Instead of What?

I’ve been contemplating the name of this blog and what it means to me personally. I don’t know the thought behind the name, as I was not involved in its development.

What does insteading mean?

According to the Urban Dictionary, the definition of insteading is:

When you’re doing anything but the assignment that you’re supposed to. Avoiding writing your paper/essay or doing any study related activity by involving yourself in anything that can distract you Procrastination.

Clearly, that is not the answer. Procrastination has nothing to do with the ethos of this site.

Instead, this is what Insteading means to us:

Resources for those who value self-sufficiency, sustainability, and community reliance, including topics like collaborative consumption, the sharing economy, local and virtual currencies, off-grid living, and peer-to-peer technologies.

I think of it as a modern term related to homesteading. Although many of us aspire to be homesteaders, there is more to conscious living than the self-sufficiency of yesteryear. Even though I live off-the-grid and grow a lot of food, I still rely on technology I am not willing to give up. I have a long way to go to live an insteading life

Instead of what?

  • Instead of relying on farmers in distant lands, I want to grow my food. Then, I have control over what fertilizers are used and how water is conserved.
  • Instead of getting power from coal and nuclear plants, I want to use green energy in my home. I want to be able to rely on my own two hands to fix power outages, and I don’t want to feel guilty for using electricty.
  • Instead of feeling isolated while living amongst hundreds of thousands of people, I want to feel connected to my community. I want to be able to trade with neighbors for their cottage industry goods. I want to know there are people I can trust and call on in times of need, and vice versa.
  • Instead of vacationing at a resort, I prefer the wilderness.
  • Instead of going to a gym, I prefer to hike and practice yoga.

Instead of what? There are so many alternatives to modern life that are contemporary yet fit the ideal of insteading.

There was a time in my life when I wanted to do it all in terms of self-sufficiency. I wanted sheep. I wanted to spin my own wool. I wanted to weave my own cloth. I wanted the sheep to mow the lawn. I still have my loom and spinning wheel, but the sheep have never come. I enjoy these crafts not to fulfill a desire of self-sufficiency. It’s just not a reality for a family of four in modern times.

What do you want to do instead of the conventional American life that is unhealthy for our bodies, souls, and the planet? How do you live an insteading life?

Written by Jennifer Lance

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