August 16, 2017 7:27 am Published by

My husband and I have decided to live a simpler life and we are moving from our house in the suburbs to a small country town. The process of packing up has been a reflective time for me and synchronicity has played it’s part with recent interviews, lectures and books on sustainability.

I am astounded at the amount of paper I have accumulated over the years – and only about 1% of it is necessary. With our digital age and the ability to store information (mostly) safely in the cloud and on external hardware, I am wondering why we need paper at all. Books, certainly, especially the ones which you want to dip into on a regular basis, but that is paper which has long time use. (While I know some people would argue that all literature can be kept on digital devices too, I am not there yet).

I am wondering why we have accumulated so many other items which have been sitting in cabinets, their existence surprising me. Why do we collect so much stuff? Why is there this hunger for new and shinier things when the old ones still have years of use?

I was captivated by the “Zero Waste” concept shown on Carte Blanche recently. This was followed shortly by a talk on a “Wellbeing Economy” by Lorenzo Fioramonti, opening my mind to a different view on growth and consumerism. But these concepts were a culmination of an ongoing reflection caused first by electricity shortages a couple of years back and now our current critical shortage of water. Learning how we can survive on a fraction of the resources we formerly consumed, leads to acknowledgement of how much we have wasted in the past.

So, as we prepare for the adventure before us – new house, new community – we need to continue preserving what we have, not only the things and the resources but the friendships and relationships which we have formed over many years.

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This post was written by Merridy Edgson

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