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With a PHD in fashion, a hair ambassadorship with L’Oréal Paris and a global audience, Victoria is the lady behind the award-winning fashion, travel and beauty blog, Inthefrow.

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Spreading A Little Joy
This Christmas

During the hustle and bustle of everyday life and even more so in the run up the festive season, it can be very hard to take a step back and put everything into perspective. We spend so much of December running round to Christmas parties, ticking secret Santa presents off our lists and quite often spending more money than is necessary or even more than we can afford.

Life can sometimes feel like it's just passing us by. But what are the things you truly remember after the festive season is done and dusted and January emerges? What are the things you feel most glad about and the things you are proud of? For me it's the memories and time spent with so many loved ones and knowing that above the money spent, I prioritised the right things.

So although it's wonderful to give and to receive around Christmas, (you'll find no judgment from me about giving beautiful gifts) there's also a lot to be said for the 'smaller' things in life that we can give not just in December but year round too.

With that in mind here are just a few ways you can spread a little joy this Christmas and all through the years to come.

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A big thing to remember is that giving your time can be just as valuable as a big over the top gesture. Offering your help, your expertise and/or your time could mean the world to someone else and it's quite possible it wouldn't cost you a penny. When considering giving your time to a charity this year have a think about what it is that they could need. Perhaps they are inundated with volunteers over Christmas but need help in January instead? Maybe they are blessed with donations over the festive season but the donations dry up into the New Year? Maybe you have the ability/expertise to boost awareness of them around your local area throughout the year? If there's a charity you are thinking of helping this year, it's always worth contacting them and asking what would truly help them in the long term. We all have something we can offer. 

Similarly you can always offer your time to those close to you as well. If a family member is adamant there's nothing they need from Santa this year, then why not spend a little time with them instead? Maybe your brother needs help painting his new house or your Grandma would like to spend a day just the two of you, or maybe your next door neighbour needs some company this Christmas or your best friend, the new Mum, would love her laundry done for the week. There are so many ways to show you care and they might just mean more to them than a gift under the tree this Holiday season. 

If you are thinking of donating more than your time this year, why not research charities local to you that may fly under the radar when it comes to giving. All charitable causes are worthy but perhaps there are homeless shelters, women's refuges, children's charities and animal rescues that rely on local people to carry on the great work they do. Perhaps in 2020 you could forgo one branded coffee a week to make a monthly donation to a cause of your choice or perhaps you could gift your friends and families wishes and donate what you would spend on their gifts, to charities close to their own hearts. There's so many people and organisations doing great things right now, that I'm sure you're bound to find somewhere that needs a little gift in the coming months.

And if you don't have any time free right now or aren't in a position financially to donate, then maybe there are other ways you can spread a little joy through the next year. Clearing out barely worn clothing and lightly used cosmetics to donate, taking part in a sponsored event to raise money for others, organising a charity bake sale at work or school, even sharing worthwhile causes online to boost their followings. There are just so many ways to give back and I for one will be donating my time and money this next year to a handful of amazing causes.

I'd love to know how you might be paying it forward this year and if you have any charities you'd like to share with everyone below please do!
Happy Holidays guys x

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