March 7, 2011

Going off the Grid is not Social Independance

I am a great example of a person who loves to be with people and have social interaction. It is actually one of my biggest concerns as I consider moving out into the country.

Some would go so far as to say that going off grid is not wise because you are separating yourself from society. This type of thought is one I tend to have, but I have come to disagree with this.  The very essence of what we are trying to do is to contribute to the solution of society issues.  Our very motivation is the saying "Be a fountain, not a well"  illudes to the idea of generosity and giving of our abundance instead of squandering it for our own convenient living.

Jake made a really good point this morning when we were discussing how far to move and my social concern for not seeing friends.  He said "how often do you see 'so and so' anyway?" To which I replied "once a week if that."  I realized that most of my exchanges with this friend were via email and sometimes to plan the monthly playdate with the kids. We also discussed our weekly or biweekly visit to come to town to see family and close friends.  Another note is we would be the people who live out on some land who would be able to offer a fun camping weekend for our friends and family. That is also not mentioning the new local friends we would make when we search out local farm raised meat and fresh local produce or to offer our own crop as well.

So let's look practically at how an off grid lifestyle can be socially rewarding and fulfilling.

1) Financially debt free you are able to give abundantly for the things you believe in or desire to support.
2) If you are a DIY off grid person you learn a lot of important skills for taking care of your home. You'd be able to help neighbors with housing difficulties and offer alternatives that are reusable and sustaining
3) The trend is typically one that looks to local produce and livestock for food sources.  This contributes to our social experience by doing local trade with opportunities such as co op and exchanges for commodities.
4) A lack of conveniences bring communities together. Beyond food there are many ways to support local businesses.  The idea of supporting certain individuals rather than the certain big corporation is much more socially rewarding.

5) We would be together as a family, which I believe is the most important social network anyone will ever have.  As we build our family on this land we are a small community of people working together and interacting with each other. My husband works from home which would make life a lot more bearable to me.

Can you think of other ways off the grid living can be socially beneficial?  Please share!

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Please comment so I can connect with you! Especially if you are a Michigan farming housewife! I have a lot to learn from you!