. What better way is there to get outside and cover some ground than going for a spin? Not only is it easy on the environment but it’s also great exercise and a good way to improve mood.

3. Get creative—and involve others. A good example of this is Fernwood’s Pole Painting Project (Fernwood.ca). The installation of over 100 brightly painted telephone poles has helped slow traffic and discourage graffiti while bringing the community together and creating warm, friendly spaces.

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4. Gather family, friends and neighbors. Keep it low key and informal, don’t worry about a messy house or a fancy meal, the point is to get together to enjoy each other’s company and connect despite everyone’s hectic schedules and/or the busy day-to-day.

5. Unplug. Maybe not for a weeks-long digital detox, but maybe at least a few times a day. Or create some no-phone and no-screen zones in your home: in bed, at meals, outdoors. Play a first-to-look game where the first person to check their phone has to wash the dishes or walk the dog.

6. Go out—outside, out on the town or out of your comfort zone. With the weather warming up, it’s easier to get outdoors, go on a road trip or try something new. Watch how your mood improves—and how that can spread to others around you.

7. Spread kindness. Hold a door open for someone, offer to help carry somebody’s groceries, drive patiently, bake for a neighbor.

8. Express gratitude. Did someone go above and beyond for you? Say so! Did something work out or fall into place? Create a family ritual of reflecting on all the good things that happen each day. Or create a gratitude journal and invite kids to add daily entries.

9. Reduce your carbon footprint. Remember Earth Day is April 22. For a Footprint Calculator and to learn about ways to walk softly on the earth and give back to the world, visit footprintnetwork.org.

10. Do what you love—that alone will inspire others. For work and for play, doing what we love brings us—and often those around us—joy. Better yet is doing what we love with those we love.

Vancouver Island's Parenting Resource