Less is more…

I have  started a journey to live a more sustainable life, to have more positive encounters, to live with more intention and with less consumerism.  Now, immediately what comes to mind as I type that is a hippie commune. You know from the late 60’s and early 70’s with their free spirit free love mantra.

image

No, that’s not it, that’s not what I’m talking about or is it?? I think I understand what hippie’s were trying to do: harmony with nature, communal living, artistic expression and recreational drugs use. Okay, okay I’m sure that is NOT what I want.  I believe at the core of what was going on with that movement was being happy and accepting of each other. They had an idea that government was corrupt and the industrial age was pushing consumerism.  I think consumerism is what I’d like to move away from. Yes that’s it! I’m beginning to believe that less really is more.

Holy moly, do advertisers and marketing agencies do a great job of pushing new crap down our throats!!  To good I think, I’m not a loser if I don’t have the newest version of that rotisserie cooker.  I won’t be archaic if  my phone isn’t replaced every 6 months.  And the show “What Not To Wear” makes me feel like I need a new wardrobe NOW!  That’s how manipulation works.  We get conned every single day by the media.

Moving away from what is perceived to be normal is both exciting and scary because I’m leaving behind my comfort zone to create a new one. I think mindful or sustainable living is still a bit nouveau so a part of me feels like I’m going against the grain. I also think that sustainable living and mindful living may be two different things that I’m trying to combine together, I could call it sustainful living (maybe it will catch on) and where do I even start with all this?!?

Mindful living is where you are fully in the present.  Completely submerged in the here and now with limited distractions to pull you away from it. Boy in today’s world that seems like a tough thing to pull off right? It’s not an easy task but can be learned or should I say re-learned? We weren’t always caught up in smart phones or social media.  It’ll take some adjustment and I’ll probably forget from time to time but it will be worth the effort. Eventually it will be easy and I won’t forget to enjoy this minute at this time.

Sustainable living is using natural resources without depleting the source or causing severe ecological damage.  Oh crap, failing at this.  We have no intention of “going off the grid”  (there’s no way my husband could handle that, he’s kind of a  techy and as the director of sales for an IT company he needs to be on the grid).  Our goal is to move out of this home (hate being in a subdivision and hate having a Home Owners Association) in the next 3 years, to purchase some land, build a home with as many recycled or reclaimed materials as possible. To be as energy-efficient as possible and to grow as much as our own food as possible.  Until we are able to make our goal a reality, we’ve started to reuse what we can and recycle as much as possible. We want to be able to provide for ourselves while leaving the world in better condition for future generations.

image

Positive encounters mean that I’m no longer allowing circumstances or people to interfere with my well-being. I won’t listen to gossip or be pulled into a drama fest. If every time I see someone all they do is complain then I’m going to have to limit my contact with them. I’ll still love ’em but it will be a long distance kind of love! I want to be around people who see the joy in each day. People who are inspirations in kindness and compassion.  Confront the trouble, deal with it and move on to happy.  Each. And. Every. Day.

Intentional living would be all the above combined for me. My values and beliefs without distractions whether others are accepting or not.  If I can be a positive influence or an inspiration to someone as others have been to me then we’re heading in the right direction. Eventually there will be a tipping point and all of this could become the normal again.   Maybe the first step is becoming aware and sharing with others, so go ahead, share this with your friends. I’d love to hear what you and others think of the topic.

*photos were taken from Pinterst

 

Advertisements

15 thoughts on “Less is more…

  1. So many things to say! As a designer, it gives me more hope for the world knowing that there are other people out there who want to live and build sustainable. For me, I absolutely agree that less is more– I find that I am happiest when I go camping with little to nothing with me! Every year I think I learn to make more things on my own– it seems way more bearable knowing exactly what goes into the products you use and consume. What is truly astonishing is that more people don’t grow their own produce! With just a small patch of a backyard you can feed a large family! When you think of how much food is shipped across the country it’s astonishing. I look forward to seeing the places you go! P.s. the cheapest way to get a cheap but well designed house is to ask architecture students and professors to design for you. Many times the real-world experience and building a design is enough payment and they will be grateful 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, great tip on the students and professors, I’ll keep that in mind. I would love to have a small garden in my yard but our HOA won’t let us (just another reason to move) but I’m guessing that folks like us are the exception rather than the norm. Sometimes I think we live in a world that needs/wants instant gratification , you know? Oh well I still think we all have the best of intentions. And please come back soon!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Not yet. I have been thinking about posting my design portfolio through behance, but have not gotten around to that yet (hopefully someday soon)

        Like

  2. To steal a quote from Kung Fu Panda, ‘Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery; today is a gift- that why we call it ‘present’!
    Wish you all the best in your resolution for living on the moment!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. you could always consider straw-bale building for your home. It is much like adobe, costs significantly less than regular housing, sometimes is it much less than recycled materials…..and it cuts down on electrical use in cooling/heating as it maintains a constant temperature. Heck, I know a fellow that went a step beyond straw bale and used tires for his building materials….. (yes, I am an ex-hippie!…no drugs though)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. An ex hippie! Fantastic, I’ll need your input as we slowly but surely make this conversion. I think I seen a show where someone built their home from old tires and packed them with dirt. It was such a long time ago but those are great ideas to consider. Thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This is awesome! I think about this stuff all the time, and have tried to take baby steps towards making it a reality for my life.

    If you’re interested in sustainability, maybe read the book From Cradle to Cradle. It’s about sustainable product design, and the way that making the right choices can have a huge impact. The book definitely was an eye opener to me. For instance, the Method brand of soap is a Cradle to Cradle approved product, which means that it is fully biodegradable and has zero negative ecological impact. I only buy Method soaps and cleaning supplies – and it’s not even a sacrifice because they smell great and are often less expensive at Target than other brands!

    You can think about the baby steps that will be easy to incorporate into your current lifestyle and then keep building toward your goal! I’m excited to see how you make the transition to this lifestyle!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jackie I think your suppose to be my baby sister! I ordered the book, thanks for the referral. Yes you’re right baby steps are what I’m doing now. It started with the food we eat and has now carried over to cleaning supplies. I already rescue furniture so this path we’re on seems to fit. Right now 3 yrs seems like a long way out but I know it will fly by. I’ll keep the blog updated with new steps I’m on, so keep your advice coming!

      Like

  5. Interesting move. Literally. Recycling is major we have found. Then the gluten- free thing, GMO, and free-range chickens. Little by little. We have really cut back on refined sugars. Nice essay. Don’t forget to consider solar.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s