Little Treats Keep Jobs

In this economy, try not to cut out every indulgence. Figure out little treats like a pedicure, massage, hair cut, dinner out (no “Two-Fors” please!). These are mostly locally owned and small enterprises in need of the business. Be creative and tip big.

Last weekend, I enjoyed a pedicure at Nail Shop for a modest price of $22.00 + $5.00 tip. For forty five minutes of relaxation, attention and the comfort of a massage chair, I ended up with pretty toes and an improved attitude.

Next stop is Massage Envy. I’ve been carrying around this ‘try us’ card for too long. It’s time to cash in on a $39.00 massage, and try to work this in to my budget once in a while.

What little perk can you give yourself that might help keep a business or job open?

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Suggestion #4 for How to Help Your Local Economy

4. Be Proactive.

If you see a business, cause or effort you can help – just do something! Write that letter, contact your representative, company president, or politician. Let your voice be heard – not in your living room or car – but on the web, radio, mail and TV where it can make a difference.

My personal blog titled Whatever was about apathy.  Obviously there are people who care, but it’s more the exception than the rule. The way to conquer is a lot of people caring even a little. Could we reverse the 80/20 rule?  I believe we can.

There are so many ways to contribute to causes that touch your passion. Sure money is the first component, but giving your time and talent can sometime have an even greater impact.

A new and growing initiative called Generation BIG is leading the brigade to open wide the opportunities for giving and philanthropy. I’m sure there are many of us who dream that if we had more money all the good we could do with it. Here’s a great resource for your inspirations.

Most people are pressed up against a wall and feel they cannot give an inch, yet digging in to help others will make you feel better about everything else. It’s proven, it works, and I challenge you to stretch and experience the return on your investment.

Idea #3 on How to Help your Local Economy

3. Talk positive!

Who really wants more negative news? As bad is it seems out there in the world, nearly every day has a piece of good news worth sharing.

In conversations with best friends to complete strangers, it’s worth a try to come up with a few the good things or concepts, and say them out loud.  How helpful is the negative talk in a business environment? It’s not, and often it is destructive.

Admittedly, today was a formidable challenge to my own thinking. Though I did catch myself a few times, I also missed a few other opportunities to share a kind word or smile. Tomorrow I plan to do better.

Nearly every day we can find something positive to say, and though we may not know the effect it will have on others, we do know the impact it will have on us.

Tip #2 on helping your local economy

2.  It’s a given that we can’t resist shopping on the internet. If you find something you want to buy and are not in an immediate hurry to have it, take the internet price to a locally owned company and give them the opportunity to meet or match the price.  Even if it’s a little more, it might be worth it – you’ll make someone’s day in your community, or at least make them feel a little better.

As a provider of promotional products of which there are thousands of purveyors, it is most rewarding when a customer emails me a product found on-line and gives us the opportunity to compete. In most cases, not only do we match the price, but we offer added value, a lower price or an even better idea.

We cannot stop the hunt, but we can help ensure the best prize.

How we can all help our local economy

With all the moaning about how bad the economy is, I’d like to share some of the ideas that I’ve been putting into practice to combat the barrage of negativity in our world, especially regarding the economy.

My goal is to prompt an awareness in some, help  change those who feel they can’t make a difference to believing they can, and inspire and open forum on ways to impact on our immediate surroundings.

I’ll post one thought per day for the next 15 days, and look forward to your comments. Even if we help just a few people feel better about the their world, the effect will hopefully multiply faster than the nay-sayers and purveyors of doom and gloom.

So let’s start the competition and fire up some solutions!  Hope to hear some more from you.  LGC

1. Buy local – a simple concept but in search of the almighty lowest price EVER, how many of us give the local merchant a chance?

For us here in southwest Florida, it’s the independently owned coffee shops like Bennett’s Fresh Roast, and Nita’s Sweet Bean Café. Sure Starbucks is easy and trendy, and they do employ a few local baristas, but the corporation was piggish and is paying for over expansion after the local guys faded away.