Being a changemaker can be a powerful thing. Do something to make a positive change in yourself, or the world around you.

Be a Changemaker! Win a prize!

Everyone who takes part in this activity from Bristol or London will be considered for our Changemaker Competitions. Top entries will have a chance to win one of our Changemakers Awards. The winning Changemaker entries will receive a training session with a mentor, and an award of between £100 - £1,000 to take their changes further.

You can enter the Changemakers Competition by sharing either a personal change, or a change you make in your community. Choose a goal you really care about and go for it. Then tell us what you’ve achieved.

This activity gives you a chance to:

  • Make a positive change in yourself and the world
  • Connect with your values and what you care about

  • Empower yourself to make more positive changes in the future

  • Inspire other people to follow your example.

How to do it: Community changemaker

Is there anything you’d like to change in the world around you? Pick something that is important to you, and then think of something you can do, that will make a positive difference. Focus on thinking of an action that is realistic and easily doable. Then go away and put your idea into action.

Here are some steps we’d like you to think through, to develop your ideas. Share your answers with us to enter the Changemakers Competition.

Step 1: What is your big vision? This is a BIG positive change that you want to be part of. It should be something quite broad, like ‘eliminating poverty’, ‘achieving racial equality’, ‘improving wellbeing’, ‘creating more sustainable economies’ or ‘improving education’. A big vision should reflect your values - like the value you place on fairness, generosity, responsibility, love, respect, or connection.

Step 2: What is your goal? This is a smaller outcome that you can work towards, that contributes towards the big vision or aim. It might be something like ‘improve access to healthy food in my neighbourhood’, ‘reduce bullying in my school’, or ‘reduce racial harassment on buses’.

Step 3: What actions will you take? What actions will you do, to achieve your goal? If you’re trying to persuade people of something, remember the power of personal stories. Can you share a personal story to help other people understand the importance of the issue? For instance, you could plan to create a video interviewing somebody affected by bullying, and share it on social media to raise awareness. Be sure to choose activities that are realistic with the resources and time that you have.

Step 4: What is the reasoning behind your idea? This is where you explain how it all fits together. Why have you chosen this activity, to achieve this goal, to contribute to this big vision? Be sure that every step is consistent with your core values - the motivations that you think are most important and that should guide you in what you do.

Step 5: Can your idea be improved? Think through counterarguments - Is this a good use of your energy? Are there other things you can do instead, that would achieve more positive change more quickly? Might people from other backgrounds see things differently? Are there criticisms people could raise? Try to work through possible objections. How might you respond? You can either reply to the counterargument, or change and improve your idea in response.

Step 6: Go and do your changemaking activity, and let us know how it goes! - We would love to hear about what you do.

How to do it: Personal changemaker

There are lots of ways to make positive changes in your personal life. For instance, you might like to try out these happiness hacks, which are simple things you can do that are shown by research to lead to greater happiness.

If you are interested in making some bigger changes, below is one technique you can use. It is called ‘6-step reframing’, and is helpful if you want to change a behaviour or a feeling. If this process doesn’t suit you, no problem! Pick your own goal and work towards it in a way that is right for you.

Whatever you decide to do as your personal changemaking activity, be sure to share your story with us and inspire others.

Step 1: Think of a habit or pattern of feelings that you would like to change.

Step 2: In just 5 or 6 words, say what you want to experience or do instead. For example you might want to improve how you eat, stop smoking, concentrate better, or feel more relaxed.

Step 3: Next, get in touch with the part of yourself that is leading you to do the unwanted behaviour. Be friendly with that part of yourself. Even the most unwanted behaviour has some kind of positive intention behind it. Ask that part of yourself what it is trying to do for you. For instance, you may be carrying on smoking because it is a way of getting some time to yourself or taking a break. What positive intentions lie behind the unwanted habit or feelings?

Step 4: Think creatively and come up with three things you can do instead, to achieve the positive intention. For instance, what are three things you can do instead of smoking to get time for yourself and relax?

Step 5: Test out your three alternatives, in your imagination. Can you imagine using them in real life? If not, go back to the creative step 4 and find an alternative that seems realistic.

Step 6: Practice running through the alternatives by imagining using them in different scenarios, until they feel natural to you.

Step 7: Put your idea into practice and tell us about the changes you’ve made.

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