Paying It Forward is a series by Giles Cadman about his personal journey to finding ways to give back and make a difference. To read the first in the series, click here.
It’s been a busy few months but I’m proud to say my year of good deeds is off to a good start! If you’re new to the series, not to worry – I’ll get you up to speed real quick. I’ve written about the first time I learned about the paying it forward concept (stranded in rural New Zealand), the effects and devastation of Hurricane Irma, my challenge to you: one year of good deeds, and using your skills to pay it forward to improve the lives of others.
Have I really been keeping up my end of the bargain?
I made a commitment to you to do one good deed every day this year. I think a few people laughed at the idea, to be honest, and didn’t think I’d be able to do it. But I’m pleased to report that I’ve been keeping a diary and I’m actually ahead in the number of deeds, and behind on days! And you know what? I feel really good because of it.
Good deeds can be simple
It’s important to realize that a good deed can be simple, small things you can do in your everyday life. It doesn’t have to look like Drake, walking around in Miami, giving away millions of dollars to various charities in his new music video – although I do admire him for this!
All I’m saying is that anyone can do a good deed and sometimes, it doesn’t need to cost anything but a little bit of your time.
So, what have I been up to?
- Helping the elderly
I’ve been doing small deeds and a few larger ones. The other day, I was at the grocery and I saw an older woman in the parking lot who clearly needed help. She had a ton of things and a very tiny car and was standing there with an expression that said, "What do I do now?" Instead of shifting my hat a bit lower over my eyes like I’m ashamed to say I may have done last year, I looked at her and said, “Hang on a minute!” I quickly took my few things to the car and came back to help her find a way to fit everything into her little car.
While this may seem simple to you, others had walked by and no one else had stopped to help her. Everyone is in such a rush and has no time to do these small, simple acts of kindness.
- Helping others while travelling
If you follow me on any social media platforms, you’ll know that I travel a lot for work. I know the airports I frequent like the back of my hand. So when people are lost and confused, I usually (I'm sad to say) get a little annoyed with them. But with my new paying it forward mentality, I’ve been giving people directions and helping strangers with their bags boarding and exiting planes.
- Getting involved with community charities
Lately, I’ve become involved in a few community charities – helping the homeless and supplying Easter eggs to support caregiving fundraisers and events. I’ve also been supporting and mentoring people in the community who are far better than I and who will be able to execute exciting initiatives in the community.
That’s my check-in for February. I may not get to do these every month, but I will be accountable for posting these when I can! Again, paying it forward doesn’t have to be a series of grand gestures. But helping people when you can really go a long way. My challenge to you is to do a good deed every day for a week and post about it on social media. Tag me if you’d like to share! You can find me on Twitter and on Facebook.
Giles Cadman is Chairman of The Cadman Capital Group, a group of cohesive, complementary companies, operating in the international trade, retail, leisure, and investment markets. Learn more about Giles.