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The smallest act of generosity can have a big impact on the way we view ourselves and the way we view the world around us. We start feeling calmer and becoming kinder to everyone, including ourselves, and we start to feel those benefits right away. By practicing generosity on a daily basis, we develop a giving nature that benefits ourselves and the people around us, which helps us work through the challenges we encounter during the recovery process.

A simple word or two can be enough to make or break someone’s day. We can use words wisely. Without being dishonest, we can be generous in the things we say, and how we say them, by focusing on using kind words when speaking to others. We should get used to giving compliments and saying a heartfelt thank-you now that we no longer have to live the lives of defensiveness and hostility that addiction left us. If we start practicing with the lessons of politeness we were taught as children, we’ll find that our days are filled with opportunities to say something nice.

Attending meetings, time with our families, therapy and our other daily obligations, our “free” time becomes more and more limited. Part of personal growth, however, is making time for others. Even if it’s a half-hour here or an hour or two there, we can show generosity by making some space in our schedule and giving some of it to help others. Charities, other organizations, and our community support meetings all need people who can give of their time.

We can show generosity through even the smallest acts of kindness. Offering to help someone carry heavy bags, inviting a newcomer out to coffee with the people we hang out with in recovery, or shoveling the neighbor’s sidewalk – whatever it is – our generous acts can brighten someone else’s day, at little or no cost to ourselves.

When we’re able, we can commit to performing at least one small act of generosity each day. Whether it’s with our words or deeds, we can give our time and care to someone else. By focusing on being generous, we wind up growing as individuals and becoming happier and healthier.

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