How to Keep Charitable Resolutions

The new year has begun and with it comes resolutions. According to one study done by the University of Scranton, almost half of all Americans make new year resolutions. But as we all know, making resolutions is only half the battle. The study also reports that only 8% of those polled successfully achieved their goals.

Fear not, if you have “be more charitable” on your list we’ve got you covered. We’ve broken it down to give you 5 practical ways to give back all year long.

1. Buy one less coffee or pack of gum each week. Named one of Mashable’s top 25 charity apps, the Instead app encourages you to donate money you would have spent on a coffee, for example, and put it towards a nonprofit.


2. Get organized. We know, this could be a whole separate resolution. But being organized has so many wonderful benefits, including one we’re very partial to re: finding unused/excess items to donate, that it had to make the list. To help get you started, check out the practical tips provided by Chicago professional organizers in our Spring Cleaning with Zeal series.


3. Think outside the charitable box. No longer is donating money the only way to give back. Donating items, known as in-kind donations, and donating your time are incredibly necessary to a nonprofit’s survival. Our “How to Volunteer Over the Holidays” is a great resource for finding volunteer opportunities year-round.


4. Don’t go it alone. Being accountable to someone is a great way to achieve your goals. Running is a great opportunity to partner up, lose weight, and give back. If your goal is to compete in a race, there are tons of charitable road races in Chicago this year. Join up with Zealous Good charity, Chicago Adventure Therapy, to compete in the biggest race of the year, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. And here’s the full list of 2013 Chicagoland races.

5. Write it down. Make a list of 4 small but nice things you can do for someone. Then each month, set out to accomplish one a week. If you find yourself doing something nice that you didn’t previously write down, write that down! Keep a journal of  what you did and who you helped. This should remind you that even the littlest good deed can have a big impact.

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