You can be extraordinary

What does it take to be extraordinary?

I used to think certain people were given special gifts and talents. I thought they were destined to make a difference in the world because they were somehow smarter or better than “average” people like me.

Now I know we are all just people. We all come into the world the same way. We all put our pants on one leg at a time.

Extraordinary people are simply ordinary people who do extraordinary things. They work hard. They persevere. They’re optimistic and resilient.

Why does it matter if we’re extraordinary?

Because part of living with An Island Perspective means radiating our inner glow to others. Touching other people’s lives in a way that makes them better, happier, stronger.

You see, exhilarating others exhilarates us too! It feels good.

The journey to an extraordinary and exhilarated life includes helping others. Simple, ordinary and compassionate acts of kindness make for a healthier and more meaningful life.

But being amazing doesn’t mean you have to have huge, complicated accomplishments. Just apply yourself in a meaningful and useful fashion day in and day out.

So where do you start? What can you do?

It’s amazing how simple it can be. It begins with deciding what you want to focus on, where you want to invest yourself. There are many things you can do without even leaving home. Open your mind and be creative!

Here are 50 ideas. Maybe you would like to try one of these:

  1. Become a hospice volunteer.
  2. Clean out your closets and donate clothing to Goodwill.
  3. Help end hunger by becoming a Heifer volunteer.
  4. Babysit one evening for a single mom.
  5. Teach a child how to do something.
  6. Volunteer to help the Special Olympics.
  7. Pick up a hammer and join Habitat for Humanity.
  8. Make lemonade for Alex’s Lemonade Stand.
  9. Volunteer on a prayer hotline.
  10. Visit an elderly neighbor and take a goody.
  11. Plant a tree in someone’s name.
  12. Volunteer in your church or synagogue.
  13. Take groceries to a food pantry.
  14. Practice a positive and hopeful mindset.
  15. Knit for Kids.
  16. Forgive someone who has hurt or mistreated you.
  17. Set up a recycling system in your home and workplace.
  18. Volunteer at your local hospital.
  19. Sponsor a needy child.
  20. Visit someone in a nursing home who never has a visitor.
  21. Donate suitcases or teddy bears to foster children.
  22. Treat everyone with the same respect and dignity.
  23. Bake cookies and have a bake sale for Cookies for Kid’s Cancer.
  24. Volunteer to be a Salvation Army bell ringer.
  25. Teach a Sunday School class.
  26. Mentor a child by becoming a Big Brother/Big Sister.
  27. Coach a kid’s sports team.
  28. Participate in a food drive.
  29. Pick up trash along the road or in a park.
  30. Help out in the nearest school classroom.
  31. Lend a compassionate ear to a friend.
  32. Lend a compassionate ear to a stranger.
  33. Become a Red Cross volunteer.
  34. Adopt a pet from a shelter.
  35. Tithe 10% of your income.
  36. Pick up groceries or medicine for a homebound person.
  37. Bake a birthday cake for someone with no family.
  38. Support our troops.
  39. Teach someone how to read.
  40. Become a pet foster parent.
  41. Radiate hope with your own special glow and smile.
  42. Be a pen pal to a child in need.
  43. Look for the good in everyone.
  44. Volunteer at a domestic violence shelter or hotline.
  45. Help cook or serve a meal at a homeless shelter.
  46. Make a life-changing loan through Kiva.
  47. Participate in a walk or run for charity.
  48. Donate blood.
  49. Learn first aid and get CPR certification.
  50. Change something you see in the world into something better.

Maybe you’re still trying to figure how how you can be extraordinary. If so, try this mental exercise:

Imagine your best self. How do you aspire to be? Think about how you want your life to be. What will it take to be the best version of yourself?

Remember, you are unique and one of a kind. You have a specific purpose that only you can fulfill. Be true and authentic to the real you. Dig deep and find the inspiration and motivation you need.

Then, take action.

When you know what you want to do, do it! I’m not talking about anything spectacular here. Simply be curious enough, creative enough, and consistent enough to follow through on simple things. Try it, whatever it is. If it doesn’t work out, try something different. There is no failure.

Let’s enjoy our journey. Find a purpose beyond personal achievement. By consistently and mindfully doing ordinary things. you will have extraordinary results.

Now go make a difference. Be extraordinary. Exhilarate yourself!

Tell me your ideas for being extraordinary.