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A simple ‘good morning’ ranks among top ‘good deeds’ to brighten another’s day

September 12, 2022

Three-quarters of Americans believe that, if they do a good deed, the next person will pay it forward—based on a survey of 2,000 people, in which most define a “good deed” as an action that makes someone else feel good (64%), reports Study Finds.

Moreover, nearly half of respondents say that they believe a good deed is something that benefits another individual, regardless of whether they personally know them or not (46%).

Among the good deeds that are most likely to turn the recipients day around are the following:

  • Helping someone with a task (61%),
  • Donating to somebody who is in need (59%),
  • Saying “good morning” (53%), and
  • Holding a door open for someone (53%).

Nearly nine in 10 also contribute to a charity in some way and feel better about themselves when they do so. Plus, those who give back are almost twice as likely to say they’re satisfied with their lives.

The survey was conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Walgreens. Results show that good deeds are rewarding and can have hidden mental and physical health benefits causing the people who perform them to feel happy (92%), relaxed (77%), and healthy (71%).

In fact, according to nine in ten Americans, the best reward may be the good deed itself. Respondents donate an average of $168 annually and almost all admit they donate more during the holiday season than at other times of the year. On average, people add on an extra $404 during the holidays.

The vast majority of those who donate are more likely to focus their efforts on a local group rather than a national charity or nonprofit organization (92%). Two-thirds believe this will have a bigger impact and three in five believe it’s more trustworthy.

The spirit of giving inspires some to focus on holiday-specific causes, including charities that distribute toys to children in need.

“Our data show that more than half of those who donate choose health-related charities,” says Maria Smith, Vice President of Payments & Financial Services at Walgreens, in a statement. “It’s also interesting that those same consumers prioritize their shopping at retailers that share their values and support causes they believe in.”

Eight in 10 respondents say they’re more likely to shop for a specific product or at a particular store when they believe it will benefit a cause they care about. Despite this sentiment, three in four Americans wish the companies and the products they chose made it easier to give more.

Research contact: @StudyFinds