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Smiling woman delivering a bag of groceries to a senior at home as a way to pay it forward

Source: AJ_Watt / Getty

People who live in small towns are happier than those in big cities, according to data from the National Bureau of Economic Research. But what are you supposed to do with that information if your entire life is structured around being in the city? Hold tight: there is actionable information from this report that anybody living anywhere can use.

The main reason people in smaller towns feel happier is this: a sense of community. Small town residents feel a sense of connection to their neighbors. And you don’t have to give up the skyscrapers and big city lights to feel that connection. You just need to work a little harder to find it in the city. And the best way to do that fits perfectly into MADAMENOIRE’s series honoring National Gratitude Month. In this series, we’re talking about ways to pay it forward in every area of your life, and doing just that with your neighbors is the perfect way to start to form connections. Here are ways you can get started today so that your neighbors can finally start to feel like actual neighbors– instead of strangers you park next to.


Run Errands For Someone Who Can’t

Woman in a face mask delivering groceries to a senior woman's home

Source: AJ_Watt / Getty

If you have a neighbor who is elderly and living alone or someone who, for some other reasons, running simple errands is a big challenge for, step in. Check on them once a week and see if they need you to grab anything from the store for them. Perhaps they need help fixing something around their home. Take note of your neighbors who might need assistance just handling basic everyday tasks and be of service.

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