52 Creative Good Deed Ideas to Help Others in 2017

Helping others can be as easy as an honest smile

How to make every day Good Deeds Day (anon_tae / Shutterstock.com)

How to make every day Good Deeds Day (anon_tae / Shutterstock.com) 

Showing empathy and helping other people is basic human nature. Doing good feels wonderful for the person doing it, as well as whoever is on the receiving end, and even the smallest gesture can show a person that they are appreciated and valued. Spreading the goodness for the 10th year in a row, the International Good Deeds Day will kick off on April 2, 2017 in dozens of countries all around the world. If you want to also do good on all other days of the year, the following list will help you come up with plenty of simple, yet effective ideas on how to be a positive change to the people around you.


1. Pay it forward by paying for the coffee, the food, or the bus fare for the person behind you in line.

2. Introduce two people you think would make great friends to each other.

3. Offer to help a friend move/unpack.

4. Donate some warm clothes to a homeless shelter.

5. Offer to do the shopping for a friend or neighbor who is sick or has reduce mobility.

6. Tell someone you believe in them before an important test or job interview.

7. Help out a stressed parent by offering to babysit.

8. Surprise your partner by doing a household chore they usually do which you know they don't like doing.

9. Tell a friend whom you know has been trying to lose weight that they look great.

10. Did you see a well-behaved child in public? Tell their parents what a nice child they have. (Bonus points if the child can hear you, as this will motivate them to keep being good) .

11. Make a conscious effort to work on a flaw you know has been bothering your significant other.

12. Leave a glowing recommendation with the manager after receiving good service at a restaurant.

13. Send an actual thank you note after receiving a gift from someone.

14. Be appreciative of traveling parents and tell them you understand their struggle .

15. Hold the elevator door for someone who didn't quite make it in time.

16. Talk to HR about donating your vacation or sick days to someone at work who is struggling with illness.

17. Really try to put yourself in the other person’s shoes and be empathetic instead of getting annoyed.

18. Fill up the gas tank and/or wash the car for your partner and leave a nice note for them to find in the morning before work.

19. Stop at the neighbor's kids' lemonade stand and get a glass of lemonade.

20. Be patient when someone is taking too long in front of you.

21. Go through your things and donate anything you haven't used in the last year.

22. Compliment a coworker on a job well done in front of others. (Compliments hold more weight when they’re done publicly).

23. Help someone patiently when they ask for your advice.

24. Let someone else have their way without putting up a fight about it.

25. Share your meal with someone who doesn't have anything to eat.

26. Know someone who is looking for a job? Keep your eyes and ears open and let them know when you hear about an opening.

27. Create a happy book by gathering all your good memories with a friend and gift it to them on their birthday.

28. Introduce yourself to your neighbors.

29. Pack extra snacks and offer them to your co-workers or friends.

30. Give a random compliment to your partner, especially if you haven't done so in a while.

31. If you have a skill special skill (photography, cooking, website programming, etc,) donate a bit of your time and team at a community center or even just a friend who has expressed an interest in what you do.

32. Stand up for someone who's being treated unfairly in front of your eyes.

33. Instead of complaining about something that's really not a big deal, just let it go.

34. Bake a cake for the birthday person.

35. Help someone whose car has broken down (Help change the tire, offer a ride, or help call AAA).

36. Offer to cover a co-worker's shift if you know they have somewhere important to be.

37. Know someone who just had a baby or other major life event? Organize a meal, offer to clean up their house or do a load of laundry for them.

38. Go to your friend’s kid’s dance recital - they'll appreciate you showing interest in their family life.

39. Give up your seat on the bus, light-rail or subway.

40. Be encouraging to someone learning a new skill.

41. Listen to a friend in need when no one else wants to.

42. Send a care package to a deployed soldier or to their family at home.

43. Give your old boxes to someone who is moving or use them to donate your old stuff to Goodwill.

44. Help a tourist find their way around your city.

45. Offer the handyman working in your house a glass of water or a sandwich.

46. Reach out to someone who has had an impact on your life and let them know about it.

47. Fill up someone's parking meter that's about to run out.

48. Hold the door open for a stranger.

49. Collect old children's winter coats from colleagues at work and donate them to charity.

50. Call that friend you've been meaning to hang out with for months but never found the time for.

51. Offer a ride to someone you know doesn't have a car.

52. Donate blood and sign yourself up as an organ donor.