Lent is approaching this week, and already folks are discussing the usual giving up of sweets, cigarettes and alcohol for the next six weeks. Yes, all of this will come with both health and financial benefits, but how about giving back instead of just taking away?

Make a promise that in the next six weeks, you are going to commit to something for the better to benefit the community. Start training for that marathon, or organise a table quiz for a cause that matters. Don't simply make Lent about depriving yourself, take these six weeks as a chance to impact positively on others.

Why not have a look at some of our registered charities and volunteer for them? Some Irish charities need helping hands, not just handouts. Each charity lists what their volunteer needs are on their Yellow Harbour link. So no matter what you have to offer, you can make a difference.

You won't regret it, and at least it makes giving in and tucking into all those Creme Eggs around week three feel justified.