All week, I’ll be sharing excerpts from my upcoming book “Paradigm Shift: The Case for Sustainable Living“…..
Few of us enter this world of sustainable living/homesteading without a bit of history that motivated us.
We all have our “story” about what created a “Paradigm Shift” in our lives. Whether it be unemployment, under-employment, dissatisfaction in the work force, environmental or health concerns, the world as we knew it just didn’t make sense anymore.
The “way it has always been” just wasn’t working, or at least as well as it used to. Or perhaps not to our expectations.
The day came when we wanted…
and something more simple and satisfying.
The satisfaction that once came from doing the norm is gone. But reality doesn’t allow most of us to just walk away from the American lifestyle just because we aren’t happy…..at least not right away.
But what what would we change to? What sort of “life experience” are we after, anyway?
In the subsequent search for change, we discover the past. A past filled with simple ways of doing things, that draws our curiosity about how people lived and thrived “back then”.
You know, “back then”, before electricity, cars and the Industrial Revolution. Before we needed Prozac and Happy Hours, Oprah and retail therapy.
How did families “make it” back then? What were the dynamics of their lifestyles? Were they happier? More fulfilled? Were there marriages better? Were their children more mature and responsible?
What was better about life “back then”?
Does it have anything to offer me today in the 21st century?
Questions about how families made it “back then” haunted me to a point of research on the subject called “homesteading“.
My “paradigm shift” came after years of working in the corporate world, however, it came at a strange time in my career. Many people leave jobs when they have reached a career “low”, but that was not the case for me. I was at a career “high”. I was where I had always dreamed of being. Yet, once I arrived, I found it to be devastatingly shallow.
This epiphany took me quite by surprise, I must admit. Being raised in the “Feminist Movement” of the 1970′s, I was sold a package that told me I would be happy and content with all that the career world could offer me.
With my “rights” as a woman in-tact, not only could I out-earn men if I chose to, but I could earn the respect only given to men. Empowered and in control, my personal happiness would soar and I would “have it all“.
However, I didn’t find this to be true in my life. On the contrary, I felt that somewhere along the line, I lost the very best parts of myself and my womanhood.
The career world seemed more like more of a “prison” than it did “a means to an end”. My rights weren’t in jeopardy…but my person hood was.
Ten years would pass before the many pieces of my life would merge together in a beautiful symphony of preparation for my lifestyle today.
Re-connecting with my past proved to be exactly what I was looking for….my “Paradigm Shift”. I look forward to sharing my journey with you all this week.