So what does it really mean? Be a Producer not a Consumer?
For us it means keeping life as simple as possible. It means living as close to the land and being as self-sufficient as we possibly can. It means knowing what we do today is building the foundation for our future, tomorrow.
How did we become a society of consumers?
Let’s take a trip back in history before the Industrial Revolution. Before that time men and women worked side by side living off the land. They worked together planting gardens, raising animals, making clothes and raising their families. Once the Industrial Revolution hit men were forced off their farms to work for a wage, leaving the woman at home to tend to the homestead. The more men were away, the more the family had to rely on consumer goods to get by. Men were not there to plow the gardens and butcher the livestock and over time what was being produced on the farm had all been replaced with consumer bought goods. Before you knew it, a two-family income was needed to support the consumer-driven lifestyle. Gone was the pride in making bread from scratch or eating a meal that was solely raised on the farm. Gone were family dinners and porch swings. More importantly, a lifestyle that once was wholesome and meaningful gave way to dysfunctional families that were overweight, depressed and disconnected.
We’ve all experienced it, and some of you may be there right now. Not so long ago we stepped out of the box society put us in and started to wrap our arms around a simpler way of life that meant we took back control of our own well-being.
A life that included turning our backs on the big boxed stores that promised to provide us with everything we needed. From food to clothes they made us believe we couldn’t live without them and we feel into their trap. We gave up who we were and let them take over!
But not anymore…we’ve taken a stand and learned we could be producers and not consumers. We turned our simple homesteaded into our own little big box store.
How did we do it? Let me tell you it didn’t happen overnight and it’s been seven years in the making but step by step we have slowly taken back control of our own life. And you know what? You can too if you just start!
Please don’t think that you have to be in the perfect spot or you have to own land or even live in the country to start because you don’t. It starts with you…right now…reading this…making a life choice to learn how to care for yourself, even if in baby steps.
For us it meant learning to plant a garden, it meant butchering chickens and spinning fiber. But for you, it could mean learning to sew a button on a shirt or growing a pot of basil on your windowsill. The steps don’t have to be big, but that have to be taken. Anything you can do that puts you one step closer to learning to take care of yourself is all that matters.
The good news is we all can do something about it. We can step out of the box society has put us in and be productive again just like our ancestors were. We can take a good hard look at our priorities and turn off the TV and tend to a garden instead, we can raise chickens instead of buying meat. We can learn to cook and sew and bake. We can learn to hunt and fish and chop wood. There is a shift coming that is so satisfying about being a producer and not a consumer. A shift that means people and communities will come together to take care of each other and rely on their own hands instead what the big box stores tell us we need. The journey may be hard, and those around you may not understand but dig in deep to your pioneering roots and look for ways you can take care of those around you.
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