What's So Positive About Living Primitively?steemCreated with Sketch.

in offgrid •  2 years ago 

Without fail, I hear, "I could never live like that." when people find out I live back in the woods without electricity or indoor plumbing. Let me just say this, convenience does not necessarily equate with happiness.

Living primitively eliminates a lot of the what if's in life. You know where you stand at any given moment. You either have enough fire wood cut for the winter or you don't. Things don't miraculously appear or fix themselves. There's no agency to call to pay your water bill if you fall behind. Out here, if you don't store up rain water when it comes, you'll run out for sure. Ours is a life of labor. Nothing is ever free. There are always trade offs.


On the flip side, are the many rewards. Every single thing that I do has a reward attached to it. They are all steps in making sure my life is a complete and happy one. When I do a chore, I see an immediate result. Chores are not to be frowned upon, but rather looked at with purpose. They make everything run smoother. I feed the chickens, so I can collect the eggs and have a satisfying meal. I trim around my solar panels, so I can have enough power to enjoy my computer at night time.

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(In need of a trim, haha)

Life is hard, but it is simple. It's certainly not a lifestyle for the lazy or fragile. As a widow, on my own, I've had to learn how to do lots of things I'd never tried my hand at before. Ingenuity comes to mind. It's a new game I play, how do I make this work with what I have available. Recycle, reuse, and repurpose is my new mantra.

There are no excuses here. If something did not get done or prepared, it's because I did not do it. Living off grid holds one accountable. No passing the buck. Once I realized it was all up to me, the totality of it all, without reprieve, I had two options. To be scared out of my wits or to embrace my newly found power. I dabbled with both.

So when I hear, "I could never live like that." all I really hear is that one lacks confidence in themselves. I'm not advocating for everyone to take these giant leaps, but I am suggesting small steps. Learn how to care for ones self. Go explore the possibilities on a weekend adventure of primitive camping.


Better yet, you could go one further, how about learning a few rudimentary skills like how to properly hand wash clothes or how to cook over a fire. You'd be surprised how satisfying learning basic skills can be. Having the knowledge that you can take care of yourself in an other wise scary situation is very empowering. You get to find out what you are really made of and that can be surprisingly satisfying.

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This is why I say living off the grid is such a positive thing. After chores, I get to sit back and relax in a stress free, gorgeous environment without a care in the world. It's rare that in todays hustle and bustle to make a buck, that one gets to truly experience freedom. Out here, I am on no ones schedule, I do as I please, when I please. I live about as emancipated as one can get. I bet a lot of folks could get use to that kind of life.

Onward in Strength!
Mary Lotus

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That wood tent looks uncomfortable.


Haha, I bet it "wood" be.

I love it! I think I would be up to living like that. I love nature, and I admire everything that it gives us. I think we all should spent at least a few days every year living with minimum in the nature just so we can stay a little bit more humble and closer to the earth we live on. Living in cities, with electricity, lights, internet…we take it for granted. This is so far from real life. I mean…I know that this kind of comfort has a lot of positive sides, but with every day it makes us more dependable and we keep needing more and more and there is never enough…we put our effort in work and a lot of thing that doesn’t necessary show the effect or it doesn’t give us its benefits…but if you live in nature and with nature…it makes you a lot more vulnerable…every year I spent at least a week camping with the minimum. Far from my home, with no roof above my head…totally dependable of the weather. Only then you can really feel alive…at least I do. When the storm comes, and you survive heavy raining, strong winds and you fight all along so your little tent doesn’t get blown away…how all the other people around come together and help each other…and how alive do you feel after the storm…it’s priceless. Maybe it is just me, but these are the days for me, that I really feel alive and like I am a part of this nature and planet of ours. I know this is far from real living in the woods thing…but it means a lot to me and I think that kind of living that you described is the future if we accept it or not…if we want our planet to function and we want our kids, plants and animals to live long after we are gone we will have to start thinking in this direction.


You are so right, I do feel more live out here! I find joy in the simplest of things. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed my conveniences when I had them. But you know, I never fully appreciated them, instead I took them for granted. Living as I do, I take nothing for granted and everything is a gift. It's a wonderful life. Thank you for stopping by. Here's to camping!


Do you have someone who can keep it all going when you haven't got the strength anymore, or is this a temporary experiment?


Nope, it's a lifestyle choice. So far, I remain single, but I have my peepers open for just the right fella, LOL. I realize I will not be able to maintain everything as it is now. I will have to cut back or eliminate the livestock. Certainly, hire someone for the wood. I built my home with the idea that I will live out my final days here, so it is mostly handicap prepared.

I'm a very realistic, straight shooter type of person. So yes, I've discussed all of this with my children. Now if I stroke out and fall down the hill, well, my dream might be over. But, the same could be said if I lived in a big city condo as well. I firmly believe life is what we make of it.

What a relaxing place. I knew how to hand wash cloths and cook on wood fire. :D


Haha, you are far ahead of the game then. Glad you stopped by.


so do I and we're only still "on grid" for the kids... put prepared and able to live totaly without electricity - but for now I have to admit I enjoy having the power and reading great posts like yours!!!

So very well put! There aren't many who enjoy the same degree of freedom that you do. Sure you have obligations, but they are to yourself, not the "man". I like to think I could live like that.


I didn't start this journey till I was in my later 50's. If you aren't dead, there's always time, haha.