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Escaping City Life For Living Off The Grid

Escaping City Life For Living Off The Grid

Going off the grid seems appealing, but it is not as easy as it sounds. It takes determination and planning to engineer the successful marriage of energy production, food preservation, and land conservation to get the most out of the available natural resources and become non-dependent on human-made resources. Before you pack your bags and move out to the middle of the woods, it is important to have a plan and to be adequately informed of what you may be getting yourself into, what to look forward to, and what to avoid.

Many people choose to stay within the confines of their regular domicile, incorporating one or two methods either to lower their utility bills, lower their carbon footprint, eat healthier, or simply to develop a closer connection to the Earth and to nature. Regardless of the reason for anyone to want to incorporate eco-friendly methods to live off the grid, there are important needs for every living being to continue to exist.

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No Matter Where You Stand On The Grid, You Need These Things To Live

Over the centuries of human development, we have seen great growth in technology and the instant comforts of a highly electrified and automated society. We have become accustomed to being able to access things nearly instantly, without hardly having to work for them or even think about from where food, water, and electricity originate. Living off of the grid doesn’t mean you have to live in darkness or go hungry.

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  • Having a clean and reliable source of water is essential to survival for plant, animal, and human off-gridders. Undeveloped areas may have a natural underground spring system or need to have a natural well dug to locate fresh water. Rainwater can also be collected and processed through a filtering system to create fresh clean water.
  • When living off of the food grid, it is essential that the produce is grown in a sustainable and season oriented manner. This may involve the introduction of growing systems such as aquaponics, greenhouses, hot houses, irrigation systems, and the knowledge of preparing and storing the garden’s bounty for future consumption. Collecting foods for off the grid living also involves gathering such things as wild berries, fruits, nuts, and other seasonal goodies.
  • To procure a supply of meat and protein for the invested off grid person, hunting and fishing cannot be avoided. This will involve the knowledge of canning and freezing supplies for such things as trapping, fishing, gun hunting, bow hunting, and for raising livestock/fowl. Chickens, pigs, cows, and other farmyard animals can provide a survivalist with their necessary supply of fresh meat, milk, fruit, veggies. and eggs.
  • It doesn’t matter if you go off the grid because you are interested in saving the planet, or just saving some cash off of your electric bill; everyone needs to have a place to live. Whether your home is in the middle of the crowded city, or a hut built in the center of the forest from sticks and mud, using eco-friendly materials and incorporating off the grid policies will benefit both you and the Earth. Many off-the-grid homes use re-purposed materials such as wood or metal for their construction.

Solar Power

One of the easiest ways of creating electricity is to collect sunlight with photovoltaic solar panels that convert the DC current that is produced into an AC current that your home can utilize. Solar technology can be implemented in many different forms such as panels, paints, and cooking vessels.

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Wind Power

This method harnesses the power of the wind to turn an airplane-like blade, normally located on a tower, 50-120 feet in the air. The blade system is connected to a ground generator via the center shaft. As the shaft turns, the generator also turns, thus creating a DC current. After passing through an inverter, this energy is converted to the AC current, which then can provide your electrical supply.

Variety Is Key

In many instances of homeowners who have made the choice to go off the grid, more than one method of energy production, food preservation, and land conservation is utilized to get the most out of the available natural resources. It is important to be able to live off of the land without reliance on the use of coal and petroleum-driven businesses, while leaving behind the smallest carbon footprint as possible for sustainability.

Featured photo credit: Joy Green via tnnursery.net.blog

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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