I was chatting to a random earlier—let’s call her Lucy—that happened to share a similar worldview to me. This was refreshing for I experience a clash of ideas with most people in my life. Specifically we were sharing our views on the productivity paradox and how we do not think technology will be the answer the problems in the world—as is so often prophesised. Don’t get me wrong, I believe appropriate technology is hugely important in addressing climate change, peak-resources and environmental destruction, and in creating efficiency, meaning and happiness in our lives. I just don’t think technology is necessarily the silver bullet or that all of it, especially some of the high-tech futuristic stuff, is appropriate.
I shared with her my plans for the future and quite like how I articulated it. So I thought I’d share it with you lot:
Me, I am about to embark on an experiment. At present I work in a job I dislike and earn far too much money. I decided to beat the system at its own game. The job is a means to an end. It’s allowing me to save a shed-load of money so I can buy a cheap block of land in Timbuktu (well, SA’s version thereof), build a small straw bale house, and live a rather self-reliant life. This simply life will require me to earn very little money–I own a business which will pay me a meager though satisfactory profit. I intend to live on less than $12k a year. The point of all this is to be idle for a while and get bored.
From that boredom I don’t know what will become of me. That’s the point. My current life is filled with guilt and excuses. When I’m idle I feel guilty for not doing something productive. When I am productive I feel guilty for not being idle. I need to find my equilibrium; my purpose. And I can’t do it with all these nonsensical distractions around me. I need to get my life back to level one. In doing so, then anything is possible. Why do creatives not prosper? It’s too risky. They have bills to pay.
In a nutshell, that’s how I feel.