Christmas time is the time of the year that everyone anticipates the most. This applies whether you're a young kid waiting to spring on your presents from Santa like a pouncing tiger, or the parent of said kid counting down the days until Christmas since January. But, the gifts aren't the most important thing this time of the year. It's the feelings of love and unity that we all share through the exchanging of presents and gifting love to our family and friends. We even feel more connected to strangers this time of year. Often, we hear stories of selfless acts across the country, or even across the world, of a kind person changing someone's life in a dramatic way.

The selfless nature in all of us

We see many kind acts on a daily basis, whether we know it or not, as simply as someone sacrificing time, or money, to help another person make someone else happy. It's a beautiful thing. But, why does it only have to be once a year? Selflessness is inside all of us if we choose that it be in us. Therefore, we don't just have to be selfless during the holiday season, more than any other time of year.

Just because it's the middle of July, doesn't mean you can't go out and help a neighbor with a hefty task. It also doesn't mean, just because it's the new year, and Christmas is over, that you can't willingly help the city shovel snow out of the road to help keep people safe.

Most of us live with that mentality for some reason though. Maybe, it's just because of the way we see Christmas as kids. When you were a kid, you didn't think to look for mom and dad helping out a stranger by letting them cut the line in front of you, so they could quickly make their purchase and go home to their own family.

Little things can go a long way, especially for a kid, so if you're a parent, don't be afraid to talk to your kids after having an encounter such as that. Let them know why you did it.

Don't be afraid to smile

As cliche as it is to say, smiles are contagious. Even if you have had a rough day because of work, got there late, messed up on a project, got yelled at, or whatever the situation may be, a Smile and a friendly hello can always make you feel better.

I've had it happen to me before, bad day at work, someone I don't personally know saw I was kind of down about something and they just stopped, said hello, shook my hand, and reassured me that it would be alright. All with a smile on their face. They weren't worried about how they would look just immediately stopping and shaking a strangers hand. They weren't even worried about how long it would take, or where they needed to go. It was a completely selfless act and I felt very comforted by this stranger's kind gesture and words.

At the end of the day, we just need to remember that family comes first, but strangers shouldn't be cast aside. There is no reason that anyone can't just walk up to somebody they don't know and say, "Hey, how are you doing today?" Just asking a simple question, such as that, can make the world of difference to a person's day. You never know who you can impact in a positive way by just doing a kind act, not to mention, a bystander who witnesses the kindness co, in turn, find the courage to spread their own kindness.