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I Live Off-The-Grid In A House-Bus

I Live Off-The-Grid In A House-Bus
The first question people ask me when I tell them that I live off-the-grid in a house-bus/mud brick home is: What about wifi? Does that mean you don’t have the internet?
My answer is definitely no, I have the internet because I run my business from home. The internet and the TV are some of the few luxuries we have.
Everything else is fully self-sustainable and natural.
It is seriously exciting and so eye-opening, living like a hippie off-the-grid. Waking up when the sun comes up, to the sound of nature and hearing nothing but silence for miles.
Last year my partner and I made the shift. I wasn’t prepared for the move, but I did it anyway. What the shift has bought about is more than just downshifting externally, but internal downshifting.
I won’t lie, it’s been hard living off-the-grid, it does involve its fair share of work.
We don’t have free running electricity (we are getting solar soon), but right now we use a generator. So, if you want a cup of coffee you have to start the generator to turn on the electricity. You can’t have too many things plugged in at any one time, so make sure you are using your electricity wisely.
I light the fire in the winter around 3:00pm- 4:00pm because it’s so cold. Sometimes I chop the wood because it doesn’t fit into the fire.
My life is simple but it does involve work, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I feel blessed now to be able to live the life that so many people yearn for, but it wasn’t easy. Here are three of my biggest lessons that I have learned by living off-the-grid in a house-bus.

1. Don’t try and fit your life into a perfect box

For the first six months I was constantly projecting myself into the past, comparing how things were and wondering why it wasn’t as easy as before. When I started to let this go, and I stopped trying to fit my life into a box of what I think it should be, I could allow my life to be exactly as it is and enjoy the present moment.

2. Being busy doesn’t mean you’re going places.

When I look back on my life before I moved off-the-grid, I was extremely busy with things that didn’t add value to my life, my relationships or myself. Now, I can see that life isn’t about doing more, having more, or being more, but being selective and grateful for the things that you do have. Doing or having more, isn’t better.

3. The relationships you have matter more than you think.

I spend large amounts of time by myself now, I couldn’t have done that before I moved here. My relationship with myself is the most important relationship that I have. It’s important that I nurture and look after me. When I’m happy my world is a pleasant place to be in, when I’m miserable, my world is miserable. The best thing you can do for yourself is look after the relationship that you have with yourself, become your own best friend, lover, and even coach.

Living off-the-grid didn’t create a simple life automatically; creating a simple life is about a mindset shift more than a move. What living off-the-grid has ultimately taught me, is that life is all about choice- at every moment we can choose how we want to live, feel, and be, in that moment.

My best advice for anyone thinking about moving off-the-grid is this…
It won’t be anything like what you imagine it to be, it will be better.
My life is perfect, I don’t pay rent or have a mortgage, and I don’t have huge stresses in my life. I understand the value of small things and see the interconnectedness of all things. I feel like I am always on holiday, always living what I want to do now and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Featured photo credit: Sarah Liddle/ I am the original owner of this image. via imcreator.com

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Last Updated on April 8, 2020

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Assuming positive intent is an important contributor to quality of life.

Most people appreciate the dividends such a mindset produces in the realm of relationships. How can relationships flourish when you don’t assume intentions that may or may not be there? And how their partner can become an easier person to be around as a result of such a shift? Less appreciated in the GTD world, however, is the productivity aspect of this “assume positive intent” perspective.

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Most of us are guilty of letting our minds get distracted, our energy sapped, or our harmony compromised by thinking about what others woulda, coulda, shoulda.  How we got wronged by someone else.  How a friend could have been more respectful.  How a family member could have been less selfish.

However, once we evolve to understanding the folly of this mindset, we feel freer and we become more productive professionally due to the minimization of unhelpful, distracting thoughts.

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The leap happens when we realize two things:

  1. The self serving benefit from giving others the benefit of the doubt.
  2. The logic inherent in the assumption that others either have many things going on in their lives paving the way for misunderstandings.

Needless to say, this mindset does not mean that we ought to not confront people that are creating havoc in our world.  There are times when we need to call someone out for inflicting harm in our personal lives or the lives of others.

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Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO of Pepsi, says it best in an interview with Fortune magazine:

My father was an absolutely wonderful human being. From ecent emailhim I learned to always assume positive intent. Whatever anybody says or does, assume positive intent. You will be amazed at how your whole approach to a person or problem becomes very different. When you assume negative intent, you’re angry. If you take away that anger and assume positive intent, you will be amazed. Your emotional quotient goes up because you are no longer almost random in your response. You don’t get defensive. You don’t scream. You are trying to understand and listen because at your basic core you are saying, ‘Maybe they are saying something to me that I’m not hearing.’ So ‘assume positive intent’ has been a huge piece of advice for me.

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In business, sometimes in the heat of the moment, people say things. You can either misconstrue what they’re saying and assume they are trying to put you down, or you can say, ‘Wait a minute. Let me really get behind what they are saying to understand whether they’re reacting because they’re hurt, upset, confused, or they don’t understand what it is I’ve asked them to do.’ If you react from a negative perspective – because you didn’t like the way they reacted – then it just becomes two negatives fighting each other. But when you assume positive intent, I think often what happens is the other person says, ‘Hey, wait a minute, maybe I’m wrong in reacting the way I do because this person is really making an effort.

“Assume positive intent” is definitely a top quality of life’s best practice among the people I have met so far. The reasons are obvious. It will make you feel better, your relationships will thrive and it’s an approach more greatly aligned with reality.  But less understood is how such a shift in mindset brings your professional game to a different level.

Not only does such a shift make you more likable to your colleagues, but it also unleashes your talents further through a more focused, less distracted mind.

More Tips About Building Positive Relationships

Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

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