There's been a lot of content out there about the 100 day countdown to Christmas. Horrifying possibly, but a useful moment to consider how you will direct your hard earned spending power at the end of 2023.
Rather than focussing on the pressure that a 100 countdown might create in a rampantly consumerist world, maybe we can harness the power of a time limit to create real change. Perhaps we can adopt a 100 day goal to deliver real and lasting impact on what matters to us most.
As you might imagine our focus today will be little businesses, communities and the planet. In a world where we might feel quite helpless and with limited budgets, we wanted to share some positive actions to take from today.
Take some time now. Before the chaos and in the lull, make a plan for these 100 days that aligns to what you really want. Think about your budget, how you gift, what your values are & what difference you'd like to make.
Give more. Your budget might be strictly limited but your dream to give more isn't. Plan in ways that you can give back in the next 100 days. This might be your time, your stuff or your skills. Get super creative and maybe club together with friends to make more impact.
Small and meaningful. We're all going to be sucked into a vortex of advertising in the coming days but, with a plan, we can choose gifts with meaning first. Think handmade, locally made, upcycled, repurposed or even made by you. Make micro the next black!
Christmas markets. Maybe you can make a pact with your family that all gifts to each other come from a market. This way it's much more likely that you will buy gifts that are made and curated by a small, local business. Try Pedddle to find one near you.
Create a theme. Choose a theme for all your giving this year. Think foodie, handmade, plastic free or only gifts from tiny businesses.
Gift one, give one. We can add more to our community through the power of gifts. For every gift you buy, plan in an equivalent 'gift' for your community e.g. a volunteer hour, a donated item, a sponsored activity etc.
Go plastic free. Why not make a new rule in your family for plastic free giving? This could be a fun challenge that everyone is part of to find gifts with either no plastic (think packaging folks!) or with plastic that will last for years and years.
Choose ethical. Planning ahead means we can check out how those we buy from are conducting their business. Often small and micro businesses have the most transparent supply chains and will be more than willing to share their ethical considerations.
Use you precious pound as a vote. As consumers, we have more power than we think in our hands. Check out apps like the Good Shopping Guide to find out how your chosen retailer or producer is behaving. Better still, shop small and ask the owner or maker direct.
Less stuff, more memories. Maybe this year, you could choose to make a collective memory in your gifting. Friends or families could club together to buy a short break or experience for 2024 together. In world of unwanted gifts, this will last forever.
Adopt a charity or cause. How about choosing one charity that means a lot to you to be the focus of your attention during these 100 days? Perhaps you walk 100 miles for sponsorship, add 100 food items to a box for a food bank or collect 100 unwanted clothes items from friends to give.
Grow 100 things. How can we ensure what we spend in the next 100 days lasts? How about sowing 100 seeds for the future. This could be fruit and veg in your own patch, tree seedlings or a charity that sows on your behalf to give to?
Go local. Why not challenge yourself to a hyper local shopping experience? Stick to a 5 mile radius to ensure you seek out the locally produced, local high street options.
Instagram your Christmas. All year, we like and love beautiful things on Insta but do we actually buy? Why not make an Instagram list today of all your favourite micro businesses of 2023 and make your shopping list only from them.
Long table lunches. You may have heard of the 'The Long Table' organisation, but why not make your giving in the next 100 days about sharing your table more? Maybe you don't celebrate Christmas anyway but want to use this time to give the gift of a meal.
Give your skills. You will likely have a special skill - book keeping, cooking, sewing repairs, cleaning, organising events - why not give your skill for free in the next 100 days to benefit those in your community who need it most.
Share the love. Let people know about your plans to inspire or give top tips. If you discover a great micro business, let other know on socials even if you can't buy. If you're going plastic free, show people how they can do this too.
Let us know. We're hosting a '100 Day Challenge' inside Simply Club to help #teamsimply make the most of these days to impact their businesses. We will also be using #100daychallenge to inspire along the way and want to hear from you.