Change Everything…or at Least Question Everything

January 14, 2013 at 8:43 pm (Eating Nature, Freedom, Health, Letting go) (, , , , , , , , , , )

As I begin another calendar year and focus on what I want to achieve going in it occurs to me that I really need to question more of my accepted beliefs.

282981_10151200469048002_1847061650_nThese beliefs are as simple as I think bread needs to be served with a meal down to what I put in my coffee or tea. It is also as complex as why I think a doctor must be consulted for health issues when I already know the answers or at least the question. I’m not saying stop seeing your doctor but, for me it comes down to doing everything in my power to stay healthy get healthier while adapting to a more positive lifestyle.

So when I gave up grains (excepting quinoa) I started asking why when we have so many fresh whole food choices the American table always seems to include gluten loaded GMO wheat bread made with a variety of toxins designed to preserve your bread and shorten your life. I ask why we think certain foods are breakfast foods and others are for lunch or dessert. In the US we think of the entrée as the main course and yet the word which is French means appetizer or first course.

I gave up buying clothes made anywhere except my hometown San Diego unless they are from a clothes swap or local thrift store. My thought process is this that since an item is second or third hand it is okay since it was already transported here for its first incarnation. The thrift buying and swapping has allowed me the budget to buy local designer made clothes. ( https://www.facebook.com/break.themould.9?fref=ts, https://www.facebook.com/staciemayclothing?fref=ts ) I no longer keep clothes in a variety of sizes. They fit or they are sent on the next lucky wearer. When a friend my size comments on how much they love something I am wearing I make a mental note and when it is time to move on I offer it to said friend. I will still enjoy seeing it on someone new.

My personal bath supplies involved sourcing from a local woman who makes all her soaps and I choose the bamboo charcoal soap for my easily irritated skin. Her bath bombs are da’ bomb and come in delightful essential oil scents.  ( https://www.facebook.com/MyLuckyDragon?fref=ts ).

My food is now sourced from a variety of farmer’s markets as well as the grocer and includes much more organic choices. The microwave sits dormant. I don’t buy food in cans and I buy nothing to be microwaved. I enjoy my life too much to succumb to illness and degenerative disease which can be prevented through lifestyle adjustment.

I have given away a large number of books yet again as I realize they are available online, e-book and library. A rare on American History stays in the small keeper collection. The others were joyfully received by the new owners.

I don’t keep a lot of photos and I have had friends and family look at me funny when I tell them it is about living in the present. Our ancestors before camera had to remember people in their hearts. I have given away many and have one shoebox of photos. When the lid won’t close it is time to go through them again.

I threw away multi vitamins and supplements which are bio available in my new living food diet. Too many additives and sugars in them.

I don’t need to own, insure, store and house everything i have ever owned or desired. Often I think that idea which has bubbled into hoarding for some folks comes from wanting a memory of the $ money spent. A reminder or perhaps we think we can cash it out one day and maybe today is that day.

Sometimes in love and stuff it is time to move on…

 

Advertisements

Permalink Leave a Comment

I too Have a Dream…

July 15, 2012 at 8:28 pm (Art, Letting go, LoVe, Relationships, simple frugality, Travel) (, , , , , , , , , )

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” ~ John Quincy Adams

I have been reading a lot lately and have come to the conclusion finally that I am not alone in my anti-marketing philosophy. I have always believed in meeting people’s needs and not selling them on something whether it is a belief or a product.

We all have too many people trying to separate us from our money, time and resources.

If it is true that when we give advise we are really talking to ourselves in the past then I have a lot to say to a younger me! I will start with STOP spending so much money on crap you don’t need and won’t want soon. I once did a sickening exercise in money blown and how much it really is and it blew my mind. I spent more money on pointless items and eating in restaurants when I was young and struggling to earn than when I was making a very healthy living… I would also say to her dare to take more chances in love and career. I stayed where I didn’t belong too long for reasons I am still not quite able to reconcile. Looking back the chances I have taken and the leaps of faith have paid off. The times I was living in fear and passed on taking those leaps ended up not panning out quite as well. I would have to say living within your means is highly under rated in our culture and yet it is the passport to freedom. Staying in a job because you support the good folks at American Express cuts your options in life. Not owing anyone but the landlord and the gas and light company each month equal more opportunity to change your life as you see fit and act on opportunity as it arrives.

Saving money has many implications. Am I saving money on a purchase or saving because I didn’t make a purchase and put the money aside for bigger dreams? Either way save it, stash it, make it and appreciate what it can do for you. Opportunity cost is that which you missed out on because you couldn’t backpack across India with your friends because you spent all your cash in clubs, restaurants and Nordstrom. You can only spend it once despite what the commercials for credit cards want us to think. I was looking over my last year’s credit card summary (I paid this off last month) and I paid over $1750 in interest alone! That is a roundtrip ticket to anywhere on the planet! Talk about opportunity cost?! I am now saving the amount I used to pay in on my credit card and have set aside a portion of that for international travel. I am now able once again to do little things I put on hold during the payoff period. I have bought a few books and am spending some on sailing lessons a life long dream. I plan on spending some time sailing while traveling so getting my certifications is important to me. I never regret money spent on personal education and training.

Health and the debt illness. I believe the stress from debt is very hard on health. It was for me. I spent too much energy on worrying and coming up with money in tight months to pay them first. I now have a huge weight off my shoulders and it feels great! Now I can buy healthier organic food and again that is an improvement for my health. Not getting sick is a whole lot easier than getting well. Sounds like double talk? No, not really when you stop to think about the cost of stress and cheap food on your health.  Even the cost of the gym membership which financial gurus will try to convince you must be given up is money well spent when used. Exercise has a lot to do with reducing stress and overall health. Something I should mention to my younger self and remind my present self.

Travel is high on my priority list as I did not travel much in early adult life. I made a rather quick decision to move to France in 2007 as part of a study abroad for my business school. I attended a private university in the Calanques outside of Marseille. The natural environment was so stunning I could not gather the words to tell my family back home how incredible it was to go to school and live in a forest on the sea. I spent my weekends in Paris and Nimes and Arles and the surrounding countryside. I spent my week-long breaks in Amsterdam. My boyfriend came to visit for two weeks and stayed two months even traveling to Italy during my mid terms to check out the Angel Academy of art where he hoped to one day study.  None of this would have been possible had I not saved for years and gone without lattes at school (I brought my own tea bags and commuter mug) and planned ahead. I was able to pay cash for my life abroad and incurred no debt. I was free to travel and explore the French countryside as no tourist ever could. My boyfriend and I had discussed traveling to Belgium and Holland in the first year of our relationship and in the second I went to France. Although we are no longer together our shared experiences in Europe are a tie that binds and is full of memories of trials and fun and discovery.

My most recent journey into debt involved helping out a family member which again I have no regrets except that I could have planned and managed it all better on my part. My mother taught me never to loan money you can’t afford to gift so I always see these things as just that. Now that I am debt free for a third time in my life (the last time lasted 13 years) I am older and wiser. Money is just a tool and nothing more so spend it like your time…wisely.

 

Permalink 2 Comments