Valentine’s Day is widely known as a holiday dedicated to love, on which love-stricken individuals give gifts, flowers, chocolate and cards to show affection to their crushes and significant others.
However, love doesn’t always have to be about romance, and neither does Valentine’s Day. An act of love can be as simple as a kind or generous gesture. You can express love to any person in your life.
If you’re looking to spread some extra love this year, consider reaching out to your neighbors. These are people you live with and probably see on a regular basis. Offering them a gesture of appreciation is a great way to make them smile and potentially make their day and yours.
Not sure where to start? Here are a few ideas of ways you can show your neighbors some love this Valentine’s Day:
- If you can bake, make and deliver some delicious cookies, brownies or cupcakes to their door.
- Take someone out to coffee or lunch – your treat!
- Provide some much-needed company to a neighbor who lives alone.
- If you notice someone’s parking meter is about to expire, put some money into it.
- Put a friendly note or letter in their mailbox to show your appreciation.
- Offer to babysit for free – give them a break from their kids so they can enjoy a romantic Valentine’s Day evening together.
- If you’re handy around the house, see if they have any small home improvement projects you can do for them, like re-sanding something for them or coming over to fix a leak.
- Clean up their yard – rake leaves, weed their garden, water their plants, paint their fence, mow their lawn or wash their windows.
- If their car is dirty, offer to wash it for them or even wax it if you have the tools. This is especially nice in the winter when many cars are covered in road salt.
- If you get some snow, shovel and salt your neighbors’ sidewalks and driveways.
- You can also scrape snow and ice off their car windshields so they can get to work on time.
- If your neighbor is overwhelmed, offer to take some of the burden by running errands like picking up groceries or dry-cleaning.
- If you live in an area with high pedestrian traffic, set up a grill outside and give away hotdogs and hamburgers, or even just cups of coffee.
- If you’re musical, bring your talents door to door. You can also travel to a local assisted living home or hospital – music is wonderful therapy.
- Give someone a compliment or just express your appreciation for all they do.
- Pick up trash from neighborhood yards, streets, parks and nature trails.
- Be a complimentary Uber driver and offer a free ride or to pick someone’s kids up from school or daycare.
- Bring in your neighbor’s trash cans off the street before they blow away.
- Give a call or shoot a text to someone you haven’t spoken with in a while.
- If you’ve read a great book or watched a good movie recently, pass it on to a neighbor who would appreciate it.
- Take the time to listen to someone – whether they are troubled or delighted about something in their life, people appreciate being sincerely heard and understood.
- If your neighbors have pets, buy a box of treats to bring around for them – or bake your own!
- Walk their dogs.
- Give away flowers. You can even attach little cards with Valentine’s Day greetings or compliments to them.
- Help them spread the love by taking them to volunteer with you at a community aid organization such as a soup kitchen or a shelter.
- Donate some money to their favorite charity or nonprofit organization.
- If you know a family who is struggling with a health issue or has recently had a new baby, bring them a dinner.
- Give away some belongings you’re not using to a neighbor who might need them.
The list could go on. There are countless ways to show your neighbors and everyone else in your life that they’re loved and appreciated on Valentine’s Day and every day of the year. So go out and make someone’s day (or year)!