The new year is upon us, the festive period is over and for many returning to normality on these dark, cold January days can be just a bit miserable.
Returning to work on Wednesday for me was a smidge of a struggle, as despite the fact it had only been a 10 day break, the cobwebs had really started to set in and my brain seemed to be in the first stages of hibernation.
To get the creative juices flowing again and to get geared up to smash 2018, myself and my colleague Jonny were set a creative challenge.
With £100 in our pockets, we were challenged to spend our budget in the most creative way possible. The world was our oyster, and no idea was too silly. It just needed to be achievable in the 8 hours we had to work with.
With all that money burning a hole, I must admit I was a little stumped on what I could do at first. So, I stopped to think about what spending creatively really was. To me, creative spending was seeing just how far I could make the money go, and how many people it could have a positive impact on.
Imagine what an array of wonderful things that money could buy if I gave it away to others, and let them spend it on things that would make a positive difference to them? So, I decided to do just that, give the money away as a gift to wish a few lucky strangers a Happy New Year, and maybe even brighten up their afternoon a little.
I set out to work spreading my new year cheer, leaving envelopes containing a new year message and a £5 note at a number of different locations within Hartlepool.
Starting at the Fens, I worked my way across the town, making stops at Seaton Carew, The Town Centre, The Marina, The Headland, and ending up at Hartlepool Hospital.
There’s something lovely about the thought that that £5 may have made someone smile today, helping them to pay for their bus or their car parking, or paying for a coffee in town with a friend or for an ice cream by the beach with their kids.
I was intrigued to find out who those lucky strangers would be, so alongside the New Year message I asked readers to let Publicity Seekers know through social media, who they were and how they had decided to spend the £5.
On returning to the office it was really great to see a few posts had already appeared on Facebook from those who had spotted the envelopes. My fingers are crossed that more of the lucky finders will come forward through social media over the weekend and that we will be able to identify all 20 envelopes by Monday.
Let me take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy and healthy 2018, from all the team here at Publicity Seekers.