It’s not quite December yet but the holiday season is already upon us! We took Chayton to the Enchant Christmas Light Maze and Market the other day and he was absolutely mesmerized by the twinkling beauty (and warm cup of hot chocolate that he got at the end!).
We all know that the holiday season means lots of parties, lots of good food and lots of gifts. But as Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday all took off this weekend, I spent some time meditating upon my purchases habits and where I want to spend my money.
This year I’ve made a conscious decision to shop small whenever possible. I’ve always been a supporter of small, local businesses but this year I’ve taken it to the extreme; even when it’s a bit less convenient or a bit more money, I choose to shop small.
In every situation the pay off of this choice has been positively rewarding.
Not only do I now have products that I value and appreciate more, I wear them with pride knowing that my money went to support a local entrepreneur rather than a corporate billionaire CEO.
I know that there are ethics behind my purchases and when shopping small, I can speak to business owners, artists and makers directly, ensuring that there is transparency within the supply chain and integrity behind each product.
At times I spend more on an item than I would if I bought it at a major department store retailer. But when buying small, I found that I receive higher quality and because I can’t impulse buy my purchases, I put more thought into each item…” do I really need it?”, “how will I use it?”, and “what will the impact of this item be?”.
And while all these reasons are good and noble considerations to shop small in and of themselves, my biggest reward for shopping small is the people that I have met behind the products. Many of these business owners, entrepreneurs, artists and makers have become my friends. I know their families. My children play with their children. I watch as they struggle and persevere to capture their dreams. And I am inspired by the growth that is happening within my own community.
And at the end of the day, it’s not the stuff in our life that will truly bring us joy – it’s the people.
So let’s keep this in mind as we continue on into the holiday season. Let’s put people before profits, people over products and if you are going to buy someone a gift, make it one that counts. Because when you buy from a small business, you give two gifts at once – one to your loved one, and one to the family it financially supports.
For some of my favourite ethical retailers and beautifully curated small shops, visit JustlyMarket.com or check out the list below:
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
*This post contains affiliate links to some of my absolute favourite brands. I can vouch for their ethics and transparency. I love the good they do in the world and I know you will too.