My 30 Day Sharing Challenge for November is now complete, and I’ve really enjoyed myself! I hope you’ve read up on how I’ve got on so far, but if not, check out my blogs for week 1, week 2, and week 3!
Will you be taking on the challenge in December? If so, drop me a line to let me know – on Twitter or in the comments below. Even if you just did a couple of days, it’d be great to have you involved.
By way of reminder, here’s what I’ve been up to, and here’s how I got on for my final week!
Day 22 was a great start to week 4! I often get e-mails advertising audience tickets for TV shows, but never actually bother to open them and apply. So, as a Friday night with no other plans was looming, I decided to finally take action and take the tickets. And so my new experience was being at the filming of a TV show!
Matt and I headed down to Maidstone Studios in Kent to watch the hilarious Take Me Out, hosted by Paddy McGuinness. I’ve watched the show before on TV, but it was much funnier in real life, and there was a real party spirit in the studio. There was a bar, and everyone was dressed up, and it was a good laugh… plus a pretty cool peek behind the scenes! Matt had never seen the show, but really enjoyed it too, so I think my Saturday night TV schedule should have a welcome boost in a couple of months time!
Day 23, something useful
You join the site based on where you live, and then can offer out or borrow other people’s ‘useful things’. This could be anything from DIY tools to cake tins, books to a language exchange. You can also request items if you need them, and advertise events and notices within your community. It’s a great way of getting to know and help out your neighbours in a way that often just doesn’t seem to exist any more.
I joined the site and got in touch with another member to try and set up a language exchange. Fingers crossed all works out, and I’ll be speaking a new tongue very soon!
Day 24, a chore
Back to my Mum’s house for day 24… and not just because she makes better coffee than I do. It was a pretty chilly day but I managed to make myself useful without moaning tooooo much. I raked up some leaves and mowed the lawn, and didn’t do it badly enough that she’ll have to redo the whole thing.
There’s loads of ways that you can help someone out and share a chore! Sign up to help with TaskRabbit or volunteer to help at Do-It. There’s plenty of people and causes that need help, so get in touch with those near you, or advertise your spare time in your local community and see who approaches you. A job shared is a job halved!
Day 25, some wisdom
I was struck one lunchtime by a great idea to share my ‘wisdom’… or rather, I was struck by a blue tabard. Norwich has a team of City Hosts that volunteer to work throughout the city to welcome, advise and assist the general public. They offer directions, recommendations of places to go, and chat to visitors. They’re armed with maps and you can find them out and about in the city centre Mon-Sat between 10:30-12:30 and 13:30-15:30.
I’d seen the Hosts about before but never used them. As I know my way around the city fairly well (particularly the shops and pubs…), I joined them for a morning shift to help out.
I was partnered with Roger and Linda, both of whom have been volunteering for quite a while, and know the answers to most of the questions asked. We greeted tourist coaches, giving out maps and directions (to shops, the Cathedral, public toilets and even a barbershop!), as well as people on the street, and even driving, who needed some help. It was lovely to spend a few hours away from my desk and get out and about… and hopefully I didn’t give anyone any wrong directions 😉
If you’re visiting Norwich, be sure to keep your eyes peeled and have a chat with the lovely volunteers. They’re all really passionate about the city and will be able to make some good recommendations. Or, if you have a spare few hours and know the city reasonably well, why not volunteer and share your wisdom on the city? You’ll meet some great people, and it’ll look good on your CV!
I knew exactly what to do for day 26, and had my first Geocaching adventure! Geocaching is essentially a treasure hunt across the world, where people leave packages with clues and others adventure to find them, and log their finds. It’s kinda orienteering meets letterboxing, but using your phone’s GPS to track down the treasure.
One of my cousins has been into geocaching for a long time, and whilst I’d observed his finds, I’d never actually given it a go myself. So, I downloaded the App, and we went hunting! My first foray wasn’t entirely successful, as I didn’t figure out the clues enough to find it, but I’ll definitely give it another go. It’s a good mental test, as well as sometimes a physical one, and the community using it are always up for a chat and to give tips!
You can also share your adventures on ShareYourAdventure.com, mapping your hikes and trips socially.
Day 27, some excitement
OK, so I don’t know how exciting this will be for everyone else. But, I finally booked my Christmas holiday away, and using a Countdown App, can watch the days tick by.
I love having plans, and so this suits me really well. Another great sharing app for getting things done is Wunderlist, which I use for pretty much everything. Get organised and get sharing!
Day 28, some creativity
I am not the most creative of people, so sharing creativity was not the easiest pick for me. I dabble in the odd ‘colouring for grown-ups’ book, but even then go out of the lines. So for the 28th (which fell on a Saturday), I did something a little different.
Abandoning a normal night out, I had friends round and we set to a £1.49 charity shop challenge that may have been more suited to an age range a little above us – a jigsaw! A 550 piece puzzle took us about 4 hours to do, and I actually really struggled, but surprised myself by enjoying it! It was definitely something a bit offbeat for me to do with my Saturday night, but a night in with friends was lovely… and we didn’t argue about the pieces. Too much.
Day 29, a lazy day
Easy peasy, and perfect for a Sunday, I shared my lazy day with loved ones. We wore pajamas and onesies all day and started the Christmas film period off by tuning into lots of classics. A lovely Sunday, and one I’ll definitely be repeating!
Why not host your own onesie day, to fundraise for your favourite charity? It could be in school, work, or at home. Here at Liftshare HQ, we’ll be having a ‘work in a onesie day’ in December to fundraise for an animal rescuer based in Serbia. Get cozy and get fundraising!
Day 30, the love!
For my final day, I decided to get involved and sign up to some Love-themed charity campaigns. Pick your favourite!
For The Love Of – a campaign by the Climate Coalition, you can send love messages to others sharing beautiful images of the environment and the areas you love
I Love Museums – run by the National Museum Director’s Council, show your love and add your name to the petition to help museums, despite funding cuts
<3 a bit of Variety – Variety the Children’s Charity offer support and practical help to the families of young people with disabilities. Show your support by wearing their new t-shirt
I <3 Small Charities – an annual week of celebrations, I <3 Small Charity Day is gearing up for 2016. If you’d like to help, or have a charity you’d like to seek recognition for, get in touch with them and get ready for the next event
loveyourhospital – a registered charity fundraising for three community hospitals in the UK, loveyourhospital run a weekly lottery where you can win cash prizes every Friday for a £1 donation
Love UnderDogs – an animal rights charity who rescue and re-home dogs from Romania, this could be the perfect site for you to find your next family pet!
And so, my month of sharing comes to an end.
It’s been fun, and I’ve tried lots of things that I otherwise wouldn’t have bothered (or even thought) to try. I’m glad to have done it, but it’d be great to see others involved. Why not take on the challenge yourself for December? Get in touch with me if you’d like any help on any of the days!
Author Lex Barber