Wednesdays are simplicity days at SimpleProductivity blog.
I’ll admit, the ideas put forth in The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich are intriguing. After all, working only four hours a week and living a fabulous lifestyle? Who wouldn’t want that? And a main component of this success is because of outsourcing.
Regardless of what was in the book, some things should not be outsourced (like interactions with family members). But I tried to outsource what I could. I had a person do my grocery shopping and errands. I had (infrequent) manicures. I had my gifts purchased, wrapped and mailed through a service.
Things changed when I lost my job. I lost my job, my shopper lost hers. Trickle down economics, I believe it is called. I cut out manicures, and started to wrap and mail my own gifts. And although I am working again, I don’t have the disposable income to afford the services anymore.
In fact, I am outsourcing even less than when I was unemployed. The thing that surprised me is that I enjoy doing many things myself.
I’ve even learned some new skills in order to do this. I started sewing again, in order to make window coverings and mend clothes. I learned how to trim my daughter’s hair. I’ve started growing vegetables (with little hope of success, but I’m trying). I preserve my own jam. I make my own pizza dough. I’ve created a sourdough bread starter (named Beulah) to give us artisan breads at home.
As I return more to the skills of my forebears, I find more joy in my life. I am teaching my daughter about skills that were passed on to me by my mother and her relatives. My life is simpler, because I no longer have to rely on others to do things. And in the long run, it feels like I am going to have more fulfillment than in letting others do these things for me.
Photo by oskay