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Monday, May 3, 2010

Simple Life

Hi everyone! I hope you're enjoying this beautiful season that is bursting into life all around us! The 'simple' things are the enjoyable things about Spring. Green things coming up out of the ground, laundry blowing in the breeze, new life in the animal world.

I want to challenge you that living 'simply' will add a richness to your life in ways you might have never imagined, as well as aid you in your prepping. By living simply I mean to find out what your focus is and live in a way that supports it. Is your focus to be closer as a family, to live closer or kinder to the earth, to take control of your life by actually doing what needs to be done instead of letting someone else do for you? The first step is to figure out the goals for your life. Talk with your spouse (or have a heart-to-heart with yourself if you're single). Discuss what is important to you both. Write those goals down.

Then, before you make any decision, ask yourself if the outcome is in line with your goals. If your goal is to live closer as a family, should you buy a bigger house so that the members of your family will never see one another? Should everyone have a tv in their bedroom so that even tv viewing doesn't happen as a family? Do you need to commit your children to playing a different sport every season , thereby removing them from the family for many hours each week?

If your desire is to live closer to the earth, wouldn't it be more beneficial to put in a garden rather than visit the grocery store, or even the farm down the road? Maybe you'll consider putting in flowering plants to help the bee population. You'll definitely think twice before applying weed-n-feed to your lawn or pesticides to your plants.

The funny thing is, living the 'simple' life is actually not simple! It takes an awful lot of work. You have to actually THINK about what you want and about every decision you make. You can't just breeze through life doing what 'the Joneses' are doing. You're probably going to work harder for yourself than you ever have!!

For us living simply means we don't have cable because we don't want to spend an excess amount of time in front of the tube. I hang my laundry on the line which takes more time than throwing it in the dryer. (Oh, but the benefits I reap in the time outdoors and in fresh-smelling laundry!) I spend hours on the garden starting with seed sprouting, planting, weeding, harvesting and canning. But, that time saves me from spending lots of time (and money) in a grocery store on products that might not be raised the way I would prefer them to be raised. Hubby and I say 'no' to many invitations, which are not wrong in and of themselves, because they would take us away from our home, and home is where we want to be. We work hard from sun-up to sun-down, but we do for ourselves as opposed to having someone else do for us. That is how we choose to live a simple life.

If your goal is to prep for whatever may come your way, write that down. Then, when there are decisions to be made regarding how you spend your time or money, ask yourself if it will further the goal of prepping or hinder it. Maybe cutting out your cell phones or your home phone will save you money that can be spent on prepping. Do you need 2 or 3 cars, or can a vehicle be sold to relieve some financial stress and time spent on upkeep? When you take a vacation will you stay in a hotel or will you use that tent in the garage, thereby practicing for certain types of emergency situations. Do you see how thinking about how you live, and living in a more simple way, will aid not only your day-to-day life, but also your preps?

So, I encourage you today to look at your life. Figure out what your goals are. Figure out what living the simple life means to you. Then use those goals as a guide in helping to figure out how to live your life. Make decisions based on how the outcome will best coincide with your goals for life and for prepping. Embrace and enjoy the life that you choose for yourself!

Prep On!
Gen-IL Homesteader
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StrivingSimply said...

This is what got me into blogging, and from that, into prepping. The idea of living a simple, meaningful life takes a lot of thought and reflection, a skill most of us don't practice. Not only do we end up treading more lightly on the earth, but we tend to enjoy it more as well.

Bitmap said...

We are canceling the Dish Network this week. We haven't had the tv on for months.

OTOH I like to have a backup vehicle. We try to keep cars running and make them last. Because of that they sometimes are down for several days for repairs. I don't like to give up my mobility while my primary driver is partially dismantled or in the shop.

SciFiChick said...

Excellent advice Jen. Thank's!

Gen-IL Homesteader said...

SimplyStriving, I definitely agree that we enjoy life more when we live it on purpose! It's worth the effort it takes!
Bitmap, Good for you on the dish! Not sure what OTOH (oh, just got it--on the other hand)! If having a backup vehicle is in line with your simple life, then that's definitely what you should do! That proves that everyone's life will be different than everybody else's when we're thinking about it and living on purpose!
Thanks for stopping by you two and ScifiChick!

Shelly said...

This is such a fantastic post. "Living on purpose," wow how many of us forget to do this. You give such wonderful tips and true wisdom, therefore making this blog so awesome to read.

Gen-IL Homesteader said...

Awww, thanks Shelly! You're making me blush! I feel the same way about your posts (and the rest of this great network for that matter)!

guncat said...

I too strive to simplify and do for myself seems while others cost of living goes up mine actually comes down a little every year. I have a all cash small business.

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