Steps In The Right Direction

1. Everything - people, places, and situations - has something to say. Really listening, without interrupting or letting your attention wander, is the simplest way to learn and understand the needs of other people and of the world.

2. Volunteer your time or donate your money to a cause that touches your heart. Read to an elderly patient or buy new books for a veterans' home. Work at a soup kitchen or send a gift of food. No matter how big or small, your contribution will positively affect many people.

3. Embrace nature and beautify the world for others. To lift people's spirit, keep your garden bright, or plant and maintain flowers in a public area. Plant and donate a tree in somebody's name in your local park. As a gift to wild animals, make your yard animal friendly with dense hedges and by using natural pesticides.

4. Your energy affects others so choose to be a beacon of light. Project goodness, happiness, and peace outward through your home, neighborhood, country, and, finally the world. The effects are felt for thousands of miles.

5. Smile and the world smiles with you. When you catch a stranger's eye, flash a bright smile, even if you aren't feeling quite that happy. Your stranger may be confused, but their day (and yours) will be brighter.

6. Animals feel a lack of love as acutely as humans. Adopt a pet from your local shelter rather than purchasing one from a pet store. If your life can't include a pet, spend an afternoon volunteering at the animal shelter giving the animals some much-needed love.

7. Help improve someone's self-esteem or simply show them you care. Give a compliment, send a friendly letter, or tell someone you were thinking about them. Make an effort to keep in touch with long-time acquaintances and to develop new friendships.

8. Be a role model. Rather than asking others to alter themselves, change your own outlook and behavior. A role model can be a source of inspiration, hope, and self-respect. Or actively take on the responsibilities of a role model and reach out to children in need of guidance or an adult in need of a friend.

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